A look back at Alexei Ramirez’s time with the White Sox
By Brian Draus
With Alexei Ramirez signed with the San Diego Padres this week, his time on the South Side came to an end. Let’s look back at eight years of Alexei Ramirez as a member of the Chicago White Sox.
In 2008, Alexei Ramirez was a part of a team that unexpectedly won the American League Central Division crown. That was also his rookie year, where unlike most of his career, he spent the majority of the season at second base. He also totaled 21 home runs, which was career high (Don’t forget the Grand Slam in game 162 against Detroit).
Starting in 2009, Ramirez moved over to shortstop, where he would spend the rest of his career with the White Sox. Offensively he dipped in production, as he hit .277 (compared to .290 in 2008) and homered 15 times. 2010 was a bounce back year for Ramirez, as he hit .282 with 18 home runs and 70 RBI’s. That was the same year the White Sox went on a 26-5 run, however faded late and missed the postseason.
Both 2011 and 2012 were less productive years offensively for Ramirez. He failed to hit .270 either season, and only homered nine times in 2012. However, he did steal 20 bases in 2012, which at the time was a career high. The downside to 2012 was the fact that he walked only 16 times, which was a career low. One good statistic in 2012: Ramirez only made 12 errors, which is a career best for him.
2013 in my opinion was a tough year for Ramirez. Due to a family death before the season, he struggled mightily in the field all year long. His 22 errors were a career high, as the White Sox managed only 63 wins. His six home runs were a career low, however managed a career high 30 stolen bases.
Ramirez was an All-Star for the only time in his career in 2014, as he bounced back after a bad 2013. But, as the season wore on his numbers faded. While he was hitting over .300 for a couple of months, he only managed to hit .273 for the whole season. His power came back in 2014, as he belted 15 home runs, which was his highest total since 2011.
In his final season on the South Side, Ramirez had his worst season as a member of the Chicago White Sox. His batting average dipped below .250 (.249), and he managed only 10 home runs. He struggled defensively in the 1st half, however improved in the 2nd half and ended up with 16 errors total. His error total would have been much higher had he not turned his season around in the 2nd half.
Overall, Ramirez will go down as one of the best two-way shortstops in White Sox history. One fact I did not mention above is his durability, as he played more than 150 games every season since 2010. Ramirez was well-liked by the fans, not to mention a very good ballplayer. He will be missed, but it is time for a change. Good luck in San Diego, Alexei!