GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Tuesday’s intrasquad provided a nice dose of positive reinforcement for Avisail Garcia moving forward.
The White Sox outfielder blasted a two-run home run to right in his team’s second intrasquad meeting in two days.
The White Sox open their exhibition season on Thursday. The hope is that Garcia gets comfortable with an altered stance over the next month so he doesn’t revert back to his old ways.
“For him to start off like that is good to see,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said.
[SHOP: Gear up, White Sox fans!]
A good season from Garcia could do wonders for a White Sox offense that struggled to produce in 2015. Ventura said he can see a slight difference in Garcia’s stance.
“The mechanics of it are a little different,” Ventura said. “You can see him sitting down a little. I think his bat is a little flatter as far as starting going through the zone, which is going to help him. It’s going to help him maintain that barrel through the zone a little longer. Whether he hits it as much he’s going to be able to foul stuff off, stay alive a little more and give himself more chances.”
Garcia worked out for three days in January with hitting coach Todd Steverson and first baseman Jose Abreu in Miami. He’s felt good about the changes they put in place ever since.
“I have confidence in what I'm doing so it's very important,” Garcia said. “Just have to keep working, trying to repeat every at-bat, trying to be consistent. That's what I'm looking for.”
It might be a long shot for the White Sox to sign free agent Manny Machado, but here on the White Sox Talk Podcast, we like dark horses. Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey and Vinnie Duber discuss what it would take to bring Machado to the South Side. Plus, is he "the" guy the White Sox are targeting this offseason? Will the Rockies listen to trade offers for Nolan Arenado a year before he reaches free agency? Plus, Chuck talks about a cost-controlled, All-Star on a rebuilding team that could be an answer at third base.
Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:
Mark Buehrle. Jon Garland. Freddy García. José Contreras.
The 2005 White Sox had four consecutive complete games to finish off the 2005 ALCS — Contreras took his turn in Game 5 against the Angels 13 years ago Tuesday. How special was that run of starting pitching to finish that series? Consider the following six statements:
— No team has had more than two complete games in a single postseason, let alone a postseason series, since.
— There has been a grand total of four complete games in 188 postseason games (through Monday) since the beginning of 2016.
— Those 2005 White Sox remain the only team with four complete games in a single LCS (which went to a best-of-seven format in 1985).
— They are the only team since the 1968 Tigers (in the World Series) with at least four complete games in any postseason series.
— They are the only team since the 1956 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete games in a series. (The Yankees had five in a row: Games 3 through 7.)
— They are the only team since the 1928 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete-game wins in a series (Games 1 through 4).
Take a moment to look back and appreciate what Don Cooper’s troops were able to accomplish in that series. The way the game is played nowadays, we will never see it again.