Long journey for White Sox begins
South Siders enter stretch of 26 games in 27 days
CHICAGO -- Beginning with Tuesday's home contest against the Yankees, the White Sox will play 26 games in the next 27 days.
Their next day off comes on May 1, in between trips to Minnesota and Toronto. Another break in the action won't follow until May 19.
But for a team sitting atop the American League Central, playing good early baseball in almost all aspects, being on the field every day just about qualifies as the ideal situation.
"One of the worst things that can happen when you are going well is to have a break," White Sox outfielder Brian Anderson said.
"I think so, especially the way we are playing on the road right now," added White Sox third baseman Joe Crede, when asked if having this lack of down time actually was a positive for the White Sox. "It's a challenge this team is ready to face."
The White Sox held a 4-3 home record and a 7-4 road mark entering Tuesday night, but as Crede pointed out, the South Siders will get quite a test away from home starting next week. They finish April with two games at the Metrodome and then start May with 14 of 17 games on the road.
That journey includes four games in Toronto, three in Seattle, four in Anaheim and three in San Francisco to open Interleague Play. Along with the balance exhibited by the White Sox, Crede believes the overall team camaraderie ultimately will make a difference.
"Everyone has come together really well," Crede said.
For the White Sox to survive through May, which includes six games in nine days against the Indians, manager Ozzie Guillen will need a full team effort. It means occasional starts for bench players such as Pablo Ozuna, Toby Hall, Alexei Ramirez and Anderson to give the regulars a respite, and it means better efforts from Anderson than his three-strikeout performance Sunday against Tampa Bay.
Anderson doesn't appear worried about being able to contribute, regardless of the frequency of opportunities.
"Sunday was a bad game, but it was the first time I've felt bad realistically since March 1, so I'm not going to be too hard on myself," Anderson said. "As the season goes on, it will be easier to come off the bench.
"Those [starters] are playing hard, and we have guys battling through nagging injuries. Any time I can give them a break ... I just have to make sure I'm ready."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.