An Overview Of The Chicago White Sox

In a season filled with ups and downs the Sox have a record of 44-48 are are just five games out of first place. This leaves many to wonder if they can turn it around and also what grade would they get going into the second half of the season?

Years ago, August 17, 1920, to be exact, Cleveland Shortstop Ray Chapman was hit in the head by a pitch thrown by Yankees pitcher Carl Mays. 12 Hours later he died without ever waking up. This tragedy, the only Major League to die so far from being hit, led to a rule requiring Umpires to replace the ball whenever it became dirty.

Certainly, it wasn’t a weakness on the 2010 team, but with a better bullpen, the A’s can certainly challenge for a playoff spot in the AL this upcoming season. Perhaps the biggest issues were managerial mismanagement and injuries, in truth.

Obviously there are times when instant replay would be beneficial to the game. Roughly a month ago Cleveland was playing a game in Chicago and the Tribe sure could have used some sort of replay system being in place. A sale jerseys hitter hit a deep fly ball and, as the ball headed into the stands, it veered towards the foul pole. The ball clearly landed in foul territory in the stands but the umpire misread where the ball landed. He judged the ball to be fair and called it as such. After the four umpires got together to discuss the play the ball was ruled to be fair and Chicago was awarded with a home run. Three runs scored on the play and the Indians subsequently had no chance of completing a comeback that had begun an inning before.

Before the White Sox played the Tigers at U.S. Cellular today, Kenny Williams pulled off a trade to cut payroll and help the bullpen. The Sox traded pitcher Edwin Jackson and infielder Mark Teahen to the Toronto Blue Jays for Oak Forest native Jason Frasor and prospect Zach Stewart. The blue Jays then traded Jackson to St. Louis in a multi-player deal for Cody Rasmus. Jackson came to the Sox last year in a deal that sent high prospect Daniel Hudson to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Jackson was 7-7 with a 3.92 ERA and 97 strikeouts. Mark Teahen never really settled in with the Sox, having made several trips to the disabled list. He was batting only .209 with 3 homeruns and 11 RBIs.

22. Colorado Rockies – If I were the Rockies, I’d trade both Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki, who are too injury prone yet have a ton of value. It won’t happen, though.

Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles finished strong and really aren’t that far from being back in postseason play, but they need to make several tweaks in the offseason.

Erik Bedard is slated to get the start for the Red Sox in this one. He is winless in three starts since coming over from Seattle at the end of July. The left-hander is 4-8 with an ERA of 3.44 in 19 starts this season. Lifetime against the Rangers, Bedard is 4-3 with a 3.22 Era.

Knights Purcey And Morel Called Up By White Sox, Phegley Gets All Star Nod

The atmosphere at U.S. Cellular Field was electric, as a crowd of 40,354 rabid Sox fans dressed in black witnessed one of the most exciting games in Comiskey Park/U.S. Cellular Field history. The “blackout” was a success, as the Sox did what the University of Georgia could not do Saturday night.

In addition to losing Crain, the Twins lost Matt Guerrier to the Dodgers, Brian Fuentes to the Athletics, and Jon Rauch to the blue Jays. Additionally, their former all star closer Joe Nathan is coming back after missing all of last season following Tommy John surgery. Also, a week into spring training Twins all star first baseman Justin Morneau had yet to play and there was no time table for his return as he continues to deal with a concussion he suffered mid way through last season. With the subtractions and uncertainty of key Twins, it seems that the Sox have overtaken Minnesota as they, along with the Detroit Tigers, battle for the division.

But Owens’ lack of power seems to have been masked over the years by his ability to steal bases. Owens went 30/43 on stolen base attempts in 2008 with Charlotte and stole 32 while with the sale jerseys in 2007, giving the impression that he epitomized the idea of “Ozzieball”-the idea of doing the little things such as bunting and stealing bases which some sale jerseys fans bought into in 2005 (a year in which the team hit 200 home runs).

Seeing as both starters have had relative success against either club, it wouldn’t be surprising to the series decided by the bullpen- which on paper Chicago decidedly has the upper hand.

One argument that is often used for keeping instant replay out of Major League Baseball is the “human element” that is involved in the game. The umpires are the first and only word when it comes to making calls out on the field. A bad call on a bang-bang play or different strike zones among empires could definitely change the course of a ballgame but that is the way the game has been played for a century and a half. Traditionalists would argue that baseball is as old fashioned a sport as you can get and the game should continue to be played in the same fashion.

I knew and liked Red Sox outfielder Tony Conigliaro. He was phenom. To put his talent in context, at age 19, his numbers when matched to others such as Alex Rodriguez, were far superior. Playing in the same outfield, he easily outhit future Hall-of-Famer Carl Yaztremski.

I would keep instant replay away from judgment calls such as whether a runner is safe or out. I would also not use it for balls and strikes. This way, the human element remains in the game and replay is only used when it is absolutely necessary. A play will only come under review when the umpires feel it necessary to do so. Umpires will be evaluated in the same manner they are now. Those that make too many mistakes will not be available to work postseason games and thus will lose out on bigger paychecks.

Peavy claims to be at 60-70 percent heading into spring training, so his velocity is likely to be lower than usual as his arm & shoulder regain strength. If he’s throwing 94 mph on his fastball by the end of spring, maybe there’s a chance he returns sooner than early May. But if his fastball is barely scraping 90 mph or is losing velocity early into outings, it’ll be a longer road back.

Update: A’s Hire Wakamatsu, Cora To Remain On White Sox Bench.for Now

Both teams are back at it today at 6 PM CT. Mark Buehrle (11-9) will take the ball from Ozzie Guillen and look to improve upon his stellar 3.74 ERA on the season. The lefty has struggled recently however going 0-3 with an 11.74 ERA over his last three starts.

When Thome left to go to the rival Twins prior to the 2010 season, General Manager Kenny Williams and Manager Ozzie Guillen decided to use the designated hitter slot as a way to get bench players at bats. Many different players hit in the designated hitter slot for Guillen last season but without the power production they were used to.

Acquired from the Rockies in 2009 for Jose Contreras, Hynick will be 26 March 7 and had a 5.79 FIP in Charlotte last season. He’s a non-roster invitee, making him just about as much a longshot as 40-man roster members Cofield and Jones.

Chicago was haunted by one of its old pitchers Daniel Hudson in Friday’s Game 1 when he pitched the Diamondbacks to a 4-1 decision over the 121 road underdogs. The loss was the White Sox’s third in-a-row leaving them 5.5 games in back of Cleveland and Detroit in the AL Central with an overall record of 33-38. They are 16-17 at home and 17-21 on the road.

The White Sox took a flier on Humber this offseason, but don’t expect him to be another Don Cooper reclamation success. The 28-year-old right-hander has been nothing but mediocre in the minor leagues from 2007-2010, posting FIPs of 4.58, 4.86, 4.70, and 4.37 across stops with the Mets, Twins and Royals’ triple-A teams. In 51.1 major-league innings, Humber has a 5.05 FIP as well. But, given the competition, Humber may end up being the best option for the Sox come April 1.

Man, does that seem like a long time ago. The only time “confident” is used with Jerry Owens at this point is when people say they’re confident Owens has played his way off the major league club.

The A’s bullpen finished sixth in the AL with a 3.83 ERA, trailing all four AL playoff teams and the Chicago sale jerseys. Overall, the Oakland relief corps finished 12th in the majors.

Peavy claims to be at 60-70 percent heading into spring training, so his velocity is likely to be lower than usual as his arm & shoulder regain strength. If he’s throwing 94 mph on his fastball by the end of spring, maybe there’s a chance he returns sooner than early May. But if his fastball is barely scraping 90 mph or is losing velocity early into outings, it’ll be a longer road back.

Sox End Skid, But Suffer Blow To Bench

Choo, who reached the .300 mark in batting with a 1-for-3 game on Saturday, sat out the game on Sunday. He becomes the only Tribe hitter since 1901 to bat .300, hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases in back-to-back seasons. The only other Indians to turn that feat but not in back-to-back seasons were Roberto Alomar in 1999 and 2001 and Joe Carter in 1986.

That’s not to say Twins’ starter Nick Blackburn didn’t have a good outing, either. The sale jerseys had fits against Blackburn’s sinker, driving the ball into the ground all day. However, a 2-2 high changeup to Thome in the seventh inning was the mistake that cost the Twins the division, as Thome nailed it over 460 feet to the centerfield concourse to give the sale jerseys a lead they would not relinquish.

One of the tactics is a “brush back pitch”. This tactic is usually used to move a potentially dangerous hitter away from the plate and instill a little fear while he is at bat. causing him to think and perhaps, hesitate.

Hitting with runners in scoring position with less than two outs, hitting into a high number of double plays, and not throwing runners out at second are just a few of the simple tasks they struggle with. So far the Sox have beaten themselves in many games, but if a few key players step it up the sky is the limit.

Danks’ located his fastball with perfection, keeping it down in the zone and right on the corners of the strike zone. His cutter jammed Twins hitters all day, and his changeup and curveball kept them off-balance. Under the circumstances, it was the best outing of Danks’ career without a doubt.

I would keep instant replay away from judgment calls such as whether a runner is safe or out. I would also not use it for balls and strikes. This way, the human element remains in the game and replay is only used when it is absolutely necessary. A play will only come under review when the umpires feel it necessary to do so. Umpires will be evaluated in the same manner they are now. Those that make too many mistakes will not be available to work postseason games and thus will lose out on bigger paychecks.

With postseason hopes hanging on every pitch, Danks delivered with a masterful, eight-inning shutout performance in which he allowed just two hits, three walks, and struck out four. He struck out AL batting champ Joe Mauer twice. He held Carlos Gomez and Denard Span, who came up so big for the Twins last week in Minneapolis, hitless. Possible AL MVP Justin Morneau? Not a chance. He went 0-3 against Danks, who looked unhittable for much of the game.

The race will begin at 6:30 p.m. on July 12. After the race, the runners can attend a free post-race party in the stadium to watch the MLB All-Star Game on the Jumbotron. Donations will be accepted from non-runners at the gate who want to attend the party.