All of us are about to see what the 2014 Chicago White Sox are truly made of.
With Monday being an off day, the White Sox (33-37) are about to begin what will be 16 games in 16 days, with 11 of those 16 games being on the road, including four straight in Toronto.
Here is what the schedule looks like for the White Sox for the next 16 days, starting on Tuesday, June 17 (overall records are following June 15 games):
• June 17-18 vs. San Francisco Giants (43-27, first-place NL West)
• June 19-22 at Minnesota Twins (32-35, fourth-place AL Central)
• June 23-25 at Baltimore Orioles (35-33, second-place AL East)
• June 26-29 at Toronto Blue Jays (41-30, first-place AL East)
• June 30-July 2 vs. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (37-31, second-place AL West)
This schedule is scary, especially with how the “Good Guys” played over the weekend against the Kansas City Royals, a three-game series where they had just 26 hits and 10 walks. A series where they were swept.
The upcoming slate of 16 straight games couldn’t come at a worse time for this ball club for the fact besides Chris Sale, none of the other four starters recently have been that dependable. The back end of the rotation of Andre Rienzo and Hector Noesi, have been less reliable than most.
Looking at some team stats from this season, the most games the White Sox have been over the .500 mark this year is two and their current record of being four games under the .500 mark is the lowest they’ve been all season, as they are currently on their longest losing streak of the season at four games.
On a positive note, the ’14 White Sox have five more wins than they did at this point last year. In ’13 the White Sox were 28-38 on June 16, 2013.
But back to this upcoming slate of games, this could make or break the entire direction of the season. If the team can come out of this stretch of games at 8-8 or even better in the next 16 games then there is still a chance for this ball club to compete for the postseason.
If they play like they have in the past few games and at other low-points this season, well we could be seeing some of the veterans packing their bags and headed elsewhere.
I believe these next 16 games will most definitely set the tone for the remainder of the season.
None of the upcoming series will be easy, especially with four of the five teams having overall winning records, and two of them with 40-plus wins and being first place in their respective divisions.
When the White Sox face the Giants on Tuesday and Wednesday this week, they will face Matt Cain and Tim Hudson, which isn’t an easy task. Chicago will bring John Danks to oppose Cain and Sale to face off with Hudson, in yet another must-watch game of the season.
After that series the White Sox face the Twins who they are 2-1 against this season, and they have yet to face the Orioles or Blue Jays in ’14. The 16-games stretch will end when they face the Angels, whom they are 0-3 against this season, being outscored 18-11.
Last season the White Sox were 3-4 against the Orioles and 4-3 against the Orioles.
The next 16 games will be interesting to say the least. We know it will be a tone-setter for the remainder of the season, and however the team finishes will probably decide the path the team takes for the rest of ’14.