White Sox

Why Avisail Garcia wants to remain with the White Sox 'forever'

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USA TODAY

Why Avisail Garcia wants to remain with the White Sox 'forever'

CLEVELAND — Similar to Jose Abreu’s earlier comments about his uncertain future, Avisail Garcia reiterated he wants to stay with the White Sox.

The 2017 All-Star — who didn’t appear in Sunday’s 3-1 loss to the Cleveland Indians — loves the direction in which the White Sox are headed.

Garcia is a fan of the culture instilled by manager Rick Renteria. He believes it has had an impact on his breakout season. And he’d love to be on the South Side when the White Sox eventually turn things around.

“Everybody wants to be a part of a winning team and I want to be a part of this team forever,” Garcia said. “I love this team. I love the coaches. I would like to stay here.”

Garcia’s breakout performance certainly has him in a much better position to stick around than he was in heading into this season. He might not have been afforded the opportunity to stay in 2017 had the White Sox chosen to compete.

But once the exodus began, the White Sox figured they’d give Garcia one more chance and it has paid off handsomely. Garcia, who lost approximately 18 pounds in the offseason and has maintained it, produced a career year. He hit .330/.380/.506 with 18 home runs and 80 RBIs in 561 plate appearances and played well in right field. He reduced his strikeout-rate to a career-low 19.8 percent, produced a ridiculously high .392 average on balls in play and finished the season worth 4.2 f-Wins Above Replacement. Optimistic as Renteria is, even he couldn’t see this kind of season from Garcia.

“I did not,” Renteria said. “I saw him improving.

“He came in very fit, and you also saw how committed he was to everything that was going on. He put together the first half of the season that was a little bit of a surprise. But not really because this was his fourth year in the big leagues. It takes a little time for people to settle in. And then our question was, is he going to be able to sustain this after the All-Star break? And he certainly has.”

“Is he always going to be a .330 hitter? I don’t think so. But he certainly has shown me that he has the ability and the approach that might potentially let him be able to do that if he stays consistent.”

Garcia thinks his season is a product of many things, including Renteria’s influence. Clearly the weight loss has helped and the way he’s felt this month has encouraged him to work as hard in the offseason. The experience and improved focus have also been keys for Garcia. Throw those aspects in with Renteria’s drive and Garcia put it all together. It’s the kind of manager Garcia thinks can help the White Sox turn their fortunes around as his own have.

“He pushes everybody to do their best every day,” Garcia said. “No matter what happens, we prepare to win the game the next day. He’s a great manager. I’m happy he’s here with us. I love Ricky. He’s that kind of guy that pushes you every day. He’s that kind of guy that even if you don’t hit, he’s always got your back. Big, big part.”

White Sox Talk Podcast: 'Searching for a safe space in Cubslandia'

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USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: 'Searching for a safe space in Cubslandia'

With the Cubs back in the NLCS, White Sox fans have had to deal with another post-season of Cubs this and Cubs that. How does one escape it? Diehard White Sox fan John Kass of the Chicago Tribune comes on the podcast to talk with Chuck Garfien about his recent column entitled "Searching for a safe space in Cubslandia." Kass talks about how he's dealing with the Cubs success and how White Sox fans can find this safe space. He tells the story about taking the White Sox World Series trophy into a Chicago Tribune board meeting in 2005 to rub it in the faces of the Trib's executives who were all Cubs fans.  

Kass talks about how he watches the Cubs in the playoffs, the Chicago media coverage of their playoff run and how Cubs fans will react if they don't repeat as champions. Garfien and Kass also discuss the White Sox rebuild, the Cubs losing in 2003 and why Kass will be calling Cubs Pre and Post host David Kaplan in the middle of the night if and when the Cubs are eliminated.  

White Sox mourn passing of former pitcher Daniel Webb

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USA TODAY

White Sox mourn passing of former pitcher Daniel Webb

Former White Sox pitcher Daniel Webb died at the age of 28 in an ATV accident on Saturday night, according to Humphreys County Sheriff Chris Davis.

Davis called it a “tragic accident, and we should rally around the family.”

Webb, a Paducah, Ky. native, was with the White Sox from 2013-16 and went 7-5 with a 4.50 ERA.

The White Sox released this statement:

Daniel left many friends within the Chicago White Sox organization, and we are all shocked and stunned by the news of last night's terrible accident. He was a terrific young man with a full life ahead of him. All thoughts and prayers go to his family and friends as they deal with today's tragic news.