Chicago White Sox Begin Huge Six-Game Homestand Monday

Midwest Sports FansAnalyst IAugust 17, 2009

SEATTLE - AUGUST 12:  Mark Buehrle #56 of the Chicago White Sox pitches during the game against the Seattle Mariners on August 12, 2009 at Safeco Field in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Much was made of the recent six-game West Coast trip that faced the Chicago White Sox. As any Sox fan knows, Chicago typically struggles out West, especially at Oakland. For that reason, a 3-3 split against the Mariners and A’s is actually palatable.

What is frustrating is that it should have been a 4-2 trip, but the White Sox could not hold a 2-1 lead in the eighth inning yesterday after another solid pitching outing from John Danks.

But the White Sox did steal one in the ninth last Tuesday against Seattle, when Alexei Ramirez cracked a three-run homer in the top of the inning, so I guess you could say Sunday’s loss was just the road trip evening itself out.

What faces the White Sox this week is, on the surface, much less intimidating than last week’s West Coast swing and the impending road trip against Boston, New York, and Minnesota.

The White Sox go back home for three against the cellar-dwelling Royals, an off day, and then three more against the cellar-dwelling Orioles. Sitting 2.5 games behind Detroit with 44 games left to play, this is a huge opportunity for the White Sox to quit flirting with .500 and get to six or seven games over.

Expecting anything more than a split next week is probably wishful thinking, so the White Sox need to take it upon themselves to string together some victoriesand some breathing roomagainst teams that they should beat at home this week.

Mark Buehrle kicks off the homestand today against Brian Bannister, and Mr. Perfect needs to fulfill his role as staff ace and get the White Sox off on the right foot. 

With the most difficult stretch of the season beginning one week from today, the White Sox cannot afford to waste this opportunity.