Alright, folks — on the morning after the eighth loss in a row, how is everyone feeling?
Yes, it’s April. Yes, teams go through this. But this season feels dark — much like 2007, which also landed after the last time the White Sox had back-to-back winning seasons. With injuries piling up, the White Sox are scraping the barrel for a somewhat cohesive lineup and failing miserably. Currently, the White Sox have the worst record and worst run differential in the American League.
This begs the question: What happened to the White Sox?
Players are getting hurt a lot. Perhaps they came to the White Sox injured, like Joe Kelly. Or they were an early victim of the hamstring bug. As I write this, there are 12 players on the injured list. Losing someone like Lance Lynn, Luis Robert, and even Garrett Crochet feels detrimental. AJ Pollock almost immediately getting hurt had many wondering what his value to the team would even be, and as proof, he hasn’t had the best return. While the news of Eloy Jiménez being out for only six to eight weeks is more positive than some suggested, it still leaves a hole in left field.
This seems to go hand-in-hand with the injuries. Watching your teammates continue to sustain injuries is hard. Feeling like you might be next is even worse. With base-running being nothing short of abysmal, and first base taking out hamstrings for the second straight spring, you have to imagine players are nervous and not able to stay focused.
Management and Trainers
Look, Tony La Russa isn’t going anywhere. You can tweet with the hashtag #FireLaRussa, boycott in the form of not giving this team a dime, or whatever else you see fit. But this weird blood oath between Jerry Reinsdorf and La Russa might outlive all of us. They could be each other’s Horcrux. As long as Jerry is around, Tony isn’t going anywhere — unless, of course, he wants to.
Hitting coach Frank Menechino seems to have the month off, because the offense is barely hitting anything. Third base coach Joe McEwing has sent runners straight into a jam. Pitching coach Ethan Katz is unable to work with the likes of Dallas Keuchel and Vince Velásquez. And is anyone teaching the team the fundamentals of baseball? As in — how to just run through first base?
This team is undoubtedly in a slump. Fans are angry or just flat-out apathetic. (I’m in the apathetic camp.) Maybe they’ll win today, and we can go back to enjoying baseball. Dylan Cease is on the mound, and he has looked promising.
But if they don’t — are you still enjoying the ride?