Chicago Cubs right-hander Marcus Stroman beamed after his most recent start about the spark Patrick Wisdom and Greg Schwindel provide to the middle of the order.
“Those guys got some real serious pop,” Stroman said. “I think the other guys are going to feed off of that.”
On Saturday, Wisdom and Schwindel combined for three hits and four RBIs to fuel the visiting Cubs’ 5-1 victory against the crosstown rival Chicago White Sox.
With Stroman on the mound Sunday, the duo will try to keep the momentum going as the Cubs attempt to sweep the two-game interleague series.
The White Sox had won seven straight interleague games, including a pair of contests at Wrigley Field on May 3-4, before the Cubs earned Saturday’s victory behind a 10-hit attack.
The White Sox fell to 5-9 against the Cubs at Guaranteed Rate Field since the 2016 season. Still, the South Siders have won 11 of the past 16 games between the clubs.
The White Sox have lost three of four to begin a five-game homestand. They collected seven hits Saturday, although the punch predominantly came from the bottom of the order. Chicago’s No. 1-5 hitters went a combined 1 for 17 with six strikeouts.
White Sox third baseman Yoan Moncada remains day-to-day with a left-quad injury.
Stroman (2-4, 4.71 ERA) hopes to close a standout May in which he has won two of three decisions while pitching to a 2.12 ERA. He is 2-4 with a 4.85 ERA in nine career starts against the White Sox, with 38 strikeouts in 52 innings.
Fellow righty Dylan Cease (4-2, 4.24) will get the call for the White Sox as he faces his former organization. Cease, a former Cubs prospect who came to the White Sox in a 2017 trade, is 2-2 with a 4.57 ERA in four career starts against the Cubs, with 31 strikeouts in 21 2/3 innings.
Cease is coming off his shortest start of the season. He allowed seven runs and eight hits in three innings against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday, with two walks and four strikeouts.
“You make 30-some starts and you are going to have some where your location is not good,” White Sox manager Tony La Russa said. “And he just wasn’t sharp, and they were ready to hit and made him pay.”
Jake Burger had three hits for the White Sox on Saturday, including a solo home run. He has two homers in his past three games.
Cubs right fielder Seiya Suzuki (sprained left finger) underwent evaluation Saturday after leaving Thursday’s game. The team is expected to decide Sunday whether to move Suzuki to the 10-day injured list.
“It’s just sore and swollen and stiff,” team president Jed Hoyer said. “You hope you can avoid it.”
Center fielder Luis Robert remains on the COVID-19 injured list and out for the White Sox. It’s unclear whether he’ll join the team on its upcoming trip to Toronto.
–Field Level Media