Fresh off an exhilarating game in the cornfields of Iowa, the New York Yankees and host Chicago White Sox will return to business as usual when they meet Saturday evening.
The teams made the trip from Dyersville, Iowa, to Chicago’s South Side after taking part in Thursday’s inaugural “Field of Dreams” game. The setting did not disappoint as the teams combined for eight homers that disappeared into the corn, including a walk-off blast by Tim Anderson to give the White Sox a 9-8 win.
“Once I made contact, I knew it was over, I knew it was out,” Anderson said. “These are the moments you want to be in. These big games like this, this is the time to show up.”
The next game is big for both teams, even if it will not take place near a famed movie set.
The White Sox sit 20 games over .500 with a comfortable lead in the American League Central division. Chicago has won five of its past seven games as it looks to head into the home stretch on a hot streak.
Meanwhile, New York had won seven of its last nine games before Thursday’s heartbreaking loss. The Yankees scored four runs in the top of the ninth to go ahead 8-7, but Anderson wiped out their comeback attempt with one swing against left-handed reliever Zack Britton.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone said his players would need to bounce back quickly from the Iowa trip.
“That ruined it a little bit, honestly,” Boone said. “We’re here with business to do and these games are huge. It sucks to walk in here after a tough loss, after it looked like you stole it back. But that said, it was as special and breathtaking a setting for a baseball game that I can ever remember being a part of.”
On Saturday, the Yankees will turn to right-hander Jameson Taillon (7-4, 3.82 ERA). He is coming off back-to-back quality starts, including his last outing when he allowed one unearned run on four hits in six innings against the Kansas City Royals.
Taillon has won six decisions in a row and has not lost a game during his past 12 starts. His last defeat came May 31 against the Tampa Bay Rays.
In two career starts against the White Sox, Taillon is 0-0 with a 1.69 ERA.
Chicago will counter with right-hander Dylan Cease (9-6, 3.99 ERA). The 25-year-old has won each of his past two starts, including Sunday against the Chicago Cubs when he struck out 10 over five innings.
On the season, Cease has racked up 159 strikeouts in 119 2/3 innings. He has walked 49 batters in that span.
This will be Cease’s second career start against the Yankees. He is hoping for better results after giving up five runs on five hits in 4 1/3 innings in his first start against New York on May 22.
One player Cease will have to watch out for is Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, who is coming off a two-homer performance Thursday. Judge is hitting .282 with a team-high 25 homers and 59 RBIs in 101 games.
–Field Level Media