With 28 of their first 34 games against American League Central opponents next season, the White Sox will be challenged early and often where they’ve struggled mightily since 2009 – in their own division.
Starting with the season opener against the Detroit Tigers at home April 3 (a Monday, 3:10 p.m. start) and continuing with a series against the Minnesota Twins, the Sox will dive right into a division in which they were 27-37 going into Wednesday’s game against the Cleveland Indians. The Sox are 253-327 against the Central since 2009, with their only winning record coming in 2012 (37-35), manager Robin Ventura’s first season.
“You start the season with a schedule like that, it will be like, ‘All right, game time,’ ’’ infielder Tyler Saladino said.
“We’ll see where we’re at right from jump street,” third baseman Todd Frazier said. “You have to play them eventually, so why not see where we’re at? Let’s get after it.”
In the Sox’ encouraging 23-10 start this season, they went 6-0 against the lowly Twins and split two games with the Indians. They opened by winning three of four on the road against the Oakland Athletics, the last place team in the AL West.
They will open against Detroit for the first time since 1963.
As they did in 2016, the Sox again will play the Cubs in the Crosstown Classic on four consecutive weekday dates, on July 24-25 at Wrigley Field and July 26-27 at what will be newly-named Guaranteed Rate Field.
Other Sox interleague matchups with the National League (West Division): San Diego Padres May 12-14 at home, at Arizona May 22-24, home against San Francisco September 8-10, Colorado July 7-9 at Coors Field, and the Los Angeles Dodgers July 18-19 at home and August 15-16 at Dodger Stadium.
The first road trip, April 11-19, goes through Cleveland, Minnesota and Yankee Stadium. It’s the first of five three-city trips, compared to three of such length this season. The Sox close the season with three games at Cleveland Sept. 30 through Oct. 1
The 2017 schedule is tentative and subject to change. Finalized game times and a complete broadcast schedule will be released at a later date.