What if I told you that the White Sox played more average baseball this week – would you believe it? Well, they did. Entering Monday’s 4-game series with the Indians, Chicago sat at 14-18 (15-18 as I’m getting this out Tuesday morning). Their 4-game below average record is good enough for fourth in the A.L. Central. They sit 6 games behind the Minnesota Twins, who apparently can’t lose. Over this past week, our boys went 3-4, dropping 3 of 4 to the Red Sox and winning 2 of 3 over the lowly Orioles.
Delmonico has been getting some solid work in the lineup since Eloy Jimenez went to the IL with an ankle injury last week. I really like Nicky and I hope he finds some role with the club. The outfield seems crowded with average guys gunning for a spot. This past week, Delmonico went 5-16 (.313) and drove in 3 RBI’s. All 3 of those RBI’s came on one swing of the bat, a walkoff bomb to lift the Sox over Boston on May 2nd.
Eloy Jimenez & Carlos Rodon
The rebuild has definitely seen some hiccups over the last couple of years, so would you be surprised if we didn’t have some more issues? The Sox had to send Eloy Jimenez and Carlos Rodon to the IL this past week. Whenever I watch Eloy in the outfield, only one phrase comes to mind – designated hitter. The guy is terrible in the field and his lack of awareness in the outfield grass ended up putting him on the IL. A little over a week ago he was trying to track a fly ball and jumped up into the wall attempting to rob a homerun – he banged into the wall and came away with a high ankle sprain. He should be back in a few days as he made the trip to Cleveland with the team.
Carlos Rodon on the other hand, I don’t think he is going to be back any time soon. Nothing is certain about his injury but one doctor suggested Tommy John surgery. Please, please, please don’t be TJ surgery – that would really set the Sox back as Carlos wouldn’t be back until like mid-2020. This is one that you’ll have to follow up on, and if there are any updates, I will throw it in my White Sox Weekly article next week.
Overall Analysis & The Week Ahead
It’s frustrating being a White Sox fan. It seems that we’re only a couple pieces away from contending and running away with this “not very good” A.L. Central. As well as adding a couple of arms and maybe two more bats, we are plagued with injuries I feel like! Kopech is still recovering from his Tommy John surgery – as are Dane Dunning and Zack Burdi. So the main thing I am looking forward to for the rest of the year is for the core guys – Moncada, Abreu, T.A., and co. to continue developing and progressing.
This week, the Sox play the Indians in a 4-game set. I’m a day late getting this up, so we’re already 1-0 in the series after Moncada rocked Trevor Bauer – going 2-4 in the game with a dinger and collecting 4 RBI’s. Sidenote – that’s great for my fantasy team. After the 4-game set against the depleted starting rotation and questionable offense of Believeland, the Sox will stay on the road, taking on the Blue Jays. Chicago is in the middle of a stretch that has them playing 15 games in 14 days.
I expect the Sox to actually take 3 out of 4 over the Indians. I would have said a 2-2 split, but after getting a surprisingly decent outing from Ivan Nova and hammering Bauer, we’re already up 1-0. As for the Jays, they traded Pillar earlier in the season so it looked like they were already giving up on the year. And how can we not mention Vlad Jr. getting called up a week and a half ago? The 15-20 club seems to be lost right now, but Vladdy is the bright spot for them moving forward. I’m going to take a risk and say that the White Sox grind out two wins on that trip, putting them at 5-2 for this week. Am I just optimistic, probably? Realistically, if Cleveland wants to capture the Central again, they’ll win two or three of the remaining games and the Blue Jays, on the home turf, will grab two of three. But we’ll see how it plays out, that’s why we love baseball and especially the Chicago White Sox.