The Chicago White Sox are playing in the American League Central. The thought out there is that they are the best team in the division and it really isn’t even close. Maybe that is the case but there are teams in this division that got significantly better during the offseason.
In 2021, the White Sox had that division won long before the postseason started. You have to wonder if that forced them to take their foot off the gas which allowed the Houston Astros to embarrass them in the postseason.
It would be nice if the other teams in the division could make things at least a little bit harder so the White Sox are forced t stay focused until the end of the year. Having a top-two record in your league basically wins you a playoff series as you have a bye into the ALDS.
The White Sox need to take care of their business against the division, however, regardless of if they are good or not. There is something to be very scared about as an opponent of these AL Central teams so the White Sox need to be ready to bring their best every game. This is the scariest part of each division rival heading into the season:
Cleveland Guardians – Pitching
The Cleveland baseball team will be known as the Guardians for the first time ever starting this season. Regardless of what they are called, however, the organization develops pitching as well as anyone in the league. This is going to be something for the White Sox to overcome a lot in 2022.
As much of a pitching factory as these guys are, their offense isn’t that great outside of Jose Ramirez who is a top-ten MLB player. They might play in a lot of low-scoring games and the White Sox might have the pitching to keep up as well. The offense could very well stall against this outstanding staff from time to time.
Kansas City Royals – Bobby Witt Jr.
The Chicago White Sox knows what it is like to have extremely exciting top prospects coming up. That is the case with the Kansas City Royals right now and nobody is more exciting than Bobby Witt Jr.
We don’t know how good they will be but he is going to be a force for a long time. Expect Witt Jr. to be one of the legit favorites for the AL Rookie of the Year all season long. It will be fun to see him come to Guaranteed Rate Field and take on the Sox soon.
Minnesota Twins – Carlos Correa
The Minnesota Twins might have been the biggest disappointment in all of baseball for 2021. They went from first to worst but the offense wasn’t one of their issues. It was all about their pitching letting them down on most nights.
The lineup is very good and Carlos Correa makes them so much more dangerous. He leaves the Houston Astros where he has had a significant amount of success and now brings that to this lineup. It is going to be a lot for teams to handle which is scary to think about.
Detroit Tigers – Their offseason
The Detroit Tigers were the second-best team in the AL Central in 2021 despite coming in third. Cleveland finished ahead of them but that is only because of Detroit’s really bad start. They figured it out down the stretch and really played some good baseball.
Then they went out and made some awesome additions to the group over the winter. Guys like Javier Baez, Tucker Barnhart, Eduardo Rodriguez, and Austin Meadows are all players that Detroit added during the offseason that feed into the hype.
Expect these guys along with a lot of young players there to make an impact. It is going to be a hard team for the Chicago White Sox to play against, starting over the first weekend of the season.
Each Chicago White Sox division rival has something about them to be scared of.
The Chicago White Sox are going to be an impressive team in 2022. Maybe they will run away with it but that doesn’t mean it will be easy. All of these challenges that these rivals present them will make things tough but also exciting. Hopefully, they can overcome all of this and add another division title to their resume.