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First Pitch: A new era dawns

A reminder that things aren’t what they once were

You may ask yourself: How did I get here?
Sox on 35th

Hey all, new (temp) title, same sassy comebacks.

Let’s get right to it, beginning with a run of stories from some familiar faces in a new place.

First, an explanation of the mega-merger, told from the other side:

A Letter to our Readers – Sox On 35th
Over the past several weeks, I have been in touch with former White Sox beat writer and managing editor of South Side Sox, Brett Ballantini. With recent budget cutbacks to South Side Sox adversely affecting his desire to provide high-quality and high-volume coverage of the White Sox, I am pleased to announce that Brett is bringing his crew — writers, photographers, and even an artist — to bolster Sox On 35th coverage. You can expect to feel their impact immediately, as we are ready to hit the ground running to provide you with new content.

How about some old familiars? Both of these features will appear on Sox on 35th for the rest of the season.

The Minor League Update comes from the irascible Darren Jackson, while the Six Pack of Stats has made its 2019 debut here from several writers, including Brett Ballantini, Jordan Lazowski and Joe Resis (who wrote the one linked below):

White Sox Minor League Update: July 17, 2019 – Sox On 35th
Welp, the White Sox organization does not have a good day as all of the MiLB teams lose and some big prospect names did not show out.

Six Pack of Stats: Royals 7, White Sox 5 – Sox On 35th
Another day, another loss in Kansas City. At least this one was not a blowout, I suppose. Let's take a look at some numbers from tonight.

One more old friend from SSS past, Know Your Enemy, done up in marvelous fashion by Leigh Allan. Not sure every series will be previewed over at So35, but I think that is Brett’s lofty goal:

Know Your Enemy: Kansas City Royals – Sox On 35th
We're goin' to Kansas City, Kansas City here we come,They got some crazy little pitchers there and we're gonna hit us some Okay, not exactly how Fats Domino or James Brown put it, but the White Sox need a little razzmatazz after the weekend debacle in Oakland, and Kansas City should be a good place…

And finally, two bits of analysis from two new voices joining the SSS-So35 crew, Nik Gaur and Logan Bradley. Gaur tackles Luis Robert, revisiting comps he attached to the budding superstar a year ago and adding a new, particularly tantalizing, one. Bradley examines Reynaldo López’s inspiring first start to the second half.

Luis Robert looks more like a future superstar with each passing day – Sox On 35th
This is a follow-up to Projecting Luis Robert’s MLB Career, which was written in July 2018. Almost exactly one year ago, I wrote a post about Luis Robert and how he profiled relative to other center fielders across baseball. At the time, Robert was a very well-known, highly-regarded prospect, but was not the absolute monster he…

Did we just see a Reynaldo López breakout? – Sox On 35th
The idea for this piece DID NOT come from a desire to repress the memory of José Rondón's ninth-inning airmail into the depths of Oakland's first baseline on Sunday. It just didn't, I promise. Markedly more encouraging than that was the performance of Reynaldo López. As much as I'd rather not tell you about his…

Indeed, there is White Sox writing outside of Wu Tang SSS, and let’s start with Rick Morrissey making a case for a José Abreu extension:

Give gifted Jose Abreu a deal for all he’s been through with White Sox - Chicago Sun-Times
He clearly believes in the rebuild and has said he wants to stay. If the Sox finish below .500 this season, he’ll have played all six of his big-league seasons on losing teams. He either has an incredible pain tolerance or his understanding of the difference between winning and losing got lost in the translation when he defected from Cuba in 2013.

I can’t quite tell, but did the Tribune finally hire a White Sox beat writer (Lamond Pope)? If there’s a Trib guy in Kansas City, methinks yes, and I just missed it, sometime over the All-Star break. Maybe Paul Sullivan scurrying down to pay more attention to fights at Sox Park (between Cubs fans, natch) than the team finally convinced the world’s greatest newspaper (sic) to hire someone to cover the White Sox, after more than a year.

Anyway, here’s Lamond’s snapshot of some suddenly lowered expectations ...

Expectations for the White Sox rose, then the losses started piling up. How are they handling it? - Chicago Tribune
The White Sox were outscored 26-7 in their first four games after the All-Star break, all losses.

Finally, Merk weighs in on “good news” from the Eloy Jiménez funny bone incident:

Eloy goes on injured list with nerve contusion
The news related to Eloy Jiménez's right elbow injury sustained in the first inning of an 11-0 White Sox loss to the Royals on Tuesday night appears to be better than expected.


Really, what should we call this sort of story?

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    First Pitch
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  • 13%
    Something Else (literally)
    (5 votes)
  • 10%
    Something Else (figuratively, and because I’m kind and also tired of this poll I am listing an option in the comments)
    (4 votes)
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