Welcome to the SSS Summary — a little review of what happened this past week in Chicago White Sox baseball, including on-the-field play, the front office jibber-jabber, and everything in between. Even if you don’t want to remember what happened, sorry, we will tell you anyway.
Last week, I had Elvis in my subhed; this week, it’s Barry Manilow. I do love oldies music. I listen to a lot of it, which often pops into my brain while writing. At least it helps me drudge through having to pen about this awful team.
When I started the SSS Summary in Week 5, the original thought was that the team would be pretty good and that I could compile all the awesome stuff that was happening in one place so that our readers could quickly recap the week.
How naive of me. Already by my Week 5 start, the White Sox were already showing us exactly who they would be all season long, so I really should have known better. 101 losses. Wow, just wow.
I am happy to announce that I am retiring the Summary until there’s actually satisfactory baseball to write about. It’s possible that the Summary may never be heard from again. I will keep my fingers crossed, but I honestly have no confidence that Chris Getz and company can right this sinking ship.
So, here’s to one last hurrah. Thank you, South Side Sox readers, for sticking with me and the rest of our outstanding staff through this miserable season. We can only hope (that’s all we can ever do as Sox fans) that better days lie ahead. Either that, or pick a new team.
The Recaps Worth Revisiting
Thursday, September 28: White Sox 3, Diamondbacks 1
Well, we got one lonely win to finish out 2023. Seems fitting, doesn’t it? This game, where the team offered $1 lower level tickets and free parking, fittingly slogged along, with only six hits combined for both clubs. Andrew Vaughn gave Chicago a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning with a two-run dinger off of Arizona starter Corbin Martin. Then, Yoán Moncada added an insurance run in the bottom of the fifth with a solo shot.
The Diamondbacks couldn’t get much of anything going off of White Sox pitching. They did manage to scratch across a tally in the top of the third off of starter Touki Toussaint, but the bullpen of Tanner Banks, Declan Cronin, Aaron Bummer, and Bryan Shaw shut the Snakes out. Banks got the victory, Shaw earned his fourth save, and fans who paid almost nothing to attend ... got their money’s worth.
The Defensive Disport of the Week
AV With Some First-Step Quickness
Andrew Vaughn has shown up here a few times this year. While not known for his defensive dexterity, at least it seems like AV puts the effort into making plays. When going to his right, he has +4 DRS. That ability was on full display during Thursday’s game when he made a diving grab to lead off the third inning.
The Week’s Top Three Biggest BLASTS
Eloy Jiménez, 415 feet, Tuesday, September 26
Tuesday’s game started out with a bang when the Big Baby crushed a three-run bomb in the bottom of the first to give the Sox a 3-0 lead. The excitement was brief, though, as the Diamondbacks went on to cream Chicago, 15-4.
Yoán Moncada, 415 feet, Friday, September 29
Yoyo had quite the second half — he slashed .281/.324/.464 with a .788 OPS. He smacked two homers last week, and this solo shot put the Sox on the board in the bottom of the eighth.
Yoán Moncada, 400 feet, Thursday, September 28
Will Moncada be able to keep this 2023 momentum going? Which version of him will we get in 2024? Seems like we’ve been asking those questions for many years. This four-bagger extended their lead to 3-1.
In July, pitcher Nick Nastrini came to the Good Guys from the Dodgers in the trade for Lance Lynn and Joe Kelly. Nastrini currently slots in as the system’s No. 6 prospect. He was selected out of UCLA in Round 4 (overall No. 131) of the 2021 MLB Draft by the Dodgers and quickly shot to Double-A in his first full season with them.
The 6´3´´, 215-pound righty has a four-pitch mix that includes a 94-96 mph fastball, mid-80s slider, 78-82 mph curveball, and a mid-80s changeup. The Sox first assigned him to Double-A Birmingham, where he started four games and went 3-0 with a 4.22 ERA over 21 1⁄3 innings. With the Barons, he had an outstanding 13.09 K/9 and 2.95 BB/9.
At the end of August, the team promoted the 23-year-old to Triple-A Charlotte, where he also made four starts. Nastrini went 1-2 with a respectable 4.12 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 19 2⁄3 innings. He unfortunately lowered his K/9 a bit to 10.53 and upped his BB/9 to a dismal 4.58. Nastrini definitely possesses the tools of a front-end starter, but like so many of the Sox pitchers, finding control and command will be vital for success. A trip to the bigs at some point in 2024 would not be surprising for Nastrini, and he is the most likely candidate to break camp with the club presuming a strong spring and GM Chris Getz failing to fill out the four open spots in the rotation with proven big-leaguers. So, keep an eye out for the big righty.
Other Tasty Tidbits
The Arizona Fall League started on October 3, and the White Sox have eight players assigned to the Glendale Desert Dogs: pitchers Adisyn Coffey, Josimar Cousin, Jake Eder, Fraser Ellard and Jordan Leasure, and position players Jacob Burke, Colson Montgomery, and Bryan Ramos are all headed out west for additional development.
Montgomery is the highest-ranked prospect named to an AFL roster, but nine others on MLB’s Top 100 are also in the circuit. The season runs through Thursday, November 9, and culminates in the AFL Championship on November 11.
Running Down the Rehabbers
On September 26, the White Sox placed Luis Robert Jr. on the 10-day IL with a mild MCL left knee sprain. The injury ultimately ended his season, with the recovery initially expected to be two to four weeks. Recent talk is that he might be inactive until February, which definitely doesn’t qualify as “mild.” Robert hurt his left knee when he stole second base in the top of the first inning in the series finale at Boston last Sunday. La Pantera had an incredible season in 2023, and was free of the serious scares that has plagued his young career all summer — until the knee injury. Despite a slow September, 2023 was a breakout year for the All-Star: He slashed .264/.315/.542 with an OPS of .857 and a 5.0 WAR. He slugged 38 dingers, swiped 20 bags, and had 80 RBIs in 145 games.
Nothing! No more White Sox baseball for five months, but we’ll still have plenty of offseason writing here at South Side Sox. Be sure to check us out for postseason rundowns, AFL coverage, Winter Meetings review, and prospect analysis. So, don’t forget about us; we’ll be here with all of that, and back with more terrible Pale Hose baseball in 2024 before you know it.
What kind of offseason do you predict the White Sox will have?
This poll is closed
Lame. They will make minor moves on the cheap that won’t change a thing.
Mediocre. It’s the brand after all. The might sign one decent/good player and think it will solve all their problems.
Great. Chris Getz gets the all keys to the kingdom and makes big, bold moves to shake things up.