This week’s names and numbers in baseball:
WHITE SOX NINE TO KNOW
1. Ron Kittle watch: Ron Kittle was the Rookie of the Year in 1983 and set the Sox record for a rookie with 35 homers. He had 12 through 44 games. Jose Abreu had 12 in his first 35 games.
2. Smead Jolley watch: Jolley (whose name I love to write) holds the Sox rookie record for RBI with 114 in 1930. He had 12 through 44 games. Abreu had 35 in his first 35 games. Smead had 23 in 35 games.
3. Sox and Rangers pitchers through Wednesday had produced 32 double plays, the most in the American League.
4. Alejandro De Aza’s .186 batting average was the same as the Cardinals’ pitchers.
5. That three-run double by Paul Konerko on Wednesday means that in 228 plate appearances with the sacks full, Konerko had driven home 178 as a result of 10 slams, 16 doubles and a .316 batting average.
6. Through Wednesday, Sox pitchers had only struck out 21 batters in the first inning; only the Twins’ 19 whiffs were fewer.
7. Through Wednesday, Sox starters had walked 82 and Sox relievers had walked 70, both most in the majors.
8. So what if the Sox pitchers are 0-11 at the plate? Mets pitchers are 0-58.
9. For pitchers, 8.3 percent of all plate appearances end in a walk, which happens to be the Cubs’ staff percentage. The Sox’ rate is 11.0 percent, worst in the majors.
CUBS NINE TO KNOW
1. Anthony Rizzo is hitting .371 at Wrigley this season. The Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera led the majors in home hitting last season at .366. Rizzo led the Cubs last season, hitting .252 in the Friendly Confines.
2. Heading into action Saturday, Jeff Samardzija (1.120) had a lower WHIP than the Blue Jays’ Mark Buehrle (1.170), who had six wins, and the Dodgers’ Zack Greinke (1.122), who had five.
3. Homage to Hot Doug: In 1997, Doug Glanville hit an even .300 for the Cubs.
4. In 10.1 innings at home, Hector Rondon has struck out 11 but allowed 11 hits.
5. Cubs right fielders have drawn just six walks this season, the fewest in the National League.
6. In their first 32 games, the Cubs were 10-2 when leading after six innings, 1-16 when trailing and 0-3 when tied. You’d better hope they are leading going to the seventh.
7. Cubs pitchers have allowed a baserunner on third to score 37 times with less than two outs — exactly the league average.
8. The Cubs have had a runner on first 52 times when a single has been hit, and only 11 times the runner has reached third, tied for second fewest in the majors.
9. The Cubs are averaging 3.96 pitches per plate appearance, the most in the NL.
Chicago player anagram (scroll down for answer)
chuckle riser: This Big Daddy of the Cubs will celebrate his 65th birthday on Friday.
The Week ahead: I’m feeling a little queasy about the Cubs heading to St. Louis for four and then coming home to face the Brewers for three. The Sox start a nine-game road swing with three in Oakland and three in Houston.