With the first 200 innings of the season in the books, I want to take a step back and look at a few positive things the White Sox have done so far in 2012.
Your Chicago White Sox are just a game out of first place. They got off to a pretty hot start and have been near the top of the Central league all season. Their recent 5 game skid came at a time when their division rivals also crapped the bed. Of the group, only Cleveland has a winning record(6-4) over their last 10 games, which was enough to put them on top at the moment. Cleveland is here for three games this week starting Tuesday night. Plenty of good seats available. Maybe I'll see you there on Thursday night.
AL Central Standings
The pitching has been outstanding, leading the AL with a team WHIP of 1.08.
Jake Peavy looks like the Ace we thought we were getting when he first came over in 2009, so much so that if he keeps it up he will be in the Cy Young conversation with Jered Weaver, Justin Verlander and Felix Hernandez. He's been the most valuable pitcher overall to you fantasy owners.
Chris Sale has 26 Ks through 26 innings with a 3.12 ERA. Colin's series on the young lefty can help you understand why he is seeing the positive results we had all hoped for. The skinny kid is one of my personal favorites on the club.
Gavin Floyd has matched Sale's k/IP ratio, with 31 strikeouts in 31.2 IP.
Rookie Addison Reed doesn't have an ERA yet. His K/BB ratio is 11/3.
The .730 team defense efficiency rating(DER) is second only to Toronto(.743) in all of baseball. Amazingly the Sox catchers have thrown out 8 base runners while only allowing 3 would be thieves to reach their destination. Their .987 fielding percentage is the 4th best in MLB.
With Rios in right, it's a significant upgrade over what Quentin gave us the last few seasons out there. Alexei might be the best defensive shortstop in the league. The only one I think that gives him a run for his money is Elvis Andrus. Beckham can really pick it at second base, and Dunn has even been serviceable when he has gotten a chance at first.
Paul Konerko has 5 HR to lead the team. He has 401 for his career and 394 of them in a White Sox uniform. Professional hitter, that guy.
A.J. Pierzynski has been killing it. He's hitting .309 in the middle of the order and has 17 RBI in 18 games. He has left the yard 4 times.
They aren't world beaters, but the Sox can make some noise if a couple things break their way. So far we have seen improvement from 2011 rally killers Adam Dunn and Alex Rios. Jake Peavy is healthy and the division is wide open.
Detroit has had some injuries(Fister on DL with a strained rib) and some rotten luck(Scherzer has a .459 babip) from their starters and haven't really got it going as a result. They released Detroit's favorite grinder Brandon Inge this week and are pretty bad defensively. Cleveland has put a nice little run together since the Sox went in there and took a series from them early in the month.
I feel like the things the Sox do well- pitching and defense- are sustainable. They can feasibly stay in this thing all season long.