It’s a good thing Torontonians are likely preoccupied with the post-season efforts of the Toronto Raptors at the moment. If they weren’t, then they might see something that is starting to become clear: the Blue Jays aren’t that good. The Chicago White Sox just completed a sweep of the Toronto Blue Jays in action that came from downtown Toronto. What is also starting to become clear is the fact that the Chicago White Sox are a better team than most gave them credit for heading into the 2016 season.
The White Sox are now 16-6 on the year for an excellent .727 winning percentage as the end of April looms. There’s ‘only’ 140 games left in the season, but I do get the feeling that we are watching the emergence of a special team. It’s not just Chicago’s record, but who they have beaten and sometimes where they have won.
Before beating Toronto at the Rogers Centre in three straight, previously Chicago swept the Texas Rangers, the team many have winning the AL West this season. Chicago’s sweep of Minnesota was no big deal, but at least the Chi Sox did it on the road earlier this month. Furthermore, the White Sox took 3 of 4 away from Oakland early in April, the Athletics otherwise a solid team.
Of course, the city of Chicago had been the focus for World Series chatter with the pre-season pundits. However, that had to do with the Chicago Cubs, losers in the NLCS last season. The Cubs, at 15-5, are the only team in the majors with a better winning percentage than the White Sox right now.
One very promising development with the White Sox has been the recent play of DH Avisail Garcia. Prior to the Toronto series, there was some talk of sending him down to the minors as he had an egregious OPS of about .450. However with hits in every game against Toronto, Garcia’s OPS is up to .633, still below par for someone who only focuses on hitting. However, you have to think Robin Ventura will be giving him some time to continue to find his groove.
Next up for the White Sox are the Baltimore Orioles for a four-game series that will come from Baltimore. It’s hard to picture Chicago sweeping the O’s, a .600 overall team who have only lost one home game so far. However, Chicago is 10-3 on the road, so the weekend series looks like one to be enjoyed. If the White Sox get a 2-2 split, then you have to think they will walk away feeling good.
With starters Mat Latos and Chris Sale a combined 9-0 so far this season, I think Chicago are poised for two wins at least as they will both see starts in the four-game series. Latos, who might just have a comeback season this year, is scheduled for Saturday while Sale is scheduled for Sunday. Both pitchers have been dynamite thus far in the 2016 regular season.