CLEVELAND -- The White Sox have begun to right the ship and Adam Eaton wants to follow his team’s lead.
Though his production doesn’t show it, the White Sox leadoff man said he has had a good feel at the plate for all but Sunday’s game. So far that has translated into two hits in 25 at-bats with no walks in six games.
But much like the White Sox have begun to turn things around, Eaton, who signed a five-year, $23.5-million contract extension last month, is confident he’ll get going soon, too.
“Baseball is a funny game,” Eaton said. “For some reason it doesn’t always reward good at-bats and good pitching. The last two games were great, it gave us the confidence it was there and we were gelling and coming together and the city of Chicago is not burning to the ground. The Titanic is now upright. We’ll be all right.”
Eaton admits part of his problem is he probably has been too aggressive at the plate in the early going.
Through six games, Eaton has seen an average of 3.36 pitches per plate appearance, down from 3.89 a season ago. White Sox manager Robin Ventura said it’s in Eaton’s personality to try harder when things haven’t gone well, that the center fielder enjoys his role as a catalyst and wants to help the club become a winner.
“He’s probably pressing,” Ventura said. “He’s a guy, there’s a certain amount of going too hard, and he has some of that, over-swinging and things like that. Part of it is personality. You know he’s going to eventually come out of it, and you know the talent that is there and how good he is. If we can win games and he’s not in the middle of it, eventually he’s going to be in the middle of us winning games too.”
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The White Sox as a whole have been overly aggressive, perhaps as a side effect of losing their first four games. Through the season’s first week, White Sox hitters have drawn six walks.
But Eaton said the group began to click during its four-run rally on Saturday and has gained confidence. He hasn’t lost confidence and isn’t panicked, but Eaton would like to get going soon.
“I’m not all upset with my at-bats but this game is about production and getting hits and it’s not about having good at-bats,” Eaton said. “I want to get hits, get on base, I haven’t walked yet. There’s a lot of bad things at the plate right now. …
“I just need to pick up on my end.”