He said, ‘We are not taking any team. We take every team seriously. We know that every team we face is a challenge for us, and we are going to perform and do our best by third baseman Yoan Moncada on Sunday through team interpreter Billy Russo. “This is the way we play the game, this is the way that (manager Rick Renteria) has taught us how we play the game, and we want to move forward with that philosophy and that mindset.
“It doesn’t matter which team we’re facing, we’re going to try our best and win the game.”
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They do not deserve criticism for their strict adherence to that philosophy. After all, he has won a lot of games. After a 5–2 win over the Detroit Tigers on Sunday, they are ranked 30–16, the best in the American League, trailing only the elite Los Angeles Dodgers for the best win-loss mark in baseball.
But they are also about to face their biggest test of their upstart 2020 campaign.
A vault has quickly come into contention mode for South Cider, which was wrapping up in an 89-loss season a year ago. Now, powered by AL’s top offense and a pair of top-of-the-line weapons at the front of the opening rotation, they look as good as winning any bet.
However this thinking will be brought to trial this week. The White Sox have beaten the league’s best record, mostly thanks to dominating the season series against the Tigers and Kansas City Royals. They won 18 of the 20 teams that accounted for nearly two-thirds of all 2020 wins.
Are they competing for the AL Central crown directly against the other two teams? Not so much. In a dozen combined games against the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians, the White Sox have won just four times, dropping all three of the three-match series.
The White Sox may not want to talk about it, claiming that they will treat four games against the Twins this week and four against the Indians a week later, in the same way they treated the Tigers and Royals’ recent sweeps. And of course they will try to do so. But the results have been very different at this point. And so whether they think they do or not, the White Sox really still have something to prove: can they beat good teams?
This season they have played only two other series, coming against winning clubs, one against the St. Louis Cardinals in the South and the other against the Crosstown-rival Cubs on the North Side. Roll all the games together against the Twins, Indians, Cardinals and Cubs, and the White Sox are a raucous 7-11.
If the season ends today, the White Sox will be the No. 1 seed in the AL playoff field. And it would not be anyone’s guess how they would fare in that series.
What this week is about – and the rest of the season, in fact, is about 11 of the final 14 games against the Twins, Indians and Cubs.
“As far as I’m concerned, the next 14 or 15 games are playoff games,” White Sox coach Frank Menchino said before Sunday’s game. “” These are playoff games, fellas. Let’s go out and do it like there’s a playoff, so when the playoff comes, we’re going to be the same. ‘
“If we focus on the next 14, 15 games, ‘Hey this is a playoff series, let’s go out there and do it,” it’s now a concentrated effort for about two weeks.
“You as a coach try to put it on your team, bring it to the attention of these people, say, ‘Hey, we have to start preparing. The bell has rung, it’s playoff baseball now. Let’s go for it. Let’s go and see how we do it. ‘”
It comes in the middle of the final month of the season in a two-month run as the White Sox did not answer questions about the last time they had a chance, a three-game set to be held in Minneapolis by the end of August Was in And the beginning of September. He won the first game of that series in a dramatic fashion and finished first in the calendar. Their offense then went to sleep for the final two matches against the quality Twins pitching staff throughout the season.
And it started with the series Twins having lost five matches. They are now the winners of 10 of their last 12 games, including a sweep on the Indians this weekend.
Meanwhile, the White Sox have continued to prevail against diminished competition, going 8–1 against the Royals, Pittsburgh Pirates and Tigers, leaving 10,000 lakes of land. They could stand in a similar situation where they were at the start of that last series against the twins, with the team in first place swinging some ferocious batsmen. But when expectations change during a win, they not only make the playoffs, but win in the playoffs, the answer to the question “Can they beat good teams?” Becomes very important.
No one should blame the White Sox for not taking on the Tigers or Royals. This is completely the right way. You are prepared for every game in every season, where you must discover the drive to exceed the sleepwalk through the game expected to win every game. And beating up on those below, heck, that’s what makes you a playoff. This is not good, it is necessary.
But an important four-game set against the Twins means more than winning a division title in a bizarre season where winning a division title doesn’t get you as much as in previous years. The team that rolls into the Guaranteed Rate field this week is good. And the White Sox still need to show that they can beat good teams on a regular basis, that they can win the series against good teams.
As October approaches, this is the only team they will face.
“We’re trying to play with everyone,” Renteria said. “I know we still have some big games, and we will keep trying to do the same thing.
“We just try to win last night. We are not changing our perspective. Take it one day at a time, one game at a time. We can try to do everything we can to put in the best chance of winning the ballgame, and then we will deal with the next one after that. ”