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After 8 games, who's doing well and who isn't?

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A quick look at baseball reference gives a snapshot after 8 games. 

Here's the rank of hitters in OPS+

Mercedes - 308
Grandal - 148
Collins - 121
Robert - 113
Abreu - 100
Eaton - 100
Moncada - 97
Madrigal - 95
Hamilton - 91
Vaughn - 71
Anderson - 66
Garcia - negative 43

Here are the starters by ERA
Lynn - zero
Rodon - zero
Giolito - 4.22
Cease - 5.79
Keuchel - 7

Bullpen by ERA
Kopech - zero
Crochet - zero
Bummer - zero (first game meltdown was unearned runs)
Heuer - 2.45
Ruiz - 2.7
Hendriks - 7.71
Marshall - 9.82
Foster - 27

What conclusions can you draw from this? 

Hitting

- Mercedes is carrying the offense at the moment. 
- Grandal and Collins are hitting quite will - Grandal with the high OBP, Collins with more power
- Abreu isn't warmed up yet
- Eaton is league average, which is an improvement over Mazara. 
- Moncada looks much worse than this number, because he's picked it up in the last couple of games.
- Madrigal isn't hitting as well, but his OBP is very high. 
- Vaughn is getting acclimated to MLB. 
- Anderson is off to a slow start. Getting normal Anderson back will jump start this offense. 
- Garcia is having an awful start, but isn't really this bad.  TLR should look for every opportunity not to play him. Mendick is a better choice until Anderson returns.

Starters

They need to go deeper into games. 
- Only Keuchel is off, but he did pretty well in his second start until the 6th. 
- Rodon's first start looks very promising
- Cease still has a lot of work to do
- Giolito will be better than this

Bullpen

TLR hasn't figured out the rhythm to get Hendriks into the right situations yet.
- Kopech and Crochet look awesome and are real weapons
- Sox need Bummer to settle in and be a force in the 8th
- Heuer as the 3rd guy (outside future starters Kopech and Crochet) is solid
- Foster and Marshall aren't this bad
- Ruiz might pitch his way into a bigger role, reprising Cordero's job from last year. 

Overall

The Sox are a work in progress. Defense has been bad. Starters are getting stretched out. Hitting has been streaky. 

The team needs to be healthy - Anderson and Engel's return will improve the team a lot. 

The bullpen and TLR haven't been in synch. but they will get there. 


 

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1 hour ago, VAfan said:

A quick look at baseball reference gives a snapshot after 8 games. 

Here's the rank of hitters in OPS+

Mercedes - 308
Grandal - 148
Collins - 121
Robert - 113
Abreu - 100
Eaton - 100
Moncada - 97
Madrigal - 95
Hamilton - 91
Vaughn - 71
Anderson - 66
Garcia - negative 43

Here are the starters by ERA
Lynn - zero
Rodon - zero
Giolito - 4.22
Cease - 5.79
Keuchel - 7

Bullpen by ERA
Kopech - zero
Crochet - zero
Bummer - zero (first game meltdown was unearned runs)
Heuer - 2.45
Ruiz - 2.7
Hendriks - 7.71
Marshall - 9.82
Foster - 27

What conclusions can you draw from this? 

Hitting

- Mercedes is carrying the offense at the moment. 
- Grandal and Collins are hitting quite will - Grandal with the high OBP, Collins with more power
- Abreu isn't warmed up yet
- Eaton is league average, which is an improvement over Mazara. 
- Moncada looks much worse than this number, because he's picked it up in the last couple of games.
- Madrigal isn't hitting as well, but his OBP is very high. 
- Vaughn is getting acclimated to MLB. 
- Anderson is off to a slow start. Getting normal Anderson back will jump start this offense. 
- Garcia is having an awful start, but isn't really this bad.  TLR should look for every opportunity not to play him. Mendick is a better choice until Anderson returns.

Starters

They need to go deeper into games. 
- Only Keuchel is off, but he did pretty well in his second start until the 6th. 
- Rodon's first start looks very promising
- Cease still has a lot of work to do
- Giolito will be better than this

Bullpen

TLR hasn't figured out the rhythm to get Hendriks into the right situations yet.
- Kopech and Crochet look awesome and are real weapons
- Sox need Bummer to settle in and be a force in the 8th
- Heuer as the 3rd guy (outside future starters Kopech and Crochet) is solid
- Foster and Marshall aren't this bad
- Ruiz might pitch his way into a bigger role, reprising Cordero's job from last year. 

Overall

The Sox are a work in progress. Defense has been bad. Starters are getting stretched out. Hitting has been streaky. 

The team needs to be healthy - Anderson and Engel's return will improve the team a lot. 

The bullpen and TLR haven't been in synch. but they will get there. 


 

As with last season, let’s see what happens when they face good teams (Angels certainly looking the part so far) and excellent RHPers.

Other than Pittsburgh and maybe the Brewers when Woodruff and Burnes aren’t going, the NL Central looks tougher than expected.

Better than having to face the NL East, but probably a toss-up with the top heavy NL West where there are two strong teams and three pretty bad ones.

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My takeaway...despite a few injuries and underperformance from several individuals, this team is going to be really good if they stay relatively healthy. Consider the following MLB ranks and understand, if they sustain this all season, wins will most certainly follow (alot of them);

Offense - 5th in FWAR and wRC+ 

Pitching - 7th in fWAR and xFIP, 5th in FIP

Run differential - 5th

Truth is the advanced metrics tell the story of a 6-2 or 5-3 team, not 4-4. However, SSS and close late inning blown leads have resulted in a 4-4 record. Those things will even out over 162.

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I'm not sure how Engel returning helps them a ton. If they want to give him LF and send Vaughn to the alternate site, that's one thing, but otherwise he'll just be a late inning defensive sub for AV.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, HOFHurt35 said:

If this team just catches the ball, they're easily 6-2 or 7-1. 

Yes.  People still aren’t realizing they are about to see a historically good team. This is easily going to be the best White Sox team ever assembled.  Even this year, which is a couple years ahead of peak IMO.  I STILL think this holds up even with Eloy gone, though it’s going to be closer because of that.  
 

Eloy going down sucks because I thought we were going to steamroll the reputations of the best Yankee teams in history   

 

Edited by Jerksticks
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1 hour ago, Jerksticks said:

Yes.  People still aren’t realizing they are about to see a historically good team. This is easily going to be the best White Sox team ever assembled.  Even this year, which is a couple years ahead of peak IMO.  I STILL think this holds up even with Eloy gone, though it’s going to be closer because of that.  
 

Eloy going down sucks because I thought we were going to steamroll the reputations of the best Yankee teams in history   

 

Mercedes for now makes up for Eloy but they could end with three DHs. 

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Jose Quintana certainly hasn’t been doing well while Joe Musgrove is doing fun things.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Jerksticks said:

Yes.  People still aren’t realizing they are about to see a historically good team. This is easily going to be the best White Sox team ever assembled.  Even this year, which is a couple years ahead of peak IMO.  I STILL think this holds up even with Eloy gone, though it’s going to be closer because of that.  
 

Eloy going down sucks because I thought we were going to steamroll the reputations of the best Yankee teams in history   

 

Who are you planning to replace Lynn (2022) and then Giolito with?

Kopech will be one, but who else?

Edited by caulfield12

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25 minutes ago, caulfield12 said:

Who are you planning to replace Lynn (2022) and then Giolito with?

Kopech will be one, but who else?

Who says we don't resign Lynn? 2y/40m

Get.It.Done.Hahn

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37 minutes ago, ron883 said:

Who says we don't resign Lynn? 2y/40m

Get.It.Done.Hahn

JR.   That said, if TLR’s still around, the odds are probably 50/50.

But, when we start piling up the risk with Grandal, Keuchel, Lynn, Abreu...if two of them fall off a cliff, then what?

Unless we can expand payroll into the $145-165 million range, we’re likely to be an incomplete team.

So the only way to overcome a mid tier payroll is relatively simple: Robert, Moncada and one of Kopech/Crochet have to be stars.

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4 hours ago, caulfield12 said:

JR.   That said, if TLR’s still around, the odds are probably 50/50.

But, when we start piling up the risk with Grandal, Keuchel, Lynn, Abreu...if two of them fall off a cliff, then what?

Unless we can expand payroll into the $145-165 million range, we’re likely to be an incomplete team.

So the only way to overcome a mid tier payroll is relatively simple: Robert, Moncada and one of Kopech/Crochet have to be stars.

What makes you think they won’t?

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22 hours ago, caulfield12 said:

JR.   That said, if TLR’s still around, the odds are probably 50/50.

But, when we start piling up the risk with Grandal, Keuchel, Lynn, Abreu...if two of them fall off a cliff, then what?

Unless we can expand payroll into the $145-165 million range, we’re likely to be an incomplete team.

So the only way to overcome a mid tier payroll is relatively simple: Robert, Moncada and one of Kopech/Crochet have to be stars.

This is exactly right.

Moncada costs the Sox $6.8M in 2021 and will cost $13.8M in 2022, $17.8M in 2023, and $24.8M in 2024. Robert and Eloy become $3 Million more expensive every year. Tim Anderson will be getting more expensive and has some club options that are nearly double his 2021 salary coming up. Gio is going into his Arb-2 year and the Sox are also trying to extend him. None of that is bad money, but the Sox have around $110M committed to 2022 without accounting for players in Pre-Arb (Madrigal, Cease, Kopech, Foster, Heuer), and the other Arb guys who will be brought back (Gio, Marshall, Engel, Fry?, Lopez?)

but keeping the payroll at 133 means having to replace Lynn, Rodon, Eaton, and Leury very cheap or internally. 
 

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On 4/10/2021 at 6:31 PM, soxfan49 said:

I'm not sure how Engel returning helps them a ton. If they want to give him LF and send Vaughn to the alternate site, that's one thing, but otherwise he'll just be a late inning defensive sub for AV.

Engel is a super sub for sure. If our outfield is Engel Robert Eaton there is no way we are winning the division. 

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After games of 4/11 the Sox MLB ranks are:

6th in runs at 5.67/game

11th in AVG at .242

3rd in OBP at .354

15th in SLG at .390

9th in OPS at .745

18th in ISO at .148

8th in lowest K% at 22.3%

1st in BB% at 13.6%

So the offense is excellent at walking (which is very, very unusual for the Sox) and as a result very good at getting on base. This is leading to above average scoring despite mediocre hitting with sub-par power. Part of this of course is due to the absence of Eloy and TA.

Anderson coming back will help a lot with both the offense and defense, and Engel coming back will help the defense a lot and the offense a little.

 

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