Time to look at how Sox players have done so far this season.
We Sox fans have come to expect baseball greatness from guys like Jose Abreu and Tim Anderson. And they have delivered.
But the 2022 Sox season has seen some breakout stars who’ve made a big positive leap forward in their careers.
Star Exhibit A: DYLAN CEASE. The guy with terrific stuff and the cool retro-stache. He has quietly become one of the best pitchers in baseball. A solid pillar for the Sox future.
Star Exhibit B: ANDREW VAUGHN. The guy who is just a flat-out professional hitter. A pitcher’s nightmare. Getting better and better. Another solid pillar for the Sox future.
And there have been some lesser-role players but no-less important Sox stars in the lineup who have made a definitive step up in their careers:
Improvement Exhibit A: REYNALDO LOPEZ. The guy with the good to great stuff that just had to learn how to manage it. And he has in his key role in the Sox bullpen. Also still getting better.
Improvement Exhibit B: ADAM ENGEL. They guy with the terrific outfield glove is seemingly learning how to hit. And as he does... he becomes almost as good a replacement as the Sox outfielder he usually subs for since Sox outfielders can’t seem to go without hurting themselves.
Improvement Exhibit C: GAVIN SHEETS. He’s looking more comfortable at the plate and in right field. Has the potential to have a good career as a slugger.
Improvement Exhibit D: SEBY ZAVALA. He’s never looked better so far in his career as the Major League level. Another key replacement player for the high-priced catcher who likes to always bat around .200 every season now.
Some talented Sox players have taken a step back but still have time to find themselves in this dogfight of a division race and make big contributions to our South Side heroes...
None of these guys has consistently pitched up to his potential. Sox will need them to find their touch if the Pale Hose are to do anything significant with the 2022 season.
(Dropped off this List: YOAN MONCADA.)
Moncada seems to be now be finding himself so he has been left off this list.)
So with all the disappointments of the first portion of the 2022 season... the Sox are in position to seize the day and the Division if they can find a way to keep players on the field without hurting themselves. And find a way to win home games.