Sox show they might have fight after all

August, 29, 2011
8/29/11
10:05
PM CT
Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
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CHICAGO -- Inconsistency is what the Chicago White Sox have done best this season, but it’s no longer an option.

Needing to make up a five-game deficit in the AL Central standings, the White Sox, who beat the Minnesota Twins 3-0 on Monday, are left with no margin for error over their final 28 games if they have any designs on playing in the postseason.

[+] EnlargeMark Buehrle
Brian Kersey/Getty ImagesWhite Sox starter Mark Buehrle threw 7 2/3 shutout innings against the Twins on Monday.
“We need to win series and sweep a few,” said a blunt general manager Kenny Williams when asked for his latest thoughts on a disappointing team.

Teams have erased larger deficits over the final month of the season, so it’s not like White Sox are in an unprecedented situation. The reality, though, is that the job ahead is as hard as they come, especially for a club that hasn’t shown that it has a month of .700 baseball in it.

“We’re up against it,” Paul Konerko said. “There’s probably not another shift of momentum in a bad direction that we can probably recover from. We have that to be where we’re at and keep moving forward over the next (28) games.”

In those final 28 games are six with the first-place Tigers. Asked if the White Sox need to win all six against the Tigers Konerko said he would have to wait and see. Note that he didn’t say that winning all six wasn’t necessary.

“You have to assume Detroit is a good team,” Konerko said. “With the exception of when we play them, we have to assume they’re going to win. They’re a good team and they’re playing well. We have to go catch them. They’re not going to fall back to us.”

So it’s now or never for the White Sox, who are on a nice little head start with the current four-game win streak.

“One game at a time,” said Mark Buehrle, who led off the shutout with 7 2/3 scoreless innings. “We can’t get too far ahead. We have a couple more with Detroit and they are not going away. And they know we aren’t going to. Just keep going out there and battling.”

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Jose Abreu
BA HR RBI R
.299 31 83 56
OTHER LEADERS
HRJ. Abreu 31
RBIJ. Abreu 83
RJ. Abreu 56
OPSJ. Abreu .976
WC. Sale 10
ERAC. Sale 1.88
SOC. Sale 122