LEADING OFF: More All-Star starters in Chisox-Brewers set

Jul 24, 2021, 11:08 AM | Updated: Jul 25, 2021, 1:13 am

A look at what’s happening around the majors today:

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STAR STARTERS

The White Sox and Brewers close a weekend full of impressive pitching matchups in Milwaukee with arguably the best of the bunch Sunday night.

Lance Lynn (9-3, 1.94 ERA) starts for the White Sox against Brandon Woodruff (7-4, 2.04) in a duel of All-Star right-handers.

The NL Central-leading Brewers started Freddy Peralta and Corbin Burnes earlier in this series, while the AL Central-leading White Sox turned to Lucas Giolito and Carlos Rodón.

Of those six starting pitchers, Giolito is the only one who didn’t make the All-Star Game this season. According to STATS LLC, this is the first three-game series in major league history to feature five All-Star starting pitchers from the current season.

“It’s exciting,” said injured Chicago catcher Yasmani Grandal, who worked with these Brewers pitchers while playing for Milwaukee in 2019. “That’s what you want to see — having two young teams having high-caliber guys coming in and out every night, doing it at a high level and putting up the numbers they are.”

HILL ON THE HILL

Rich Hill is scheduled to make his debut with the NL East-leading New York Mets when they host Toronto.

The 41-year-old lefty was obtained in a trade with Tampa Bay on Friday for veteran pitcher Tommy Hunter and minor league catcher Matthew Dyer.

Hill bolsters a rotation that has been depleted by injuries, most notably ace Jacob deGrom being on the 10-day injured list with tightness in his right forearm.

Hill went 6-4 with a 3.87 ERA in 19 starts for the Rays this season. He faced Toronto on July 11 and gave up three runs on four hits and three walks in five innings.

TRYING TO AVOID A DIRTY DOZEN

The Texas Rangers will try to break their season-high 11-game losing streak when they send Taylor Hearn (2-3 4.70) to the mound to oppose Zack Greinke (9-3, 3.58) at Houston.

The losing streak is the third-longest in franchise history and the Rangers’ worst since they dropped 12 straight in 1982. Texas has lost nine games since the All-Star game and is the only team in the majors to go winless since the break.

The Rangers lost 4-1 Saturday, when they were held hitless until the eighth inning.

The Rangers have already been no-hit twice this season, by Joe Musgrove of the San Diego Padres on April 9 and Corey Kluber of the New York Yankees on May 19.

MISSING MAX

The Nationals expect ace Max Scherzer to make his next scheduled start after he was scratched with what the team described as mild right triceps discomfort.

Manager Dave Martinez said Scherzer had an MRI and it was “extremely clean.” Jon Lester started in Scherzer’s place Saturday night at Baltimore.

Scherzer is 7-4 with a 2.83 ERA in 18 starts this season. The three-time Cy Young Award winner, who turns 37 on Tuesday, has been the subject of trade speculation as Washington continues to struggle. His absence now is another issue for the Nationals rotation, which has been without Stephen Strasburg since early June because of lingering neck problems.

HUSTLING HARPER

Bryce Harper is 12 for 12 on steal attempts this season after his latest swipe for the Phillies.

The slugger stole third base on Saturday night against Atlanta, a day after stealing second, third and home in a win over the Braves.

This weekend marked the first time since September 2019 that Harper had stolen bases in consecutive games.

Harper’s career high for stolen bases in a season is 21, done in 2016 when he also was caught stealing 10 times for Washington.

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LEADING OFF: More All-Star starters in Chisox-Brewers set