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View Full Version : 2012 Sox best team defensively since...?


chisoxfanatic
07-25-2012, 09:42 PM
I've been a Sox fan for getting closer to a quarter century now, and there are few teams who I remember being as defensively sound as this one. Our catchers are gunning down base stealers. Our infielders are knowing which base to throw to in almost every situation. Our outfielders are making great catches and have a great arm to gun down runners who dare try to stretch their hits an extra base. Robin Ventura stated that he was working with fundamentals during spring training, and it's so apparent.

I can't remember the last Sox team that was so defensively sound. Defense definitely is a huge strength for this team. How many Sox teams can you remember being so defensively sound? And, which was the last team that you think was THIS good defensively?

WhiteSox5187
07-25-2012, 09:56 PM
I've been a Sox fan for getting closer to a quarter century now, and there are few teams who I remember being as defensively sound as this one. Our catchers are gunning down base stealers. Our infielders are knowing which base to throw to in almost every situation. Our outfielders are making great catches and have a great arm to gun down runners who dare try to stretch their hits an extra base. Robin Ventura stated that he was working with fundamentals during spring training, and it's so apparent.

I can't remember the last Sox team that was so defensively sound. Defense definitely is a huge strength for this team. How many Sox teams can you remember being so defensively sound? And, which was the last team that you think was THIS good defensively?

The 2010 team was pretty sound defensively though AJ wasn't as good. 2005 was pretty solid as well. Maybe it was just that the White Sox had no concept of defense prior to 2005 but that team certainly seems like it was the best defensive team in my lifetime.

Lip Man 1
07-25-2012, 11:08 PM
If you think these guys are good (and they are) you should have seen the teams in the 50's and 60's.

Lip

DSpivack
07-25-2012, 11:21 PM
I remember reading a stat recently that this Sox team has the lowest number of unearned runs in baseball in quite a few years.

TDog
07-26-2012, 12:38 AM
This is a very good defensive team. I liked it in April, before I realized how good Rios was going to be in right. I don't know if it is the best, but it is on the short list for the last four decades.

The 2005 team had a very good defensive year. Uribe had a great year at short. Crede and Uribe may have had their best defensive years in 2005, and they kept it up in the postseason.

The White Sox, since the late 1960s have rarely had good defensive teams. Maybe that is because fans demanded more offense. When Jerry Manuel was managing, he said the reality of baseball at end of the 20th century was that you could build a team strong in only two of the three facets of the game, hitting, pitching and defense. He said in the American league, you couldn't win without hitting and pitching, and sacrificing defense was a necessity. Whether that was an accurate assessment of the reality of the time is not as important as the fact that he consciously sacrificed defense.

At the end of the 1960s and in the 1970s, the Sox had horrible defensive teams. The 1970 team was generally recognized as the worst defensively in the American League, although they were strong up the middle with Aparicio and Berry winning Gold Gloves. Knoop was one of the great defensive second basemen of his generation, and Ed Herrmann was an excellent defensive catcher. Yet, they led the AL in giving up 100 unearned run and led the league with 165 errors in 165 games. Their defense led the league with 187 double plays as well. The 1977 team was horribly, horribly bad as well, but they didn't get to enough balls to get charged with errors. I remember an April game where Rickie Zisk appeared to be camped under a lazy fly ball about 20 feet from me, and even I could see the ball was going to land 20 feet behind him for a double.

Frater Perdurabo
07-26-2012, 05:47 AM
There have been some excellent defensive teams even in recent Sox history, such as the 1990-1994 teams.

I think what makes this team so strong defensively, in addition to strength up the middle, is Rios' CF range but RF arm in RF, Beckham's SS range at 2B, and Viciedo, in addition to his RF arm in LF, fielding much better than anyone expected.

doublem23
07-26-2012, 05:58 AM
There have been some excellent defensive teams even in recent Sox history, such as the 1990-1994 teams.

I think what makes this team so strong defensively, in addition to strength up the middle, is Rios' CF range but RF arm in RF, Beckham's SS range at 2B, and Viciedo, in addition to his RF arm in LF, fielding much better than anyone expected.

I was going to say, I think this team is probably the best defensive team since 1993... Ventura, Ozzie, and Cora in their prime... Big Frank was still young enough that he was a an average/good defensive 1B... Officer Karkovice behind the plate... Rains, One Dog, and Burks around the OF. Solid.

bigdommer
07-26-2012, 08:17 AM
The 2005 team had a very good defensive year. Uribe had a great year at short. Crede and Uribe may have had their best defensive years in 2005, and they kept it up in the postseason.



Iguchi was also very solid at 2nd base, save throwing that double play ball away in the playoffs.

OF was super solid too. Rowand was a top 5 defensive CF that year, Dye probably peaked defensively, and despite Pods having zero arm he had average CF range in LF.

If the voting wasn't so flawed, I think that team would have had 3-4 gold gloves that year. MB, Uribe, and Crede were hands down better than Kenny Rogers, Jeter, and Chavez, but those guys had the reputation and people put their names down without thinking. I think Rowand was comparable to Wells that year.

BainesHOF
07-28-2012, 12:27 AM
I think the 2005 and 2012 teams are about equal, though I'd give the 2012 the edge if I had to choose one. Ramirez is so good that people take him for granted. He and Beckham are a tremendous double-play combination.

voodoochile
07-28-2012, 01:38 AM
I think the 2005 and 2012 teams are about equal, though I'd give the 2012 the edge if I had to choose one. Ramirez is so good that people take him for granted. He and Beckham are a tremendous double-play combination.

And Youkilis really solidified the infield. He's not the best 3B ever, but he makes all the plays you'd expect a 3B to make which is more than you can say for Hudson. Tank has even been pretty solid in the OF notwithstanding a couple of bad plays this week. Again, he's not above average even, but with De Aza and Rios covering so much ground Tank doesn't need to be and he is showing good instincts and hustle like on the collision play tonight when he backed it up and got the out at second. That's a long way to go for a LF for a play that is no where near his main responsibility. I admit I was really surprised to see him there to grab the ball and then ecstatic when he managed to get the ball to second in time for the out. As close as the game was all night long at the time that looked like a HUGE play.

It's been talked about before and I'll even take a mea culpa to some extent, but one of the main differences has been the fundamentals. It's obvious this team understands where it's supposed to be defensively 95% of the time and they get there too. Watching games this season I see other teams make mistakes the Sox used to make all the time and now no longer do (or not nearly as often). I didn't even realize how bad it was until you see how good it is.

:tiphat: Sox Coaching staff, it's like night and day and... well... thanks...

Mingo
07-28-2012, 04:49 PM
Best D since the early to mid-60s and I've watched every team since than.

The absolute mindblower is Viciedo's performance in LF - the dude is money in the field - he has a real good chance to be a future All -Star.

Beckham has not met expectations at the plate, but in the field - he is absolutely a key player - range, arm, fearlessness at 2nd.

There has been uncommon fucus from this team -which shows up on the defense especially. That I would attribute to Robin and his coaches.

LITTLE NELL
07-28-2012, 05:02 PM
Since the days of my favorite Sox players along with Lollar and Rivera.
http://media-cache0.pinterest.com/upload/89438742569915479_HgAINRk3_c.jpg

Mingo
07-29-2012, 09:16 AM
Those are my "original" Sox too - thanks Nell. :)

TheVulture
07-29-2012, 05:31 PM
The 2010 team was pretty sound defensively though AJ wasn't as good. 2005 was pretty solid as well. Maybe it was just that the White Sox had no concept of defense prior to 2005 but that team certainly seems like it was the best defensive team in my lifetime.

The Sox generally had outstanding defense in the 1990-1996 range. In fact, I'd probably take the '93-'94 defense over the 2005 team with Karkovice behind the plate giving them the edge. Raines was no great shakes in left, but he wasn't too bad, kind of like Pods, but probably a little better. Otherwise they pretty much had plus defense all around.

WhiteSox5187
07-29-2012, 05:59 PM
The Sox generally had outstanding defense in the 1990-1996 range. In fact, I'd probably take the '93-'94 defense over the 2005 team with Karkovice behind the plate giving them the edge. Raines was no great shakes in left, but he wasn't too bad, kind of like Pods, but probably a little better. Otherwise they pretty much had plus defense all around.

I was five in 1993 so I don't really remember much about those teams in teams other than thinking that Frank Thomas was going to hit a home run every time he came up to bat, but wasn't Ozzie's ability as a shortstop greatly diminished after he tore his knee up in 1992? I don't remember anything about his range or anything like that but I thought his mobility was greatly affected after that.

Lip Man 1
07-29-2012, 06:01 PM
5187:

It was but not as much as you'd think. He worked very hard to come back and with his experience and knowledge of how to play hitters and so forth, he was still very, very good.

Lip

WhiteSox5187
07-29-2012, 06:07 PM
5187:

It was but not as much as you'd think. He worked very hard to come back and with his experience and knowledge of how to play hitters and so forth, he was still very, very good.

Lip

So he was kind of like Jeter as in he had limited range but just knew exactly where to position himself? Ozzie was another player that I loved, he was funny and also when I was 8 years old and my brother was five and my brother asked "Mr. Guillen, may I have your autograph?" while he was stretching actually stopped and said "In just a minute son," and apologized when he had to leave for some reason and couldn't sign his score card but gave us a high five.

Frater Perdurabo
07-29-2012, 07:15 PM
So he was kind of like Jeter as in he had limited range but just knew exactly where to position himself? Ozzie was another player that I loved, he was funny and also when I was 8 years old and my brother was five and my brother asked "Mr. Guillen, may I have your autograph?" while he was stretching actually stopped and said "In just a minute son," and apologized when he had to leave for some reason and couldn't sign his score card but gave us a high five.

I think Ozzie was better defensively, even after the injury, than Jeter has been at any point in his career.

Lip Man 1
07-29-2012, 09:21 PM
Before the injury Ozzie was as acrobatic a shortstop as I ever saw (and I saw Aparicio) plus he had a strong, accurate arm. He was really very, very good.

I have a highlight on my 1990 tape of a game against Baltimore at Comiskey Park. One of the O's hit a shot that short hopped Scott Fletcher at second. The ball deflected off his chest to Ozzie. Ozzie off balance with a runner right on top of him, grabbed the ball bare handed, stepped on the base for the force, leaped to get some leverage on his throw and gunned the runner out at first.

It was one of the most incredible plays I've seen because the deflection threw off the timing of the play...Ozzie when he bare handed the ball actually had to reach back for it, then recover his balance enough to start the rest of the play. Amazing.

Lip

TheVulture
07-30-2012, 12:44 PM
It was kind of a joke Ozzie only won a single gold glove. He had to have been the best shortstop outside of Vizquel and Smith during my lifetime. Maybe I'm biased, I sure saw him play more than any other shortstop. Of course, I think Karko was one of the best I've seen behind the plate, too...if he was a .280 hitter that would probably be a consensus view.

doublem23
07-30-2012, 12:47 PM
It was kind of a joke Ozzie only won a single gold glove. He had to have been the best shortstop outside of Vizquel and Smith during my lifetime. Maybe I'm biased, I sure saw him play more than any other shortstop.

I don't think he ever recovered as an elite level defensive SS after that collision and injury he suffered early in 1992. Never quite the same player after that.

slavko
07-31-2012, 06:39 AM
Close this thread. It's cursed their fielding.

doublem23
07-31-2012, 08:02 AM
Close this thread. It's cursed their fielding.

There's no such thing as curses.