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White Sox: Super speedy team climbing stolen bases ladder

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CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 16: Adam Engel #15 of the Chicago White Sox steals second base as Ronny Rodriguez #60 of the Detroit Tigers takes a late throw during the seventh inning on June 16, 2018 at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Tigers won 7-5. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 16: Adam Engel #15 of the Chicago White Sox steals second base as Ronny Rodriguez #60 of the Detroit Tigers takes a late throw during the seventh inning on June 16, 2018 at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Tigers won 7-5. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images) /
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When a team is in a rebuild, the word “despite” is used frequently. Take this statement for example: Despite the x-number of losses, the White Sox are one of the speediest team in baseball.

And, the White Sox can prove it with the sheer number of bases they have stolen in 2018.

In fact, at this point in the season, the Sox are atop the AL in stolen bases with a team total of 60. The only team with more stolen bases is the Washington Nationals, with 61. One might argue that this number is only about stolen bases, but really, it’s about so much more.

Without speed, bases cannot be stolen

CHICAGO, IL – MAY 04: Tim Anderson #7 of the Chicago White Sox steals second base against the Minnesota Twins at Guaranteed Rate Field on May 4, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Twins defeated the White Sox 6-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL – MAY 04: Tim Anderson #7 of the Chicago White Sox steals second base against the Minnesota Twins at Guaranteed Rate Field on May 4, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The Twins defeated the White Sox 6-4. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Most of the bases have been stolen by two men: Tim Anderson and Adam Engel. They have 15 and 10 respectively. A total of nine Sox have at least two stolen bases. That is a notable amount of teamwork.

Consider the two other AL-Central teams. Only six Detroit Tigers have two or more stolen bases and eight of the Kansas City Royals do. Only one Tiger and one Royal have double-digit stolen bases.

Only four Minnesota Twins have two or more stolen bases. Seven Cleveland Indians have two or more stolen bases and they have Rajai Davis, Jose Ramirez, and Francisco Lindor who have 16, 12, and 10 each. With 56 stolen bases, the Indians are nipping at the Sox heels.

Where else speed matters

But, speed doesn’t just show up in stolen bases. It also shows up in extra-base hits. This is another spot where the Sox excel. Your Chicago White Sox are also atop the AL list of triples as a team with 21. The team is third in the MLB behind the Arizona Diamondbacks (28) and Pittsburgh Pirates (22). Ironically, the Sox are tied with the Cubs in this statistic.

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Who’s the fastest?

So, who is the fastest White Sox player? That is actually a question that can be answered and it is not who you might think it is. According to Baseball Savant, the site that tracks Statcast Sprint Speed, Adam Engel is the speediest White Sox player with a footspeed of 30.1 ft/sec. He is ranked fifth in the MLB and third in the AL. Anderson is close behind with 29.0 ft/sec. He ranks as the eighth fastest shortstop in the MLB.

While these numbers might not be too surprising, the fact that six White Sox players are in the top 100 might be. Remember that each team fields a 25-man roster. So with 30 teams, there are 750 official MLB players. Having six in the top 100 is worth noting. The six (in order) include Engel, Charlie Tilson, Avisail Garcia, Anderson, Yoan Moncada, and Leury Garcia.

Next: The White Sox prospect you really should know

And, the seventh speedy Sox ranks at #105 – Yolmer Sanchez, who is the fifth fastest third baseman in the MLB. And, all seven of these players are faster than the league average of 27.0 ft/sec. Keep your eyes open or you just might miss one of the speedy Sox!

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