View Full Version : Buster Olney's AL Spring Capsule

02-16-2005, 12:12 PM
Don't know if this has been posted or not. If it has, I'm sure the mods will act accordingly!:D:

Chicago White Sox

What must go right: The White Sox hit a lot of homers last year, but GM Kenny Williams has restructured the offense, dealing away Carlos Lee (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6161) for Scott Podsednik (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6489) and signing Jermaine Dye (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=5610) and A.J. Pierzynski (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6109). The White Sox should have a deeper offensive attack, but they've got to hope the newcomers and the increased team speed make up for the absence of Lee's big bat.

What could go wrong: The White Sox are built around their starting rotation of Mark Buehrle (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6525), Freddy Garcia (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6168), Jose Contreras (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=7043), Jon Garland (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6396) and Orlando Hernandez (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6019). Buerhle went 16-10 last season, Garcia was 9-4 for the White Sox, and the other three guys can be effective. But it's well within the realm of possibility that this group won't be as good as the White Sox need it to be, even in the balanced AL Central -- and that would be a disaster.

The X-Factor: Contreras went 5-4 with a 5.30 ERA, and Garland was 12-11 with a 4.89 ERA. They need to be better than that.

Numerically speaking: Aaron Rowand (http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/players/profile?statsId=6742) is an old-school, swing-away type of player who will be vital to the White Sox offense this year -- he had more than twice as many extra-base hits (64) as walks (30), and batted .310.


It's hard to argue with this analysis...

34 Inch Stick
02-16-2005, 01:00 PM
I think it is a fair assessment. I think he has overstated the importance of the starting pitching by failing to mention the relief. I can picture this team being one of those come from behind type of teams. Our starters will keep us in games, the relievers will hold it close and the speed will put enough pressure on teams in the 8th and 9th that they will make mistakes.

There are reasons for optimism but blind optimism would be a huge mistake.

The Racehorse
02-17-2005, 09:45 PM
A few quick hits;

1. I'm suprise Buster realized there were teams outside of NYC & Boston.

2. Hermanson is the X-factor, not Contreas, at least until mid summer. Dusty
can start and close, giving Ozzie flexibility if needed until the all-star break rolls around.

3. How is Rowand "an old-school, swing-away type of player [who] had more than twice as many extra-base hits (64) as walks (30)"? While thrilled with Aaron's '04 break-out season, when is swinging away old school? I thought back in the day, batters knew how to work a count for as many BB's as SO's?