You know the White Sox are off to a bad start when Hawk mentions the 1983 White Sox during every broadcast. In a way, the 2011 White Sox are like the ’83 Sox in that there’s a mixture of new and old talent that was built to contend. “Our ’83 team got off to a 16-24, then they went ahead and won the AL West by 20 games. Anything can happen.”
That’s true and when the ’83 team found it’s identity they never looked back during the regular season, they took over first place on July 18 and ended the season with a 99-63 record. That calculates to an 83-39 record over their last 122 games of the season.
The 2011 White Sox currently reside at 11-21, to get to the modest 16-24 they’ll have to go 5-3 over the next eight games on a West Coast road trip. Do they have the talent to do it, sure, will they; I’d be surprised. I think a lot of what happens to the team is riding on Jake Peavy’s performance tonight for AAA Charlotte. Why?
On April 19, the team received the news that Jake Peavy had been shutdown for shoulder pain. It’s deflating news for a team expecting an arm to return that’s a huge piece to the 2011 campaign. Since that announcement the Sox have won only four games. I think an announcement tomorrow that Peavy is returning to the Sox will give them the mental boost they are in need of right now.
It’s hard to win when your offseason left handed power acquisition, Adam Dunn, is hitting 93 points below his lifetime average. That’s hard to do since his lifetime average is .250, I’ll spare everyone the math on that one. Also, another downer is the play of Alex Rios thus far, although he has three homeruns, a double, and a stolen base in his last five games. Looks like he might be busting out of it, but up to now he’s been pretty horrendous.
The Tribune had graphic in the paper this morning showing that everyone is hitting at least 20 plus points below their lifetime averages, except for Paul Konerko and Carlos Quentin, who are both hitting above their lifetime averages.
I don’t think shaking up the lineup will do anything for the White Sox at this point, since this is the team that’s suppose to compete for a World Series. You need to put them out there and let them get their at-bats to right the ship.
Phil Rogers, who I agree with most of time, wrote the most dimwitted article yesterday suggesting moving Juan Pierre to the ninth spot, and how Pierre was more suited for the 1911 Phillies and 1914 Braves than a modern team.
Really Phil? Baseball hasn’t changed that much and if Juan Pierre is getting on base then the Sox have a better chance of scoring a first inning run. He has an .OBP of .316, so he’s getting on base. The problem for Pierre is he’s gone through a recent stretch of not getting good jumps when stealing second. He’s been working to rectify the situation. A good leadoff hitter leads to early scoring, that part of the game has never changed.
I back Ozzie’s decision to leave the lineup as is with the occasional substitution to give starters a rest. This is a good team that hasn’t played like a good team since the first week of the season.