In 2022, it was clear that the Cleveland Guardians were hungry for an AL Central championship and that's precisely what they did.
The Guardians finished their season with a 92-70 overall record, punching their ticket into the 2022 major league playoffs. They ended up beating the Tampa Bay Rays in the Wild Card series and lost in the ALDS against the New York Yankees.
For a team that didn't have high expectations entering the 2022 season, the shocked many people.
They played competitive baseball for all 162 games. What paid off for them was all the little things that contributed to their victories and the White Sox got a taste of Cleveland's winning baseball culture almost every time they squared off with one another.
The White Sox want payback for what occurred between the two clubs last season but the Guardians are planning to keep control at the top of the AL Central standings in 2023.
Chuck Garfien took a trip to the Cleveland Guardians Spring Training camp and he found out what the Guardians really think about the Chicago White Sox.
The Chicago White Sox and Cleveland Guardians will have a fun year.
The Guardians were fed up with the baseball society telling them that the White Sox were the team to beat in the AL Central and not them, so when they beat out Chicago for a trip to the post-season. It guaranteed them at least some respect.
The Guardians are mentally and physically preparing for an even better season in 2023 than they did in 2022, setting up a significant rivalry between the two baseball clubs.
Shane Bieber and his squad wanted to prove that they could compete in the AL Central and that's precisely what they did.
Terry Francona has created a culture filled with competitiveness in Cleveland. Their abundance of young talent shocked the baseball world in 2022. Shane Bieber stated how fun it was to be a part of a young talented roster that all clicked together on and off the field.
For the Guardians to come together and play efficient baseball was very impressive, especially considering where they were projected to be by the end of the 2022 regular season.
Bieber, like many, was shocked that the White Sox weren't as competitive in 2022 as they were in 2021. Bieber knows Chicago has loads of talent all around the clubhouse so when they finished 81-81, it left many surprised.
"" The AL Central is a scrappy division to play in, it can be difficult""- Shane Bieber on White Sox Talk Podcast
Any team can win or lose in the AL Central and Shane Bieber plans on winning baseball games through competitive nature.
The Cleveland Guardians had the competitive edge among the other four clubs in the division and it might be wise for the White Sox to take a tiny bit of Cleveland's play style with them into 2023.
Steven Kwan also joined the White Sox Talk podcast and stated what to expect from the Guardians and White Sox in 2023.
Kwan, a year ago, was trying to make the Guardians roster for 2022. Unfortunately for the White Sox, he accomplished that goal by putting together an awe-inspiring rookie season.
Kwan knew the team had an exceptional year brewing after the late-inning comeback against the White Sox in Chicago early on in the year. Josh Naylor was the killer in the game, hitting two big home runs to beat the White Sox in extra innings.
The Guardians were gunning for the White Sox all year in 2022 and Steven Kwan believes that will continue in 2023. This time, the White Sox will attempt to be gunning for them.
Steven Kwan is an exceptional baseball player, and he creates ways to make himself better seemingly every single time he is on the baseball diamond. It will be interesting to see if anything changes positively or negatively for the White Sox in 2023 when dealing with Kwan.
Jose Ramirez is as big of a competitor as anyone else and when he saw Chuck Garfien in his clubhouse, he chose to call out Garfien. Ramirez wanted to make Garfien feel uncomfortable about the situation and to make Garfien unwelcome.
Zack Collins was right beside Garfien and the two talked about the situation on the podcast on top of how Collins feels about playing now for both the Guardians and White Sox in his career.
Collins is excited about his new opportunity with Cleveland. While it does feel a little awkward for the catcher, he's ready to compete on a playoff-caliber roster/team.
Zack Collins discussed Jose Ramirez and Chuck Garfien's situation as all fun and games. Ramirez is always a hot-head and he wants to beat the White Sox just like everyone else in his clubhouse.
When he saw Garfien, he thought of him as a spy or a White Sox-affiliated human, hence why he made him feel unwelcome.
The White Sox and Guardians are creating a rivalry for the next many years to come and it should be fun for AL Central followers to watch throughout 2023.
These two clubs are the favorites with the Minnesota Twins for the division and it will be a battle for the AL Central regular season championship in 2023.