White Sox

Let's Get Weird: White Sox make it seven straight after another rout of Red Sox

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Let's Get Weird: White Sox make it seven straight after another rout of Red Sox

BOSTON -- Things officially got weird Wednesday night: Jose Quintana received early run support.

The team’s outstanding offense showed up once again as the White Sox pounded the Boston Red Sox 9-2 in front of 37,104 at Fenway Park. Adam Eaton and Alexei Ramirez both homered as the White Sox scored six early runs for Quintana and cruised to their seventh straight victory. The White Sox have outscored opponents 54-19 during the streak and send Chris Sale to the mound Thursday night in search of their second straight four-game sweep.

“We’re trying to reverse the curse of Quintana,” Eaton said. “It’s nice to be able to get some runs for him early and let him settle in and pitch the way he can pitch. It’s fun to watch when gets in a groove and starts going with the lead.”

Eaton was the ringleader as he began the game by ripping a full-count slider from Rick Porcello over the right-field fence for a solo home run, his ninth. It’s the fourth time this season that Eaton, who went 3-for-6 with two RBIs, led off a game with a homer.

The White Sox then sliced further into their first-inning run deficit as Adam LaRoche singled off the Green Monster with two outs and Melky Cabrera, who had singled, scored as the relay throw got away from second baseman Brock Holt. The White Sox have outscored opponents 16-2 in the first inning in the past five games, trimming the season-deficit to 74-43.

[SHOP: Gear up, White Sox fans!]

An inning later, the White Sox scored three more times as Eaton and Cabrera each singled in a run. Cabrera’s single gave him seven consecutive multi-hit games, making him the first White Sox hitter to do that since Magglio Ordonez in 2003. He finished 3-for-6. Porcello also hit LaRoche with a pitch in thesecond inning to force in the team’s fifth run.

Ramirez, who had two hits, homered in the sixth to make it 6-0.

Carlos Sanchez -- who had three hits and extended his hit streak to 12 games -- had an RBI groundout in the seventh and Tyler Flowers (two hits) singled a runner in to make it 8-2 with Quintana in the game.

The eight runs marks roughly 20 percent of the total previously scored for Quintana this season (41). Quintana entered the game with a run-support average of 2.86, the second-lowest in the American League.

[MORE: White Sox could be buyers at trade deadline?]

“That’s perfect,” Quintana said. “Gives me a lot of confidence to go out to the mound and do my job and keep the game wide open. That’s good when you get a lot of runs in the first inning.

“The guys continued to keep scoring a lot of runs early in this series. It feels good for me when you get a lot of runs in the first inning and you go out a little bit more relaxed.”

Just like Jeff Samardzija on Tuesday, Quintana knew what to do with the excess breathing room. Even though he wasn’t his sharpest, Quintana didn’t allow a run until he was up six as Mike Napoli doubled in Xander Bogaerts in the fourth. From there, Quintana retired seven of eight hitters before Napoli got him again in the seventh with a solo homer to left.

Quintana allowed two earned runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings, walking one and striking out three. After his complete-game shutout on Saturday, Quintana earned consecutive victories for only the fifth time in his career.

Jose Abreu also singled in a run in the eighth for the White Sox, who finished with 17 hits. Every White Sox starter finished with a hit.

“It wasn’t his sharpest outing, but probably what he’s used to is we’re not scoring too many runs so for him it was a welcome break,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “We got some runs early and he grinded through it, and turned it over to the bullpen.

“Q did enough to get through it. He’s earned it, and deserves it.”

Would potential bargains like Mike Moustakas or Carlos Gonzalez make sense for White Sox?

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USA TODAY

Would potential bargains like Mike Moustakas or Carlos Gonzalez make sense for White Sox?

The 2017-18 baseball offseason continues to be, well, the 2017-18 baseball offseason, even with spring training games being played in Arizona and Florida.

A bunch of names remain on the free-agent market, including All-Star players who thought they would be in for big multi-year contracts. But as teams continue to deny the wishes of guys who expected to get big deals, the suggestion that those players might end up needing to take one-year offers if they want to play during the 2018 season is becoming a more common talking point.

So with potential bargains to be had for some pretty big-name players, do the White Sox jump into the waters and try to lock up a potential future piece on the cheap? Though they aren’t expected to contend this season, the White Sox have been mentioned in a pair of recent reports surrounding a pair of All-Star position players: Mike Moustakas and Carlos Gonzalez.

MLB.com's Jon Morosi wrote last week that the White Sox are a potential fit for Moustakas, who has sat and watched as former Kansas City Royals teammate Eric Hosmer received a huge contract from the San Diego Padres. Moustakas set a new Royals record last season with 38 home runs but has yet to find a team.

The White Sox, connected to Baltimore Orioles star Manny Machado earlier this offseason, seem to have a current big leaguer or highly ranked prospect locked into almost every position on the diamond for the foreseeable future, but third base isn't necessarily one of them. Jake Burger was last year’s top draft pick, though there’s speculation he could slide over to first base. The team still envisions him as a big league third baseman, for what it’s worth.

Moustakas is 29 and already has seven big league seasons under his belt, including a pair of All-Star appearances and a pair of trips to the World Series, including the Crowns’ championship back in 2015. His 38 homers and 85 RBIs in 2017 were both career highs. He slashed .272/.314/.521, the final of those three numbers the best mark of his career.

Moustakas has rarely hit for average or reached base at too high a clip, though those recent power numbers would be intriguing at a hitter-friendly park like Guaranteed Rate Field, where he has 10 career dingers, 26 career RBIs and a .249/.308/.456 career slash line as a visitor.

Certainly Moustakas would be a buzz-worthy addition, and if the White Sox could get him for a good value thanks to this slow-moving market, that adds incentive to bring him aboard. A short contract would have even more incentive for the rebuilding White Sox, who would have the option to either sign him to a long-term deal or deal him away in a deadline deal depending on his immediate production levels.

But for fans hoping the White Sox will spend big on a third baseman in one of the next two offseasons — Machado is a free agent next winter, and Colorado Rockies star Nolan Arenado is set to hit the market the winter after next — slotting in an outside addition at the hot corner now could impact those plans.

Gonzalez is a completely different story, a three-time All Star during his 10-year big league career who is just three seasons removed from a 40-homer campaign in 2015. The 32-year-old Gonzalez also has a trio of Gold Gloves to go along with his 215 career home runs. FanRag’s Jon Heyman listed the White Sox as a possible landing spot for CarGo this weekend.

But his walk year in Colorado was not a very good one by his standards. In 136 games for a Rockies team that ended up in the playoffs, he slashed .262/.339/.423, all those averages way down from his usual level of production. And his power numbers plummeted to 14 homers and 57 RBIs after he combined for 65 homers and 197 RBIs in 2015 and 2016.

The good news for the White Sox is that down year makes Gonzalez far more affordable. Should he command only a one-year contract, the White Sox could take a flier, stick him in the outfield — which still has an unresolved spot with few strong offensive options for center field — and trade him should he bounce back in a big way. Or, at 32, perhaps he’s a guy the White Sox could opt to keep around should he prove valuable and the rebuild continues to move along ahead of schedule.

Gonzalez seems the less risky move at this point, as Moustakas could still be looking for a multi-year contract. But the White Sox have plenty of financial flexibility and flexibility in their decision-making should they add either guy and he proves worthy of a midseason deal or a long-term look.

White Sox prospect Micker Adolfo sidelined with elbow injuries

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USA TODAY

White Sox prospect Micker Adolfo sidelined with elbow injuries

PHOENIX, Ariz. — One of the White Sox prized prospects will be on the shelf for a little while.

Outfielder Micker Adolfo has a sprained UCL in his right elbow and a strained flexor tendon that could require surgery. He could avoid surgery, though he could be sidelined for at least six weeks.

Though he hasn’t received the same high rankings and media attention as fellow outfield prospects Eloy Jimenez and Luis Robert, Adolfo is considered a part of the White Sox promising future. He’s said to have the best outfield arm in the White Sox system.

Adolfo had a breakout season in 2017, slashing .264/.331/.453 with 16 homers and 68 RBIs in 112 games with Class A Kannapolis.

Adolfo, along with Jimenez and Robert, has been generating buzz at White Sox camp in Glendale, with a crowd forming whenever the trio takes batting practice. Earlier this week, the three described their conversation dreaming about playing together in the same outfield for a contending White Sox team in the future.