Sox Insider

Eaton is Sox unlikely home run leader with go-ahead shot

Sox Insider

The White Sox are only 10 games into their 2021 schedule.

But even this early in the season, the team's home run leader is a surprising one.

Adam Eaton, known for his more grindy approach to the game, hit his third long ball of the season Monday night against the Cleveland Indians, the latest clutch blast off his bat turning a 2-0 deficit into a 3-2 lead for the South Siders.

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Eaton was a somewhat divisive addition during the offseason, both because of the lingering memories of the dysfunctional 2016 team he was a part of and because there were far bigger names available on the free agent market.

But he's proven a valuable addition so far as the White Sox offense has been hit or miss through the first handful of regular season games, leaving a lot of runners on base and coming up empty with runners in scoring position.

Eaton's last two hits have been clutch deliveries with runners on base. He homered as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning Sunday, flipping a 2-1 lead for the Kansas City Royals into a 3-2 advantage for the White Sox. Then came Monday night's dinger, another go-ahead trip around the bases.

Eaton's power display in the early going is already a vast improvement in power production from last season, when regular right fielder Nomar Mazara managed just one home run after averaging 20 of them in each of his first four major league seasons with the Texas Rangers.

 

Eaton's career high in home runs in 15, accomplished in 2019 when he was a part of the Washington Nationals squad that won the World Series. He hit 14 apiece in 2015 and 2016 with the White Sox.

He's on pace for 48 of them in 2021.

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