Tha Sports Junkies 101

Chicago White Sox: New Year, New Team

Chicago White Sox: New Year, New Team Image via Sportsgraphics36


Chicago White Sox

From left to right: Todd Frazier, Brett Lawrie, Tim Anderson – Photo: RCHDJ10 – Image Via

To say 2016 did not go well for the Chicago White Sox would have to be an understatement. Even words like disappointing and disheartening could not match the heartache all White Sox fans were forced to endure.

They were led to believe last year would be a new year. Talks of a Crosstown Classic in October finally seemed to make sense. Then things went south (no pun intended) quickly in May and June when the Sox finished 23-32 in those two months.

But at least some positives came out of that 78-84 season. It led to the departure of fan-hated manager Robin Ventura. It was also the debut season of top-prospect shortstop Tim Anderson. Todd Frazier hit 40 home runs. Another top prospect debuted, Carson Fulmer, but he struggled a bit after his first appearance (striking out Albert Pujols on three pitches), and finished the season in AAA.

Off-Season Moves:

Oh boy. Okay. Let’s do this.

As the horrible 2016 campaign drew closer to an end, General Manager Rick Hahn stated he will not publicly announce whether the Chi-Sox will buy a few pieces to improve for the next year or start fresh with a re-build, but said it would be clear which direction they would go after a few moves. All it took was one, Rick. The first one, but we’ll get there.

For personal matters, manager Robin Ventura issued his resignation and was replaced by bench coach Rick Renteria.

The Sox agreed to one-year contracts with second baseman Brett Lawrie, outfielder Avisail Garcia, LHP Derek Holland and first baseman Jose Abreu.

Now for the bigger splashes.

Yoan Moncada – Photo: Jeffrey Hyde – Image Via

The first “big” move the Chicago White Sox made this off-season was a trade sending ace All-star LHP Chris Sale to the Boston Red Sox for top prospects, including infielder Yoan Moncada and RHPs Michael Kopech (who hit 110 mph Tuesday), and Victor Diaz. Also in the deal was outfielder Luis Alexander Basabe.

That move made it clear owner and legend Jerry Reinsdorf gave Hahn the go-ahead to initiate a rebuild.

A day after the Sale trade, the Sox sent All-star leadoff hitter Adam Eaton to the Washington Nationals for top pitching prospects Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez and Dane Dunning.

When a word like skyrocketing is used to describe the White Sox farm system, it is no hyperbole. Before both trades, the White Sox’s top prospect was Fulmer. After both trades, Fulmer dropped to the organization’s fifth best prospect.

Still don’t want to believe it? The Sox have six players in MLB’s Top 100 prospect list (in order: Moncada, Giolito, Kopech, Lopez, Fulmer and catcher Zack Collins).

Expectations For 2017:

Considering the team traded their ace and leadoff hitter, and talks for their current ace Jose Quintana are “heating up,” 2017 doesn’t seem to be all cotton candy and lollipops for the South Side faithful. But 2017 will be an important year for the organization.

The year will put the focus on the team’s current young players, including Anderson and up-and-coming southpaw Carlos Rodon, to play to their fullest potential. Though this is important for any team going through a rebuild, the leadership from veterans, including Holland, RHPs James Shields and Miguel Gonzalez, Abreu, Frazier and left fielder Melky Cabrera, will be more important than ever.

Though 2017 may be ugly on paper, the opportunity to take a few steps forward is paying the $20 parking fee and heading straight toward the gates of U.S. Cell– wait, no, Guaranteed Rate Stadium.  


Realistically, the next year we can talk about the Chicago White Sox and their chances to contend will be in a few years, but 2017 will be an important year for the rebuild. All Sox fans need to do is ignore those obnoxious Chicago Cubs fans (not all of them are, but you know who they are), and follow Giolito’s progress in the minors. Take advantage of the low ticket prices and witness baseball first hand, but put some money aside for season tickets for the 2020 season.

Stick it out and soon you’ll lose the blues in Chicago.