The Chicago White Sox are blessed with some good depth at positions across the team. They have had to utilize some of that talent in this young season as injuries have stricken them at various positions.
There is one player that has had a solid start to the season when he has been called upon to fill in. That player is Adam Engel.
The White Sox have manipulated their lineup quite often this season. They are constantly adding players in places to see how they fit. They are subbing players at key moments in games to gain advantages due to that player’s skill set. Engel has been utilized for his speed in certain situations as well as his prowess to produce a timely hit or two when it’s needed.
Engel’s speed has helped the White Sox score a few runs. When he’s up to bat and connects, he can usually turn what would be a single into a double. He can steal bases and isn’t afraid to take a little bit of a gamble to grab a base. He’s the perfect backup and situational player for this offense.
Adam Engel is a big part of the Chicago White Sox in every way possible.
As the weather warms and the White Sox start to win more games (which has nothing to do with the weather of course) you will find that the Sox will utilize Engel more as a pinch-runner and have him occasionally spell A.J. Pollock in right field.
This Wednesday night’s game saw us witness a little bit of what Engel can do with his speed. While his bat wasn’t hot, his legs were and in the 8th inning he chased down a ball in the outfield that could have gone for a double and quite possibly put a runner in position to score a tying run.
His ability to chase down the ball, quickly, allowed the runner to stay at first and temporarily end the scoring threat.
So, what kind of numbers has Engel put up so far this season? He is slashing .213/.275/.573. He has batted in one run and has four runs to his credit.
Engel has stolen two bases so far this season and should steal a lot more depending on how many opportunities he gets to pinch-run or pinch-hit. The more opportunities the better.
Engel may not have the power that some of the other hitters have but that’s ok. He’s shown that he can be an important addition to the lineup despite that. It’s almost like football where you have a special package built around one player.
That player is meant to create something whether it’s a score or to get the team into a certain position. That player is a tool in the Swiss army knife of a manager. Tony LaRussa uses Engel in that kind of manner. As a tool or a weapon to get a certain thing accomplished.
The White Sox are lucky to have Engel as a part of their team. He’s a quiet but very valuable piece to the puzzle that is the White Sox offense. Expect the team to utilize him more to get in scoring position. He can help them win.