This post was originally posted on Zach’s White Sox blog, “Grab Some Bench!” Check out all of their work at GrabSomeBench.com and give ’em a follow on Twitter at @Grab_Some_Bench
The trade deadline came and went a couple of hours ago, and the White Sox stood pat with their current team.
While this may have frustrated some fans a bit, as the hype surrounding the deadline has all fans hoping a trade of some sort will transpire, you have to remember what General Manager Kenny Williams has already done to this point: acquiring Kevin Youkilis, Brett Myers, and Francisco Liriano.
After answering the question marks on the ball club about a third baseman and depth in the bullpen and starting rotation, the Sox are in a pretty good place roster-wise.
On paper, it seems that the White Sox are rather complete.
The only obvious question mark that remains is the utility man on the bench, as Eduardo Escobar went to Minnesota as a part of the deal that brought Francisco Liriano to the south side of Chicago.
What you have to remember is that there is no team in baseball with zero question marks at all.
The Sox do have others question marks, whether it’s Chris Sale’s health, Jose Quintana’s consistency, or Addison Reed’s lack of experience. But there are not really any glaring holes.
Ray Olmedo was recently called up to replace Eduardo Escobar, and while E.E. was a fan favorite, he was only hitting around .200 and had a couple of questionable moments on defense in recent games. I was one of his supporters; I don’t want it to sound like I’m ripping on him. But he wasn’t going to be the difference maker in a playoff race. Ray Olmedo should be able to do pretty much everything that Escobar was doing.
On many other teams, even contending teams, you’ll find much more major, pressing doubts than their bench. This is why I think the Sox are in a good place.
With two months of baseball left, 1.5 games ahead of Detroit is a good place to be.
Sure, the Tigers have a lot of talent, but the Sox do too. And Chicago has played with much more consistency than Detroit throughout the last four months.
Thinking that the Tigers are going to prevail in the Central division is a completely legitimate belief to hold, but Sox fans should still be as optimistic about the race as possible, in large part because of the pre-deadline fortification Williams did to the roster.
Currently riding a 2-game losing streak, the Sox take on Nick Blackburn and the Minnesota Twins in the 2nd of the 3-game set at Target Field in Minneapolis tonight. Francisco Liriano takes the hill for the first time as a member of the White Sox, facing off against the team he has called his own for his entire career.
Despite the rough start he endured against the White Sox last week, Liriano has been pitching very well of late. So it seems like the Sox are in good shape for this evening’s bout, as long as they execute much better than they have defensively in the last two games. The White Sox have been so solid in that aspect all year, so I’m expecting them to bounce back in that regard immediately.
Bear down, Sox fans…these next two months are going to be fun ones.
—Posted by GSB! Founder & Managing Editor, Zach Gropper.