White Sox fans unite – this is going to be a special year and the first full season of the rebuild. Who will you be rooting for?
Ok, time for a White Sox fan check-in. I’m hopeful this post will solicit many comments to the Southside Showdown page as well as comments to our re-post on Facebook. This should be a fun one.
My question for Sox nation is as follows: looking at the 60+ players in camp today, who will you root for most in 2018?
It could be a veteran major leaguer with an established history of success such as Jose Abreu or Avisail Garcia. Perhaps you fancy picking one of the younger players such as Yoan Moncada or Nicky Delmonico, or pitchers in Lucas Giolito or Reynaldo Lopez. Or you could root for one of our young horses down on the farm such as Michael Kopech or Alec Hansen.
Here’s my pick for 2018
As for me, I’ll kick things off – I’m rooting for Carson Fulmer and Delmonico. Fulmer has a world of talent, throws in the mid-90’s, and has four solid pitches each with movement. Delmonico carried the team with his scorching bat in 2017 Sox debut. Each is young and hungry, and we don’t yet know just how good they can be.
But that’s not why I’ll be rooting for them. After rocky starts in 2016 and 2017, Fulmer knuckled down and settled in for a solid 2017 close. “Filthy Fulmer” should change his nickname to “Feisty Fulmer”. Casual fans jumped all over him and questioned his capability after one poor start, but he fought the criticism and knuckled down to close a strong 2017 campaign. He is a competitor.
Delmonico has a quick bat and great eye. I noticed his ability to snap the bat and turn on the ball when he bashed 5 home runs last spring training. I saw the same thing after he joined the team on August 1st. Nicky’s story is one to root for in my opinion. The guy almost hung up his cleats in a well-documented story, but upon hearing his mother’s words, “You were born to play baseball,” thankfully reconsidered.
That’s what I like
Those are the kinds of players I root for. Players with ability, but also with a story sprinkled with challenge. Not necessarily the biggest star, not the largest physical specimen, and not the most storied acquisition. I like the underdog. I’ll take heart over pedigree any day. I’m rooting for the little guy who is not afraid to step up and take on the big guy.