How Good Will The White Sox Be This Year?
By Al Zipsie
Let's get this out of the way first. I am a White Sox fan.
However, I know the Southsiders are a few years away from the potential of being a contender.
While the White Sox had a fire sale last year. It has led to many young promising players. How many will become stars? The Sox are following the model of the Cubs rebuild. That turned out with a fairy tale World Series season.
So I will predict a Cubs and White Sox subway all Chicago World Series in 2020.
The trades have given the Sox maybe the best farm system in the major leagues.
Only time will tell if the talent is ready now or a few years away. Outfielders 20-year-old Luis Robert from Cuba, and power bat in Eloy Jimenez who came over on a rare crosstown trade with the Cubs.
The ChiSox have two mainstays as role models for the youth movement. First baseman Jose Abreu had a strong second half of the season and right fielder Avisail Garcia who was an all-star for the first time.
A young player ready now is second baseman Yoan Moncada who came from the Red Sox on the Chris Sale trade. Tim Anderson is at shortstop and at catcher Welington Castillo in free agency after hitting twenty homers with the Orioles.
Young pitchers who hope to be ready as starters in Lucas Giolito, Carson Fulmer, Reynaldo Lopez and Michael Kopech who has hit 110 mph on the radar. Others hoping to make the rotation are veteran James Shields and Charles Rodon who is recovering from shoulder surgery in September.
The bullpen was mostly all traded away. Brought in to fill the void are Joakim Soria and Luis Avilan who joined the Sox in late season trades. Nate Jones hopes to return from an injury.
The outfield last year produced a major league first. All three outfielders with the same last name. In this case Garcia's. Avaisail, Willy, and Leury. The outfield this year is wide open with the Garcia's, Nick Delmonico, Adam Engle, Ryan Cordell and Charlie Tilson who missed last season with an injury.
Third base is a battle with Matt Davidson, Yolmer Sanchez, and Tyler Saladino. The top draft pick from 2017 Jake Burger suffered a ruptured Achilles in spring training and is out for the season.
The White Sox Cactus share their Cactus League spring training home with the Los Angeles Dodgers at Camelback Ranch in Glendale. The White Sox open the season March 29th at Kansas City.