2018 New Year’s Resolutions for the Chicago White Sox
White Sox will enter year two of the current rebuild in 2018 season. What are some New Year’s resolutions for this young and exciting ballclub?
Since we have entered 2018, it is time for some New Year’s Resolutions for the Chicago White Sox. For a team that lost 95 games in 2017, one would think the South Siders would have plenty of commitments to make for this season. However, keep in mind the situation they are in, and how it impacts their current success. Should that affect any of the Sox goals for this upcoming campaign? Let’s take a look!
Hit the ball out of the park
This was a weak spot for the Sox in 2017, considering that only the Boston Red Sox hit fewer home runs in the American League (168 to 186). Sox GM Rick Hahn made an attempt to improve this area when he brought in Welington Castillo, who has homered 17.7 times on average over the last three seasons. Those long balls are from a catcher, and when you can get offensive production out of that position it improves the lineup altogether.
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Another way Sox fans could be receiving souvenirs in the bleachers is an entire season of Yoan Moncada. This is an extremely talented player whose bat is electric, meaning his line drives could go over the wall instead of ending up in an outfielders glove. One more name to keep an eye on is minor league outfielder Eloy Jimenez, who the Sox acquired from the Chicago Cubs in a trade for Jose Quintana. He is the number five prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com, so our fan base should be eager to see his debut in 2018 if it does occur in a handful of months.
Catch the ball
Any times a team doesn’t have good pitching, it is exceedingly important to play solid defense behind him. Last season, the Sox failed to execute in the field, as they were one of the worst defensive teams in baseball. Only the Oakland Athletics made more errors in the American League (121), while the National League’s Milwaukee Brewers committed one additional miscue than the South Siders (115). To put this into perspective, the Sox 114 errors equates to 0.7 per game, forcing the pitcher to retire four men in many innings. Not good when you are less talented, to begin with.
For any rebuilding team, they will run countless pitchers to the mound that do not belong in the major leagues. When that is the case, throwing strikes can be an issue, which is exactly what happened in 2017 to the Sox. They led the majors in walks with 632, while striking out only 1,193 (second worst in MLB). That equates to a 1.89 to one K to BB rate, far from what is needed to win at the big league level. So, in order to improve this upcoming season, they have to get the ball over the plate.
Next: Who Will Start in Center Field?
Overall, there is still a long way to go before the Sox will contend for the postseason. These statistics are eye-popping and need to drastically improve over the coming year. Keep in mind that a rebuild is a marathon, not a sprint. There is no reason to rush the process, especially with the minor league system the Sox have. So, sit back and enjoy the ride, Sox fans.