Saturday, April 13, 2024

White Sox Update: Shouldn't You People Be in Charlotte? Edition


Statisticians like Bill James coined the term 'replacement level' to classify a player who is there to fill the position and makes no impact on the team itself, as well as the game of baseball in general. I can only imagine that they were thinking about players like roughly 90% of the current roster of the Chicago White Sox. Because...WOOF.

Basically, any player on this team that's playing above replacement level...essentially got lucky. This team put Garrett Crochet in the no-win position of taking the Opening Day start, despite never starting a game and being injured for parts of the past few years, and he somehow has been the team's best player. Crochet has already garnered 21 strikeouts and is sitting on a 2.00 ERA, and despite the fact that he goes against the Reds today, a team that can possibly outdo even a good pitcher, he's expected to succeed. But I feel like it wasn't even Chris Getz' intention for that to happen. He must have gone 'oh, that worked? Huh. Alright. Good for him I guess'.

The people that are succeeding so far for the White Sox, barring Gavin Sheets, who's a rare returning player doing what he's supposed to, are all guys that were afterthought additions to this roster. Steven Wilson, who came over in exchange for Dylan Cease, was a last minute addition to the bullpen, and he's been one of its most consistent members. Jordan Leasure was an Opening Day callup who was technically supposed to make the starting rotation before being plugged into the 'pen and he still has a 0.00 ERA. Korey Lee hitting .300 backing up Martin Maldonado is just...something that could have happened out of the gate last year in Houston, and I don't think it was the team's intention to capitalize off that. It's really just 'huh, they're both here, and Lee might start for us......great.' Hell, Max Stassi's hurt, so they're just trying to make Korey Lee feel at home. 

...they really went and got all three Houston catchers...except for the one who's actually doing well this year. It takes SKILL to make a decision that poor. And I fully believe they're doing this on purpose to get draft picks.

Looking around at this team, you see so many replacement choices. A lot of this is because the core battery of the team [Jimenez, Robert, Moncada] is all injured right now. Moncada was actually off to a nice start, immediately gets injured. Of course. There are no remnants of the Sox' 2023 starting rotation left here, because either all of them left or they were demoted, like Michael Kopech. Even Jesse Scholtens, the magic hat starter from last year, has began the year on the IL. So the team's only choices besides Crochet are people like Erick Fedde [who, to be fair, is alright], Chris Flexen, Michael Soroka and, uh...some bullpen guys. Right now Reynaldo Lopez, who would have been there 'screw it, plug him in' depth starter last, like, doing insanely well for Atlanta. He's like the only guy in that rotation that's got over elbow issues, which is really something when you think about it. 

Now, because of the re-tooling done in the last few years to discourage tanking, there are less teams right now like the White Sox. You don't see many other teams trying to lose, it's really just them and the A's [though, as I'll get into soon enough, the A's are trying to lose for a completely different reason]. I guess the hope is that what happened to Detroit and Baltimore happens to them, and they get some great prospects out of it AND are able to sustain them,'s gonna take a lot of teams like this to get there, and I don't think White Sox fans are gonna love skipping across town to see Andrew Benintendi strike out 3 times a game. 

Coming Tomorrow [?]: Ironically a former White Sox starter who's pitching a lot better this year.

1 comment:

  1. I thought I heard that based on the rules the Sox can't be a lock for the #1 pick, but I'm not sure about that. The Chicago sports radio haven't been kind to the Sox management for sure.