The Chicago White Sox just finished the hardest part of their entire 162 game schedule. 14 games against the New York Yankees, Oakland A’s, Tampa Bay Rays, and Toronto Blue Jays are now in the rearview. We knew it was going to be tough and that the White Sox needed to grind through it.
All of them are very good and present a major challenge to anyone playing them on any given night. The White Sox went 7-7 in that stretch. It would have been nice to see them go over .500 in that span but nobody should be complaining.
Now, the schedule lightens up a little bit in terms of the opponent on paper but that doesn’t mean it isn’t hard. In fact, playing against the Chicago Cubs is incredibly hard for the White Sox no matter what year it is. In 2021, the Cubs happen to be bad and the White Sox happen to be really good.
This weekend is the second matchup of the season between the two. The White Sox swept the Cubs earlier this season at Wrigley Field and hope to have a similar level of success at home. Regardless of where either team is in the standings, they always come to play each other hard.
The Cubs we have come to know over the past decade are gone. Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez, and Kris Bryant are all gone. The White Sox played them earlier this year and they were already gone but it hadn’t sunk in yet. This time around, things feel a little bit more real on that side of town. They have seen some new players come in and play well but they won’t be going to the playoffs this year.
The Chicago White Sox and Chicago Cubs are always going to have fun matchups.
This is a series that the White Sox should be able to win. Unfortunately, games aren’t won on paper. They are going to need everyone’s best in order to get it done. It starts with the first pitching matchup of the series. That is tonight when Dallas Keuchel faces Keegan Thompson. This is an opportunity for the White Sox to see something good from Keuchel.
Later in the series, Lance Lynn will face Alec Mills. After that, Dylan Cease will face Kyle Hendricks. Obviously, the latter is the premier matchup of the weekend. It is going to be a lot of fun seeing these guys compete. In the first two games, despite Keuchel’s struggles, the White Sox have the advantage on the mound. The third game will be a sweet duel.
Of course, there is always one White Sox hitter to keep an eye on this series. That is Eloy Jimenez. He loves facing his former team so much. It is good for the White Sox in more ways than one but the most important is that he helps them win baseball games.
It is always fun when the two Chicago fans meet at either stadium. In reality, however, the White Sox just need to keep winning games. They want to have home-field advantage as deep into the playoffs as they could get it. With the schedule coming up, they should be able to really start grinding out lots of wins. This is more than just a big series against the crosstown rivals.