White Sox

An encouraging sign for the White Sox offense

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USA TODAY

An encouraging sign for the White Sox offense

The White Sox are playing good baseball lately, with a 15-13 record over their last 28 games. What stands out most is their recent run of better starting pitching – they have had five quality starts over their last seven games (opposed to nine over the first 32 games this season). But tucked away on the stats page is something that’s really promising. The Sox are hitting the ball hard this season; they currently rank second in MLB in hard-hit percentage, according to Statcast data. By definition, a hard hit ball is a batted ball with exit velocity of at least 95 MPH.

Hard Hit percentage
MLB leaders this season (according to Statcast)

Rays 42 percent
White Sox 41.3 percent
Tigers 41.1 percent
Twins 41.1 percent
Yankees 40.7 percent
Red Sox 39.9 percent

Among individual players on the White Sox, José Abreu leads the way with 57 percent, which is fifth out of 364 players in MLB with at least 25 batted ball events this season. Aaron Judge is No. 1 with 66.7 percent, though he has missed most of the season with an oblique strain and has only 48 batted ball events to Abreu’s 114. If you set the cutoff at minimum 100 batted ball events, Abreu’s 57 percent ranks first out of 115 players.

Hard Hit percentage
MLB individual leaders this season (min. 100 batted ball events), according to Statcast

José Abreu 57 percent
Josh Bell 55.7 percent
Christian Yelich 54.4 percent
George Springer 53.3 percent
Javier Báez 53.1 percent
Trevor Story  52.9 percent
Cody Bellinger 52.8 percent

Not far behind Abreu are Yonder Alonso (50 percent), James McCann (46.3 percent) and Yoán Moncada (45.5 percent). To anyone who has watched the 2019 White Sox regularly, seeing those names on a hard-hit rate leaderboard shouldn’t be much of a surprise, perhaps with the exception of Alonso, who has yet to find his rhythm this season. But hitting the ball hard usually brings success, so it may be a matter of time before Alonso puts it all together. He has certainly showed a good eye at the plate early on.

With continued success from the starting moundsmen, if the White Sox can continue their trend of hard hitting, we might see a nice improvement on their win total from last season.

SportsTalk Live Podcast: White Sox get a big come-from-behind win thanks to José Abreu

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: White Sox get a big come-from-behind win thanks to José Abreu

David Haugh, Jim Litke and Luke Stuckmeyer join David Kaplan on the panel.

0:00- The White Sox get a big come-from-behind win thanks to José Abreu. With signs of light at the end of rebuilding tunnel, should the Sox go for wins now or continue to focus on the future? The panel debates.

15:00- Will Perdue joins the panel to preview NBA free agency and who the Bulls should target when it all begins Sunday.

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Sports Talk Live Podcast

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White Sox Talk Podcast: Craziest game of the season? This was it

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USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: Craziest game of the season? This was it

It was a game that had just about everything: five runs off Chris Sale, Jon Jay scoring from second on an infield single, a game-winning home run by Jose Abreu in the ninth, and so many other crazy things in between.

Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey, Chris Kamka and Vinnie Duber break it all down. Abreu's heroics and how Scott Podsednik predicted it (2:00), the wizardry of these White Sox and their record (6:10), Yoan Moncada takes himself out of the game after getting hit on the knee by a Chris Sale pitch (10:30), Jon Jay's heads-up dash for home (15:10), Tim Anderson's ankle injury (21:20), what roster changes are coming (24:00) and more.

Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below:

White Sox Talk Podcast

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