It is finally done. The Chicago White Sox have clinched the American League Central Division by defeating the Cleveland Indians in game one of Thursday’s doubleheader. It was an amazing game thanks to an early outburst of offense by the White Sox highlighted by big home runs from Tim Anderson, Luis Robert, and Eloy Jimenez.
It took a little bit longer than expected thanks to some rain and good play by the Detroit Tigers but the White Sox are finally division champions. Doing it on Cleveland’s field is something special because they have been one of the classes of the division for a long time.
This is the first time the White Sox have won the division since 2008. It has been a long time coming as there has been a lot of bad baseball in between then and now. Rick Hahn started a legit rebuild in 2016 and it has worked wonders. They are a good baseball team and they are going to be a good baseball team for a very long time.
It is fitting that three young players that were a big part of the rebuild were the catalysts of the clinching game. Winning is a combination of good players playing well and good managing. Tony La Russa, despite his early-season issues, has done a great job dealing with injuries and other challenges to make this team awesome.
The Chicago White Sox are the American League Central Division champions.
This is Tony La Russa’s second time making it to the playoffs with the Chicago White Sox. However, the first one came in 1983 when he was a much younger manager. It has all come full circle for him in his managing career.
There are still a lot of games left to close out the month of September. The White Sox are surely in a good spot but they want to make sure that they go into the playoffs feeling good about their games. Everyone wants to be pitching well (and feeling healthy) and the hitters need to be hitting well. As the saying goes, “ball go far team goes far”.
As of right now, it looks like the White Sox are going to face the Houston Astros in the American League Division Series. That is certainly going to be a tough challenge as that team has a World Series title, another appearance in the Fall Classic, and multiple ALCS appearances during their recent run with their core.
Playing this well against Cleveland and the rest of the schedule should really help the White Sox prepare for them. It is going to be fun to see them set their rotation and get their position players ready for that huge series in the first round. Right now, however, it is just nice to say that the Chicago White Sox are the 2021 American League Central Division champions!