White Sox shortstop appears to be the vocal leader the South Side will need for this upcoming season after failed pursuits of superstar free agents.
The overall mood of most White Sox fans over the past few weeks has been down. Ever since the White Sox missed out on signing Manny Machado, some fans have voiced their frustration through various social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.
While the White Sox missed out on signing Machado and Bryce Harper, an unlikely hero appears to have emerged for fans of this team. No, not Jose Abreu. Not Carlos Rodon or even Lucas Giolito. That hero for this upcoming season could come in the form of Tim Anderson.
Anderson, entering his fourth major league season, hasn’t shied away from vocal confrontations on the field. And shortly after the Sox missed out on signing Machado, Anderson perhaps uttered the team motto for the year when proclaiming how players who didn’t sign with the Sox missed the boat.
"“Either ride with us or get run over. We know who’s on the boat with us and which way we want to sail.”"
White Sox fans need a player that isn’t afraid to defend the team and Anderson appears ready to do that this season. While some players such as Machado avoided signing with the Sox, Anderson is here defend the south side. Sox fans should fully embrace Anderson possibly becoming the hero they need in 2019.
Sure, Anderson’s offensive numbers could have been better last season. He only hit .240 but had career highs in home runs at 20, stolen bases at 26 and compiled 2.5 wins above replacement for the Sox in 2018. Anderson even cut his errors from a major league-leading 28 in 2017 to just 20 last season at shortstop.
Currently, in Spring Training, Anderson is off to a good start offensively. Through 16 at-bats, Anderson is hitting .438 with four extra-base hits that include two doubles, one triple, and one home run. It would be great if Anderson could not only keep having quality at-bats in Spring Training but if he could also carry any positive momentum he might have into the regular season.
There’s no statistic that measures a player’s heart. If there was, Anderson could possibly be a leader in that department. For now, Anderson could very well become the vocal leader the Sox need in their clubhouse and the hero the south side needs for what could be another losing season.