To accomplish this, the Cubs will need to change the luck of starter Matt Garza. To keep the White Sox on the winning side of things, manager Robin Ventura will hand the ball to young Zach Stewart, who will make his first start of the season after 17 appearances in the bullpen.
The way things have gone this season, it would appear that Garza needs to throw a shutout in order to pick up a win. The veteran right-hander hasn't won since April 29 despite mostly solid outings all season. June has seen Garza make three starts, going six innings in each and allowing seven earned runs. But his record is 0-2.
That can mainly be chalked up to the Cubs' struggling offense, which hasn't scored more than four runs in a game started by Garza since May 11, when the Cubs fell, 8-7, in Milwaukee. In fact, even though Garza has been solid, the team's record in his starts is 3-9.
The White Sox, meanwhile, have played good baseball all year, and it's no secret to Cubs manager Dale Sveum.
"They're obviously doing a nice job over there," Sveum said. "We're worried about day in and day out with us and winning ballgames every single day, no matter who we're playing. We know there will be a different atmosphere when we play the White Sox, especially after getting swept here.
"Hopefully we come out and prove we're capable of competing with a first-place team. We seem to have played a little better with those teams over the course of the year -- the Braves and Dodgers and even the Tigers. We just have to play good baseball, that's the bottom line."
Meanwhile, Stewart has struggled as a reliever, posting a 5.18 ERA in 17 games. He's allowed six home runs in 24 1/3 innings. Things have been particularly rough of late. In his last four outings, Stewart has allowed seven runs on nine hits -- including two home runs -- in 6 2/3 innings, good for a 8.10 ERA.
Stewart has started before, though. He's made 11 career starts, all last year, with both the White Sox and the Blue Jays. He is 2-6 as a starter with a 6.00 ERA, nearly a run higher than his ERA as a reliever.
"It's nice. It's a change from what I've been doing," Stewart said. "But I've had experience doing it, so it's not going to be anything too surprising, just try to go back in the same routine as last year and pick up from there."
Cubs: June not great for Castro
Shortstop Starlin Castro might have snapped out of a June swoon on Sunday night. Castro was hitting just .206 (13-for-63) in 15 June games with 17 strikeouts and just one walk prior to Sunday, but he went 3-for-4 with a double and triple in the Cubs' loss to Boston.
In his career against the White Sox, outfielder Alfonso Soriano is batting .263 with a .300 on-base percentage. He's hit 15 career home runs against the South Siders and driven in 35 runs. Soriano will be the designated hitter in all three games for the Cubs. He did very well in the role vs. the Twins in Minnesota, going 6-for-13 with three homers and six RBIs.
White Sox: Dunn goes deep
Designated hitter Adam Dunn leads the Majors with 23 home runs, and he has also launched seven homers in Interleague Play this season, which trails only Minnesota's Trevor Plouffe, who has hit eight home runs against National League opponents.
First baseman Paul Konerko is another Interleague star. He ranks second all-time with 56 Interleague home runs and third all-time with 160 RBIs.
"His mechanics don't allow him to fall into slumps," Sveum said of Konerko. "He's a great fastball hitter. That's the telltale of a hitter who can succeed, and especially later in his career, is that he can still hit the fastball. He's always going to be able to revert back to that. When you're a good fastball hitter, you don't get in slumps that much because you don't have to worry about bat speed."
The Sox hold a 48-39 edge over the Cubs in the all-time series, including a 25-17 mark at U.S. Cellular Field. They have won seven of the last eight games against the North Siders, including a three-game sweep at Wrigley Field this season.
Garza has had the advantage against White Sox outfielder Alex Rios, with Rios batting just .200 against the righty in his career. On the other hand, Konerko has hit Garza well, picking up six hits -- including a pair of home runs -- in 12 at-bats.