Monday, March 5, 2018
Chicago White Sox 2018 season preview
After a massive offseason of blowing up their roster, the Chicago White Sox finished 4th in the AL Central with a 67-95 record, 14th in the AL. To continue the rebuilding phase, the Sox had some work to do. Let's take a look at their offseason.
Notable additions: C Welington Castillo, RHP Joakim Soria, LHP Luis Avilan, RHP Miguel Gonzalez, RHPs Bruce Rondon, Jeanmar Gomez, LHPs Xavier Cedeno, Robbie Ross Jr., Hector Santiago.
Notable subtractions: LHP Derek Holland, OF Cody Asche, Cs Rob Brantly, Geovany Soto.
What they did well: Despite being rebuilders, the Sox added in the offseason, and got some relievers for redemption like Rondon, Gomez and Soria. If they can play like they have in their career, they could make a solid pickup for the Sox. Also, Castillo is a good, underrated catcher.
What they did bad: Nothing really. They lose much, and didn't sign any bad deals or make bad trades. It was a good offseason for them.
Sneaky Sleeper: In his first full season, Tim Anderson wasn't too bad, with 17 homers and 15 stolen bases in 606 PAs. Give more time to the 24 year old, and he could succeed.
Incoming outbreak: Almost their whole team could qualify here. I'll go with the oft-injured Carlos Rodon, The only starter left out of their 2015 rotation that included Chris Sale, Jose Quintana and John Danks, Rodon still hasn't made a huge impact. Over his three year career, Rodon has been a solid pitcher with a 3.95 ERA and 383 strikeouts in 373.2 innings. This could be the year he breaks through.
Unsuspecting Slump: A couldn't find many players to pin this on, but with Yoan Moncada returning, it'll be harder for Yolmer Sanchez to get a lot of ABs. In 2017, Sanchez had his best year yet, after announcing he'll go by Yolmer, instead of Carlos, his middle name. Sanchez hit 12 homers and .267 in 2017, But will fight with Matt Davidson for the 3B job. I don't think he'll win.
Blue-chip Bopper: DHe's really their only good player. Arguably a top three 1B (I say he's 4th behind Paul Goldschmidt, Freddie Freeman and Joey Votto), Jose Abreu had another good season in 2017. He hit 33 homers, and 100 RBIs in 675 Plate Appearances. He also hit .304. Over his four year career, Abreu has hit .301, and 100 RBIs in each season, totaling for 410. Also, he's hit 124 career homers. By far, he's their best player.
Astounding ace: You know it's a problem when your closer, who's not even a top 10 reliever, is your best pitcher. But, that's the case for the White Sox. With everyone traded, Nate Jones is their best pitcher. Since he's barely pitched due to injuries, he hasn't proven much. But, in his career consisting of 251 innings, Jones has a solid 3.12 ERA and 276 strikeouts. It may not seem like much, but I think he's overlooked a lot.
Here is the White Sox's projected roster, starting with their lineup.
LF Leury Garcia (S)
SS Tim Anderson (R)
1B Jose Abreu (R)
RF Avisail Garcia (R)
3B Matt Davidson (R)
2B Yoan Moncada (S)
C Welington Castillo (R)
DH Yolmer Sanchez (S)
CF Adam Engel (R)
Here's their rotation.
LHP Carlos Rodon
RHP Lucas Giolito
RHP Reynaldo Lopez
RHP Miguel Gonzalez
RHP James Shields
Nate Jones (R) is their closer, with Joakim Soria (R), Luis Avilan (L), Juan Minaya (R), Danny Farquhar (R), Xavier Cedeno (L), Bruce Rondon (R) and Jeanmar Gomez (R) in the bullpen.
C Omar Narvaez (L), INF Tyler Saladino (R) and OF Nicky Delmonico (L) are on the bench.
Finally, for my prediction, I think the White Sox, a rebuilding team, will not make the playoffs in 2017.