By this time I really felt like we’d be talking about a three team race in the AL Central, but instead it’s turned into two thoroughbreds feeling each other out waiting to make a move. The Tigers have enough pitching and certainly more than enough power to win the AL Central and maybe make some noise in the playoffs. The Minnesota Twins are annoyingly good as usual, but I still feel that Target Field, their new stadium, will level the playing field down the stretch and make it more difficult on the Twins.
So now I come to the team I devote my summer to the Chicago White Sox, the biggest disappointment this season. I don’t know where to begin, oh wait; yes I do the starting pitching. What a dud! By far the most unexpected development for the Sox this year has been the inconsistent starting pitching for the Sox. On paper, one of the best pitching staffs in all of baseball, in reality one of the worse. I’m not going to get into details but let’s just say that their ERA is above five and a virus seems to be spreading throughout the staff, where even the better pitchers are stinking it up. John Danks who was throwing CY Young quality stuff has hit a major speed bump, and the only consistent pitcher has been Freddy Garcia. That’s right Garcia has been the most consistent, which is pretty scary.
This is it Sox fans, this is the week I was hoping we would not be speaking of until September, do or die! If the Sox do not show a pulse against the Tigers and Cubs this week I’m looking to the future as a fan. Sure, I’ll still tune in every night and hope to see the season turn around for Gordon Beckham and Alexei Ramirez, watch Alexis Rios go for 30/30, and see if Jake Peavy can ever return to form. There’s more than enough interesting stories for the White Sox to keep me tuned in; Signs of life for 2011.
What’s going to happen if the white flag is waved? Mark Buerhle to the Cardinals seems an obvious choice since his ERA is so solid against the National league. Paul Konerko to the Angels seems to be all but executed, and AJ to the Rangers seems realistic also. The biggest question is do you blow-up the rotation and bullpen even more? I say, yes!
You can get some decent talent for John Danks and Bobby Jenks, I say do it. Let’s get some young decent arms back that we let go for the Jake Peavy and Juan Pierre. I mean look at what we gave up, Clayton Richard and his 2.87 ERA has settled in nicely in San Diego and Joe Ely’s 2.54 ERA in Los Angeles has the Dodgers in first place. What did the Sox get out of the deal, not much, a .250 leadoff hitter and more talk than performance out of Peavy.
Buckle down Sox fans and let’s hope that the dark days are behind us, but it doesn’t look so good right now from a pitching standpoint. Buerhle just let up three in the first, but Paul Konerko hit a two-run bomb to cut the lead to 3-2. That would be the AL league leader in home runs, Mr. Paul Konerko.