Cueto set to return in ‘playoff-type' series vs. Guardians


After missing last weekend’s series in Detroit due to a non-COVID illness, White Sox starter Johnny Cueto is set to start Thursday’s series finale against the Guardians.

Cueto was scratched from his scheduled start Saturday and did not feel well enough to pitch Sunday.

“I felt weak, and my vision wasn’t right,” Cueto said through a team interpreter. "I had body aches too.”

Davis Martin filled in admirably for Cueto on Saturday, tossing six innings of one-run ball in an extra-inning win over the Tigers.

Cueto said he’s feeling better now and is ready for his outing — the finale of a pivotal series for the White Sox in the AL Central race.

The Sox entered Tuesday four games behind the first-place Guardians, and Cleveland needs just one win to clinch the season series and division tiebreaker over the Sox. 

A series loss would be crushing, and realistically the Sox need a sweep at least to secure the tiebreaker, not to mention cut away at the Guardians' division lead.

They're sending three of their top starters to the hill in Dylan Cease, Lance Lynn and Cueto. 

“This is a playoff-type series for us,” said Cueto, who has a 3.09 ERA in 22 games/21 starts this season. 

“Whoever plays better is going to win and hopefully it's going to be us. We have to play better than them and it's going to be on the field [where] we’re gonna see the results.”

While the stakes are high, they're taking things one day at a time.

"We’ve got to play one game at a time," acting manager Miguel Cairo said pregame Tuesday. "Today our concentration is on this game and how we’re going to attack the pitcher. Just one game at a time."

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