CHICAGO – On Thursday and Friday, it could have been the highpoint of the rebuild so far.
The White Sox rallied from a four-run deficit to beat the Yankees – the first place team in the AL East – on Thursday evening in dramatic fashion. On Friday, Lucas Giolito’s incredible winning streak continued on the mound while Eloy Jimenez’s smacked a pair of homer in another victory.
Big crowds saw big moments for the team as they reached the .500 mark in mid-June – quite an accomplishment due to the painstaking rebuild by the franchise since the early winter of 2016.
Things cooled off a bit the next two nights.
Reynaldo Lopez allowed five earned runs and the Yankees jumped out to a 7-0 lead and didn’t look back in an 8-4 victory. Sunday went about the same, even when the White Sox got the early lead, as Odrisamer Despaigne struggled in his latest start, allowing seven earned runs in a 10-3 defeat to New York.
So in the end, the White Sox settled for the split in what seemed early like a potential break-through weekend. The team sits two-games below .500 at the end of it, exactly where the started with on Thursday.
While the last two efforts weren’t great, the White Sox decided not to sulk in the finish but rather take the split as an accomplishment.
“I don’t know if you can say that’s great but we played some good ballgames at the beginning of the series,” said outfielder Ryan Cordell of the four games with the Yankees. “We’re still confident we’re playing really good ball; good defense, putting up runs. Yeah, we’re still confident.”
They felt that way early when Jose Abreu hit his 17th homer of the year of James Paxton to give the White Sox an early lead. But it wouldn’t last, as the Yankees got to Despaigne for five earned runs in the second and two more in the third to blow it open.
James McCann provided the positive after that, knocking in a run in the fifth with a single and then another with his sixth homer of the season. It continues his breakthrough offensive season (.324 average, 20 RBI) and he believes the White Sox still had plenty of positives even with a pair of duds to end the Yankees series.
After all, the White Sox won the season series with New York 4-3 thanks to a series win in the Bronx back in April.
“It’s something we reminded each other,” said McCann of the fact they won more games against the Yankees. “We took a season series from a team that’s one of the best in baseball. It’s not the way you wanted to finish today but overall you’ve got to be happy with taking a season series from a team like that.”
That opinion could be shared among many fans, considering that little positives are welcome ones as the rebuild continues.