This Week in White Sox Baseball: July 2-8

Week 13 Record: 1-6 (30-60 Overall), 4th in AL Central

Congratulations to Jose Abreu for being named the Starting 1B on the AL All-Star Team! Your 1B held off a late surge from Yuli Gurriel of the Astros to earn his second All-Star apearance and his first start. Jose has been slumping recently, but is still hitting a respectable .259 with 12 homers and 50 RBI. If you ask me, regardless of the slump, he deserved his All-Star bid.

Weekly Score Update

Game 84: White Sox 3, Reds 5

Game 85: White Sox 12, Reds 8

Game 86: White Sox 4, Reds 7

Game 87: White Sox 3, Astros 4

Game 88: White Sox 4, Astros 11

Game 89: White Sox 6, Astros 12

Game 90: White Sox 1, Astros 2

This Week by the Numbers

12.1 – Number of Innings Lucas Giolito threw in two solid starts this week

.333 – Yoan Moncada’s Batting Average over this last week of games

2 – Number of times Daniel Palka and Avi Garcia went back-to-back JUST THIS WEEK

4 – Number of White Sox’ 1B that have been named AL All-Star Game Starters after Abreu’s nomination on Sunday

5 – Number of Strikeouts Alec Hansen had in 6 innings of 1 run baseball on Sunday

0 – Number of times I worried about Moncada this week (same number of times you should’ve!)

Quote of the Week: Chris Getz on Young Players Struggling

You want them to go through these struggles, so when you do sense yourself going down a similar road in the future, you’ve got something to go back to. This was the correction I need to do so the valley is not as deep. That’s part of this whole process we are going through right now. That’s why I feel like it should be more sustainable, because there are so many learning experiences along the way here.”

-From MLB.com’s Scott Merkin

One of the most important things that a prospect can do is fail. Not only will it humble you – especially when everyone considers you one of the best of the future – it will give you a better understanding of yourself as a player. Getting to look at video when you struggle gives you the opportunity to find flaws you may not have known about. You’d rather see guys like Moncada, Giolito, and Kopech struggle now with the time and ability to get better. This is what Chris Getz is getting at in this quote.

Always remind yourself of this when you start to doubt our young guys: what were you perfect at when you were 22 years old? As a 21 year old, my answer is “absolutely nothing, but I’m working to improve.” Your answer was probably the same. Give them the same time and patience you probably asked for.

Question of the Week

This question was related to one I’ve asked a lot of people who have been worried about Moncada being a bust: “What does Yoan Moncada have to do in the second half of the season for you to consider his season a success?” Basically, I wanted to know what Moncada’s numbers would have to look like at the end of the year.

We received a wide variety of responses (thanks for sending them in!), and they could be group into three buckets:

1) .250-.270 BA, .320-.340 OBP, 20+ homers, and cut down on errors (including an extremely specific 4 error limit for the rest of the year)

2) Less K’s, Higher OBP, Swing the bat

3) Stop being so hard on him and let him just continue to improve as he goes

Personally, I don’t like the arbitrary baselines that we as a fan base continue to place upon him, mostly because we have no extensive MLB history to look back on for his numbers. I understand the desire for him to hit .270 and knock out 20 homers in a year, and honestly, in the next year or two, this should be something we come to expect as fans. But, in Full Year #1, I think it’s better to speak in more general terms: less K’s, swing more, and walk a little bit more than he has. This accomplishes the same things most fans are looking for, without putting arbitrary numbers on it.

My favorite comment, however, came from @MBaldwin_7: “Just let the dude play lol y’all way too hard on him.” And for a rookie – maybe not by MLB standards, but from a career standpoint – I agree here. Any improvement we see this year is a positive step forward to the arbitrary numbers we eventually want to see as fans. But I can’t stress it enough: the more you place arbitrary expectations on parts of a rebuild too soon (AKA 20+ homers, 70+ wins, etc.), you are doomed to be let down, because failure is the most important – and most expected – part of a rebuild. Just enjoy the ride, and you’ll know when it’s time to start expecting something from this team. Right now, however, is not the time.

Player of the Week

Thanks to all who voted! With a whopping 63% of the vote, Avisail Garcia took home Player of the Week Honors this week! All he did this week was hit .333 with 5 HR and 7 RBI, good for a 1.370 OPS. He now has nine homers on the season. Now if only the Sox would get some guys on base when he was hitting homers…..

Congrats also to Daniel Palka (12%) and Yoan Moncada (23%), who both had excellent weeks. Great to see Yoan back in consideration for POTW Honors.

Moment of the Week

Thanks again for all the votes! This has to be one of my favorite moments of the season, mostly because I’ve seen this happen for other teams, but I’ve never seen it for the White Sox:

I will cut Rick Sutcliffe some slack because he said Moncada will be very good, but at the same time, Yoan still belongs here – he needs to be here just as much as the Sox need him to be here to continue his development. Jon Sciambi calling the game next to him was awesome – he was the perfect foil for Sutcliffe in the moment. Great choice for MOTW White Sox fans.

The Week Ahead: Some Central Divisions Action and MUCH NEEDED Days Off

Monday: OFF DAY

Tuesday: Dylan Covey (3-4, 5.54 ERA) vs. STL Miles Mikolas (9-3, 2.63 ERA), 7:10 CT

Wednesday: Carlos Rodon (1-3, 4.29 ERA) vs. STL Luke Weaver (5-7, 4.92 ERA), 7:10 CT

Thursday: OFF DAY

Friday-Sunday: Series versus the Royals… Starters assumedly Lopez, Shields, Giolito

Have a Great Week, White Sox Fans!

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