José Abreu delivered the best single image of the White Sox season Tuesday night.
It might have just been the team's leader goofing around. But White Sox fans latched on to Abreu's screaming base-running display in the first inning against the Minnesota Twins, and indeed, it produced one of the best visuals of a season to this point chock full of big moments.
Abreu was on first base when Eloy Jiménez doubled against Twins pitcher Michael Pineda. Abreu, not exactly known for his blistering speed, turned on the jets and scored from first base. But he decided to have a little fun with it, opening his mouth wide and yelling as he rounded third base and headed for home.
"I just enjoy the game. We're having fun as a team, and that's important," Abreu said Wednesday through team interpreter Billy Russo. "That's what makes me do things like last night.
"You have to try to live your life in peace. That's what I'm trying to do, and I think that's one of the reasons why I've been able to enjoy this moment, this success that we're having right now as a team without having anything else holding me back. It is important. I enjoy this moment, I enjoy every day of being here, and I'm really happy with this team and how things are going for us."
The White Sox are indeed matching their success on the field and in the standings with the amount of fun they're having on the field and in the dugout. Tim Anderson has brought his usual swagger, Jiménez has brought his usual humor, and just about everyone has figured out a way to laugh every time Edwin Encarnación does anything on the field.
Abreu's been a bit of a ringleader, frequently hopping up to the top step to cheerlead for whoever just came up with a big hit or hurl jokes at whoever just barely made it into second base.
And as the fun and the jokes keep flying with this White Sox team, Abreu decided to lay one more in there, laughing as he said it.
"The only thing that I would like to say is for Eloy: Next time, I would like for him to hit more baseballs in the stands," he said, "that way I don't have to run as fast as I did yesterday."