When the New York Yankees welcomed the Chicago White Sox for a three-game series, Yankee fans knew that it’d be an important series. The White Sox entered the series with a 26-16 record, one of the best in MLB and as the favorite to win the AL Central division. So far, the series has gone exactly according to plan for the Yankees, winning both games and allowing just one total run.
Friday’s victory over the White Sox was an early contender for the game of the season for the Yankees. Gleyber Torres drove in both runs, including a ninth-inning walk-off single and a home run earlier in the game. Jordan Montgomery fired seven shutout innings for the Yankees, and the team even turned an around-the-horn 5-4-3 triple play.
On Saturday, Gleyber Torres continued his post-COVID-19 diagnosis tear. Torres drove in four of the Yankees’ seven runs while going 3-for-4. After a terrible start to the season, Torres has elevated his average up to .268 with a .708 OPS. Gerrit Cole shoved, pitching seven scoreless innings and punching out seven.
This sets the Yankees up for a sweep opportunity on Sunday. However, the Yankees have Jameson Taillon on the mound, the one starter who hasn’t quite hit his stride yet. Taillon has a 5.73 ERA with a 1.27 WHIP in eight starts. He does, however, have a 3.00 ERA at home, so that could potentially play a factor in Sunday’s game.
Taillon also has a lot of pressure on him built up by the other Yankee pitchers. Yankee starting pitching hasn’t allowed a run since Tuesday, which was the last time that Taillon pitched. He’d love the continue the streak of scoreless outings, but he’ll have to overcome the elevated pressure.
And finally, this game is incredibly important for the Yankees’ position in the AL East. The team has won five games in a row, however, the Rays have countered it with a nine-game winning streak and the Red Sox have as well with a four-game winning streak.
The Yankees have had a difficult time sweeping series this season, however, they have a great opportunity to finally do so on Sunday.