With a 3-0 victory against the Astros on Thursday, the Yankees were able to salvage the finale and avoid being swept at home.
The Tigers' 1-0 loss to the Rays meant the Yankees gained a game in the American League Wild Card race, which they currently trail by four games. For now, the Yanks say they are not paying attention to who is ahead of them in the standings in a packed race.
"My bigger concern is us, not the other teams," manager Joe Girardi said. "Because if we don't win, it doesn't matter what the other teams do in front of us. My focus is still our club, and if we play really good baseball down the stretch, we have a shot."
The Yankees hope to fare better in a three-game series with the fourth-place White Sox, beginning Friday at Yankee Stadium, than they did against the Astros. Chicago has lost five straight at the new Stadium and is 5-12 in its short history. This is a chance for New York to make up ground even if the White Sox won't just roll over -- Robin Ventura still wants wins.
"It's pretty important," Chicago's manager said. "I'm not talking about effort. These guys are coming out and scratching and clawing to get it right. It has nothing to do with effort. I've been pleased with that."
This road trip is a brief one for the White Sox -- after three games, they'll return to U.S. Cellular Field -- and it will start with John Danks on the mound. Danks (9-8) has allowed 84 earned runs and 23 homers this season -- both of which lead the AL.
The Yankees counter with Shane Greene, who continued his impressive rookie season with six innings of two-run ball and 10 strikeouts in New York's win against the Rays on Saturday. Greene (3-1) brought his season ERA down to 2.91 with the effort.
Yankees: Tanaka's next step is to throw live BP
Masahiro Tanaka will throw live batting practice to hitters on Saturday as he continues to rehab the partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow.
After throwing breaking balls during a 35-pitch bullpen session on Wednesday, Tanaka reported no discomfort, so he has been cleared to move on to the next step. The Yankees are still trying to work out all the details of who he will face, but Tanaka is likely to throw at Yankee Stadium.
"Each step he increases intensity," said Girardi. "I'm sure BP will be a little bit more intense than bullpens."
White Sox: Eaton begins rehab
Adam Eaton's rehabilitation kicked off on Thursday with Triple-A Charlotte. The outfielder, who has been on the disabled list with a right oblique strain since Aug. 9, took batting practice before Chicago's 4-3 loss to the Orioles on Wednesday night.
Eaton will be eligible to return for Sunday's series finale with the Yankees, though general manager Rick Hahn doesn't expect it. Eaton should, however, be able to return for the start of next week's homestand.
Eaton's injury surfaced two days after running into a post in the U.S. Cellular Field wall while chasing a home run. Chicago doesn't want to totally change Eaton's aggressive style, just tone it down.
"Guys are going to get hurt, but I think there's ways for guys to manage it," Ventura said. "This is not a guy that's played 10 years, so he's got stuff that he'll learn as he goes along: How important he is to the team to when to run face-first into the wall and when not to when the ball's 10 feet over the fence. So, hopefully, he can learn that."
• Friday will mark the 52nd game started by a Yankees rookie pitcher, the most in the Major Leagues. The Yankees are 32-19 this season in games started by rookie pitchers.
• The White Sox are coming off their first sweep to the Orioles at home since 1995.
David Wilson and Jamal Collier are associate reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.