The popular narrative surrounding the Chicago White Sox right now is their ability to play against good teams. Earlier in the season and against the New York Yankees in general, that was a fair thing to worry about. However, they just defeated the Oakland A’s 3-1 in a four-game series. They have also defeated the Tampa Bay Rays, Toronto Blue Jays, and Houston Astros in three-game series 2-1 in recent weeks. This recent one against the A’s should make them feel very good going forward.
Well, the test is going to continue this weekend against the Rays again. This time, however, it is going to be down in Tampa where they are awesome. The Rays are right there with the White Sox for the best home record at 39-22. The White Sox are 29-28 on the road so they would like to see that number climb up.
They showed against the A’s that they can win little mismatches like that. They took three out of four from them at Guaranteed Rate Field when the A’s had the second-best road record in the league. It is fair to have confidence in this White Sox team. They didn’t even have Luis Robert or Eloy Jimenez when they played the Rays last month.
This time, the White Sox won’t have to face Tyler Glasnow as he is out with an injury. In fact, Glasnow’s injury was sustained in his most recent start against the White Sox. Just because Glasnow isn’t there, however, doesn’t mean that the White Sox won’t face good pitching.
The Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays should be able to put on a show.
The White Sox are scheduled to use Lucas Giolito, Dallas Keuchel, and Reynaldo Lopez. Rodon will miss this series but he should be back in time for the Blue Jays. In the meantime, Lopez has done a really good job. You know that you should get a quality start from Giolito and Keuchel on most days. Hopefully, all of them can be at their best. You can expect to see lots of Michael Kopech, Craig Kimbrel, and Liam Hendriks if they are often winning late.
As for the Rays, the White Sox are scheduled to face Michael Wacha, Luis Patino, and then Sunday is to be determined. Unless Sunday’s starter has an ERA under 1.08, they will have a starter ERA advantage in all three games.
One area of concern is the Nelson Cruz factor. Everyone was happy when he was traded away from the Minnesota Twins because the White Sox would have him out of the division but being on the Rays is much worse at this point. Hopefully, the White Sox are able to somewhat contain him in this series. That could be a big key to their series success. Either way, this is going to be a fun series to watch between two juggernauts.