OK…so far, so good!
Making it through the first week with a 4-2 record is enough to have the Sox sitting near the top of the Central Division, and despite a couple of negatives that reared their ugly heads throughout (very cold and windy weather for most of the games, and very poor outfield defense), it’s a very good beginning.
Most impressive was the barrage of home runs in every game, the last one of the weekend a “walk off,” courtesy of Dayan Viciedo to win it against the much-improved Mariners. And Sunday marked the first time the team will be wearing the “throw back” uniforms of the 1983 “Winning Ugly” regime. Watching Viciedo motor around the bases after his blast to left, in that uniform, brought back memories of Kittle, Fisk, Law, Cruz, Luzinski, et al. And it felt great!
On other positive notes, Alex Rios is red hot, and Adam Dunn found his stroke a couple of times in very key spots. Even Gordon Beckham and Alexi Ramirez had a strong week at the plate as well as at their respective positions of 2nd base and shortstop.
Chris Sale was very good in the opener last Monday and then again Sunday. Jake Peavy showed that he should be very good once again, as well as Gavin Floyd. The one pitcher who ran into all kinds of trouble (mostly in one inning) was Jose Quintana, but good things are expected from the second year lefty. Dylan Axelrod has taken the other starting spot, filling in for John Danks who starts out on the Disabled List, nursing his shoulder back from last year’s surgery.
As expected, one of the big strengths of the Sox is their bullpen. Jesse Crain, Nate Jones, Donnie Veal, Matt Thornton, Matt Lindstrom, and Addison Reed saw considerable action in week one and were quite effective. Sox fans are keeping their collective fingers crossed that the relief crew stays healthy for the long haul, and, if so, the season is going to be very interesting. When all is said and done, they passed their first exam of the season.
And now, the next test is about to begin as the White Sox embark on their first road trip
of 2013, which commences in Washington against the Nationals and then on to Cleveland for a weekend series against the rival Indians. Then it’s up to Toronto for four games against the Jays. It will be interesting to see what I can write about them at the conclusion of those series, which will, no doubt, be tough ones.
As always, we’ll be watching and listening and enjoying it all!
See you at the ballpark!