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BrianAnderson

1 surprise, 1 disappointment, 1 dark horse

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Feel like we should talk about something new after a month off. So how about something simple to start us off...

 

Name:

 

1 surprise

1 disappointment

1 dark horse

 

 

I'll start..

 

 

1 surprise - I'm shocking myself even saying this, and it's wishful thinking, Matt Davidson figures it out. Strikeouts go down to where he's a serviceable piece to our plans in 2019 and 2020. Maybe as a 3B. Maybe at DH. Maybe at LF. Maybe at 1B. Basically Delmonicos role.

1 disappointment - Hate to be the eternal pessimist, but I have three. Although the last one leads into my dark horse candidate. I'll start with Nicky Delmonico - I'm going to unfortunately predict he'll be in AAA by seasons end. I think that Lopez serves as our #5 for 2-3 years, but ultimately isn't what we hoped. And finally, disappointment in Fulmer.

1- dark horse - which feeds into dark horse. I don't think many of us are optimistic about Fulmer as a starter. I think we are hoping he can do it, but I think as a dark horse he turns into a VERY, very solid setup man for our next 3-4 years.

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1 surprise - I'm going with Matt Skole, he will come up from Charlotte due to an injury and hit like he belongs in the majors.

 

1 disappointment - Sorry Miguel Gonzalez, but I think you will have a James Shields type year this year.

 

1 dark horse - Leury Garcia to step up, wrestle Centre Field from Engel and be the every day centre fielder.

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Surprise- Adam Engel, I think he will hit .250+ with 15 HR and 15 SB

 

Disappointment: Reynaldo Lopez, his walk rate will really hurt him throughout the year

 

Dark Horse: Nicky Delmonico, I just love this guys swing and I think he will prove to be a big part of the future.

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Surprise- I think Giolito proves to be our indisputable ace, at least until the arrival of Kopech (who will be Sale like).

 

Disappointment- Moncada is going to strike out a TON. He'll put up a decent OPS because of the eye, but he will never reach expected levels.

 

Dark Horse- I think Cordell comes up, steals Engel's job away and becomes our everyday CF for the immediate future.

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QUOTE (BigHurt3515 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 03:09 PM)
Surprise- Adam Engel, I think he will hit .250+ with 15 HR and 15 SB

 

Disappointment: Reynaldo Lopez, his walk rate will really hurt him throughout the year

 

Dark Horse: Nicky Delmonico, I just love this guys swing and I think he will prove to be a big part of the future.

 

Agree on all three. Lopez looked really bad in ST. Basically a two-pitch pitcher now and has bad fastball command. OTOH, I thought Engel looked great.

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QUOTE (BigHurt3515 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 10:09 AM)
Surprise- Adam Engel, I think he will hit .250+ with 15 HR and 15 SB

 

Disappointment: Reynaldo Lopez, his walk rate will really hurt him throughout the year

 

Dark Horse: Nicky Delmonico, I just love this guys swing and I think he will prove to be a big part of the future.

 

My list is similar

 

Surprise - Engel - not even starter level, but I think similarly to Yolmer he establishes himself as enough of a hitter that he'll have a decent 4-5 year run in majors due to versatility and defense.

 

Disappointment - Reynaldo Lopez, funny how he was the least disappointing guy in AAA last year after that 8-9 start run. But the whole "starts off looking good then hits a wall in 4th inning" just gives me the uneasy bullpen feeling. Luckily we have the space to let him keep developing. I do think he'll be lights out in bullpen.

 

Dark Horse: Juan Minaya - he impressed me last year handling the high stress situations after probably starting year expecting just to be a rarely used reliever. I think that experience treats him well this year with pressure tamped down and he lets loose.

 

Now org wide?

 

Surprise - Alex Call - I don't know if it will be him, but I just feel like the injuries to robert/adolfo will allow one of the other A-outfielders to take advantage full force. So, yeah, one of Call,Fisher, Gonzalez, Booker, Dedelow...one says "I will make majors!". I should have went with basabe. Oh well.

 

Disappointment - Trying to think of someone that would be unexpected disappointing. I'm gonna go with Gavin Sheets. His makeup is great and he was awesome at soxfest. But there is a lot of pressure for him to rake so much that he could easily fall way back this year.

 

Dark Horse - Going with my 2016 intl FA fix...gonna take Anthony Coronado. Maybe his k rate will be super high, but I'm gonna bet on his power continuing to advance and impress people.

The better pick is probably Curbelo.

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Surprise: Lucas Giolito becomes the #1 and gets an all star spot

 

Disappointment: Avisail Garcia regresses and last season was an aberration.

 

Dark Horse: Matt Davidson takes over full time at 3rd base and brings his average up into the .260s.

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Surprise: Adam Engel hits a respectable number and shows some power

 

Disappointment: Lucas Giolitto, some redflags in his numbers last year

 

Dark Horse: I know it isn't a major leaguer, but this is the year that the Latin American program starts to see some movement up the rankings lists.

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Surprise: "The Bullpen". I think the pen will shock people this year. Soria and Jones will be capable closers. Avilan, Bummer and others will provide variety of necessary depth options. I am also still not sold Carson Fulmer doesn't end up in pen long term. Maybe focusing on fewer secondary offerings can allow his command to settle in

 

Disappointment: Michael Kopech (I think command issues delay his ascension to Chicago)

 

Dark Horse: Matt Davidson. We all know he'll hit for power, I think he goes for 30+ homers, but I think he lowers his K rate, improves his walk rate this year, leading him to being a much more viable bat. Maybe fools gold here, but I gotta run it.

Edited by kwolf68

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Surprise: Yolmer Sanchez is good enough that we're questioning why we'd want to replace him next offseason.

Disappointment: Tim Anderson is bad enough that we're questioning whether he's a big leaguer next offseason.

 

Dark Horse: Carson Fulmer. I think the 2016 callup did way more damage to this kid's preparation than we think, but he's starting to get to the point where he might realize he has the stuff to be a big leaguer and he's starting to trust that stuff, rather than overthrowing everything. I think he'll struggle early, but if we stick with him there could be a breakout in the 2nd half.

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Surprise: The White Sox compete for WC and finish around .500, Engel becomes a solid player

 

Disappointment: Lopez and Kopech are both wild and inconsistent

 

Darkhorse: Luis Robert is in AAA by September and makes the OD roster in '19, also Moncada/Sanchez in Gold Glove convo

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QUOTE (knightni @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 10:23 AM)
Surprise: Lucas Giolito becomes the #1 and gets an all star spot

 

Disappointment: Avisail Garcia regresses and last season was an aberration.

 

Dark Horse: Matt Davidson takes over full time at 3rd base and brings his average up into the .260s.

 

Is that really surprising in a rotation featuring Shields, Fulmer, Gonzalez and possibly Santiago at some point? haha

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QUOTE (ChiliIrishHammock24 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 02:18 PM)
So is Darkhorse just MORE of a surprise then?

 

 

Surprise - Giolito

Disappointment - Davidson

Darkhorse - Engel

 

lol

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Surprise: Nicky Delmonico. I believe he will hit fairy well this year and will flash enough defensively to turn himself into a long-term OF option for us.

 

Dissapointment: Adam Engel. I know some want to believe he might have righted the ship offensively, but I remain skeptical and believe he simply ends up a 4th OF type.

 

Darkhorse: Nate Jones. I think he stays healthy and reestablishes himself as an elite reliever.

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QUOTE (southsider2k5 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 09:24 AM)
Disappointment: Lucas Giolitto, some redflags in his numbers last year

 

Don’t mean to nitpick I don’t know if you watched the games in ST but he is far and away our best starter and it’s not close. He’s maturing into a real pitcher versus a guy who just tries to overpower people like he did in the past. Moving the batter’s eyes around, locating pitches well, taking a little on/off pitches, sharper breaking stuff, fastball with more life than in recent past. There’s something to be said about confidence and mound presence now and he has it. I was absolutely terrified when he was rumored to be moved for the rental Machado this offseason and we are seeing why.

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Surprise: Nate Jones stays relatively healthy and is flipped for a "B" prospect in July.

 

Disappointment: Adam Engel improved...to the mendoza line and loses the starting CF spot to...

 

Darkhorse: Leury Garcia who turns in a 2-3 WAR season and makes a case for starting CF in 2019.

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Biggest Surprise: I was originally going to go with Gio, but I don't think anyone will be surprised with him becoming a legit #1 or #2 this season after watching him this spring. I think my biggest surprise will be the ascension of Aaron Bummer to being a legit bullpen piece. His stuff is good enough to get people out at the major league level, if he continues to build on how he looked this spring, he will be a great option in the 7th or 8th.

 

Biggest Disappointment: I'd be lying if I said I wasn't concerned about where Reynaldo is right now. His stuff is too good to be nibbling like he does. He isn't getting ahead of hitters and when he does, he isnt making good pitches to put them away. Ultimately, the Sox don't really need him to be anything more than a 5th starter, but I would really like to see him be more aggressive.

 

Biggest Dark Horse: This will sound funny for this category, but I think Moncada is my dark horse this season to become a superstar in the MLB. IT seems like both locally and nationally people have just moved onto the next shiny prospect in the Sox system, but I think Yoan is going to blossom in the leadoff role and really take his game to the next level. He was smoking everything towards the end of ST and I think he will be running a lot more this season. I like how much he was pulling the ball this spring as well, that's where you will see him tap into his power a lot more.

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QUOTE (Dunt @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 03:23 PM)
Biggest Surprise: I was originally going to go with Gio, but I don't think anyone will be surprised with him becoming a legit #1 or #2 this season after watching him this spring. I think my biggest surprise will be the ascension of Aaron Bummer to being a legit bullpen piece. His stuff is good enough to get people out at the major league level, if he continues to build on how he looked this spring, he will be a great option in the 7th or 8th.

 

Biggest Disappointment: I'd be lying if I said I wasn't concerned about where Reynaldo is right now. His stuff is too good to be nibbling like he does. He isn't getting ahead of hitters and when he does, he isnt making good pitches to put them away. Ultimately, the Sox don't really need him to be anything more than a 5th starter, but I would really like to see him be more aggressive.

 

Biggest Dark Horse: This will sound funny for this category, but I think Moncada is my dark horse this season to become a superstar in the MLB. IT seems like both locally and nationally people have just moved onto the next shiny prospect in the Sox system, but I think Yoan is going to blossom in the leadoff role and really take his game to the next level. He was smoking everything towards the end of ST and I think he will be running a lot more this season. I like how much he was pulling the ball this spring as well, that's where you will see him tap into his power a lot more.

 

Yes, I agree, people are sleeping on this kid -- both nationally and in Chicago. There's a lot of lazy analysis and old school thinking wrt to his batting average and strikeouts last year and a lot of ignoring how good his defense was (overall, certainly had some hicups) in his first season full time at 2B. The SI "scout's" preview actually said he had a "hitch" (his timing mechanism) in his swing and wouldn't be surprised to see him back in AAA this year. Come on. He has one of the prettier swings in all of baseball, especially against RHP. He rips the ball as evidenced by his exit velocity. He's going to be a star. If he can hit 280 he'll be a superstar. If he just hits 250/330/470 and plays good defense he's a 3-4 player. If he hits 280/370/520 he's a 6 WAR 2B and a superstar. He can get there imo. Won't be this year almost certainly but by the time he's 26? Sure.

Edited by chitownsportsfan

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Lopez to me is the question mark not sure if it’s conditioning or focus later in games or what. Maybe a lack of conditioning affects his focus later in starts which is flattening out his pitches. That’s my guess but could be wrong. Needs another pitch or two to succeed long term as a starter.

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QUOTE (soxforlife05 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 03:36 PM)
Lopez to me is the question mark not sure if it’s conditioning or focus later in games or what. Maybe a lack of conditioning affects his focus later in starts which is flattening out his pitches. That’s my guess but could be wrong. Needs another pitch or two to succeed long term as a starter.

 

I think he just has really s***ty command on his fastball which leads to way too many full counts. He's a big question mark and seems to have a high variance. I can see him becoming a very good 3rd starter and I can also see him becoming just a decent setup guy.

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QUOTE (chitownsportsfan @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 04:32 PM)
Yes, I agree, people are sleeping on this kid -- both nationally and in Chicago. There's a lot of lazy analysis and old school thinking wrt to his batting average and strikeouts last year and a lot of ignoring how good his defense was (overall, certainly had some hicups) in his first season full time at 2B. The SI "scout's" preview actually said he had a "hitch" (his timing mechanism) in his swing and wouldn't be surprised to see him back in AAA this year. Come on. He has one of the prettier swings in all of baseball, especially against RHP. He rips the ball as evidenced by his exit velocity. He's going to be a star. If he can hit 280 he'll be a superstar. If he just hits 250/330/470 and plays good defense he's a 3-4 player. If he hits 280/370/520 he's a 6 WAR 2B and a superstar. He can get there imo. Won't be this year almost certainly but by the time he's 26? Sure.

 

I hope so but i am "wait and see". FWIW---His 2018 spring results were a slight drop off from 2017 ST. If he starts slow, I hope they drop him down in the order for a while in case batting 1 or 2 is putting pressure on him.

 

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re: Moncada, I had no idea that he tied for 3rd in DRS among 2B last year in just 1/3rd of a season (it's a cumulative stat). I remember him looking good out there, but not that good. If he can keep that defensive play up and maintain his .804 OPS that he had last year*, then we really do have a star, even with a high strikeout rate.

 

*after his first 2 weeks up here, which I am excluding due to it being his adjustment period, through the end of the season. I usually am not a fan of omitting data in player evaluations, but in the context of a prospect seeing extended time in the Majors for the first time, I tend to allow it

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Surprise: Avi is spectacular in the wild card game, playing for the Phillies

Disappointment: Lopez, needs more Ks or more ground balls and I’m afraid neither will happen.

Dark horse: K Smith provides something at some point worth while

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QUOTE (soxforlife05 @ Mar 28, 2018 -> 02:51 PM)
Don’t mean to nitpick I don’t know if you watched the games in ST but he is far and away our best starter and it’s not close. He’s maturing into a real pitcher versus a guy who just tries to overpower people like he did in the past. Moving the batter’s eyes around, locating pitches well, taking a little on/off pitches, sharper breaking stuff, fastball with more life than in recent past. There’s something to be said about confidence and mound presence now and he has it. I was absolutely terrified when he was rumored to be moved for the rental Machado this offseason and we are seeing why.

He also dropped his arm slot. That and his increased velocity this spring are the biggest reasons why I'm more bullish on him now than I was at the end of last season.

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