White Sox

Tim Anderson wants to be the White Sox shortstop of the future

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USA TODAY

Tim Anderson wants to be the White Sox shortstop of the future

If you follow Sabermetrics, look up the leaders among American League shortstops in WAR(Wins Above Replacement). There in the Top Ten you will find the following names:

5. Didi Gregorius      2.5
6. Manny Machado   2.5
7. Tim Anderson       2.1
8. Xander Bogaerts  2.0

Surprised to see the guy ranked No. 7?

At the end of last year, it looked like this:

11. Jose Iglesias      1.4
12. Tim Beckham     1.3
13. Marcus Semien  1.1
14. Chad Pinder       1.0
15. Tim Anderson     0.9

At a time when the White Sox are feeling the pain of their rebuild, watching how Tim Anderson has developed this year should provide you some relief about the future.

Is he finished product?  No
Does he make a lot of errors and strikeout too much? Yes and yes.

But speaking with him before Friday’s game against the Royals, Anderson sounded like a player who is walking around with a baseball compass.   He knows exactly where he’s at and what he needs to do to arrive at his hopeful destination: greatness.

“What I’m doing this year is a small sample of what’s going to come,” Anderson said.  “I’ve got a lot of work to do. I’ve got to continue to work and get better on offense and defense.  I feel like that’s working for me. I take my work seriously and I know I’ve got to get better, and I feel like I am getting better.”

What does Anderson want to improve on?

“Everything.  Everything. I want to be great, so I’ve got to improve on everything, offense and defense.”

I bring up his 23 walks which are already 10 more than his previous career-high.

Anderson claps his hands.

“I’m proud about that. I didn’t really walk much (last year).  I got in the box and was just ready to go. But now I’m being patient and I’m learning.”

What about his 13 errors which are the second most among shortstops in the American League?  Anderson didn’t hide. 

“We got to get those down,” Anderson said.  “I’m in a good position where I am now compared to where I was last year, but I’ve got a lot of work to do. Obviously the errors are showing that it tells me I got to keep working.  I’m going to clean it up.”

At a time when stolen bases are becoming extinct, Anderson’s 21 thefts are second most in the American League.  He’s projected to finish with 37. Could he hit 40?

“You don’t want to put a number out there and not reach it. For the most part I’m going out there and seeing how many I can get,”  Anderson said. “I feel like “I’ve been doing a great job taking the information they’re giving me and using it in the game. That’s kind of why I’m safe most of the time.”

When the White Sox are ready to win,  will Anderson be their shortstop? The chances of them signing Manny Machado in the off-season are extremely slim. And, you probably don’t want Machado playing shortstop anyway. Check out his defensive metrics. It’s ugly.  Really ugly.

DWAR
95. Xander Bogaerts     -0.7
96. Jody Mercer            -0.9
97.  Alcides Escobar     -1.0
Last. Manny Machado  -1.4

Anderson wants to be the White Sox shortstop of the future and is looking more and more like it. He’s also such a team player, he’d probably play the outfield if the White Sox ever asked him.  He even has a pretty good sense or humor about it.

The White Sox rebuild might have started last season, but the team has been losing ever since he got called up in 2016.  I asked him if the losses are weighing on him. 

“We’re going through a tough stretch right now.  We’re in a rebuild. That’s what everyone’s saying, but you got to look at the future. We’ve got a chance to do something special.  That’s what keeps me going. I’m excited about that. You can only control what you can control,” Anderson said. “Right now we’re in a stretch where we haven’t been winning.  But overall, the clubhouse has been great through the tough times that we’ve been going through and we’ve got some great pieces in the minor leagues that’s going to be up here soon and turn those L’s into W’s.”

Anderson sees the big picture and if the White Sox win a World Series, he wants to be in that championship photo.

“I’m here until the end.  The plan is to bring a championship here and that’s what I’m here for.”

Paul Konerko misses out on 2020 Hall of Fame, falls off ballot after receiving 2.5% of vote

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USA Today

Paul Konerko misses out on 2020 Hall of Fame, falls off ballot after receiving 2.5% of vote

Former White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko will not be elected to the baseball Hall of Fame in 2020. Konerko received 2.5% of the vote, less than the 5% needed to remain on the ballot.

Konerko came to Chicago in 1998 and played his first season with the Sox in 1999, hitting .294 with 24 home runs and 81 RBIs. The following season, the White Sox made the playoffs for the first time since 1993. Konerko was with the team during their triumphant 2005 World Series win, hitting the first grand slam in White Sox World Series history and giving the Sox the lead 6-4 in Game 2 against the Astros.

Confused and frustrated? You’re not alone. Here's how the multi-step voting process works. Players become eligible to enter the Hall of Fame ballot five years after they’ve retired, if they’ve played a minimum of 10 seasons. From there, the Baseball Writers’ Association of America screening committee votes to determine which players make the ballot. Each voter can vote for 10 players. Players need to achieve at least 5% of the vote to be included on the next year’s ballot. If a player makes the ballot, they then need to achieve 75% of all ballots cast to be officially inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Regardless of the voting, Konerko will always be a White Sox legend.

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO TO DELIVER EXTENSIVE, LIVE, MULTI-PLATFORM “SOXFEST 2020” COVERAGE BEGINNING THIS THURSDAY, JANUARY 23

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USA Today

NBC SPORTS CHICAGO TO DELIVER EXTENSIVE, LIVE, MULTI-PLATFORM “SOXFEST 2020” COVERAGE BEGINNING THIS THURSDAY, JANUARY 23

Chicago, IL (January 21, 2020) – NBC Sports Chicago - THE NEW EXCLUSIVE HOME of the CHICAGO WHITE SOX - is ready to start up the highly-anticipated 2020 MLB season in a big way with expanded multi-platform coverage of “SoxFest 2020,” which will be held this weekend (January 24-25) at the McCormick Place Convention Center in downtown Chicago.  NBC Sports Chicago will be rolling out its most robust “SoxFest” coverage to date featuring multiple, live on-site shows, massive digital content, entertaining social media offerings, “Authentic Fan” booth giveaways/special appearances, and so much more.  Please note NBC Sports Chicago’s “SoxFest 2020” content coverage details below:

 

THURSDAY, JANUARY 23 --

  • 6:00 PM CT – “SportsTalk Live” special edition from SoxFest - Prior to the official start of “SoxFest 2020,” fans can look forward to a special edition of SportsTalk Live presented by The Chevy Silverado live from McCormick Place.  Host David Kaplan (@thekapman) will be joined by special guests, White Sox manager Ricky Renteria and NBC Sports Chicago White Sox game analyst Steve Stone (@stevestone), along with a panel of White Sox experts to discuss the upcoming weekend’s festivities and preview what lies ahead for the White Sox in 2020. (NOTES: This program will also stream live on NBCSportsChicago.com/WatchLive)

 

FRIDAY, JANUARY 24 --

  • 3:00 PM CT – “SoxFest 2020” Opening Ceremonies - Veteran NBC Sports Chicago White Sox expert/multi-platform host Chuck Garfien (@ChuckGarfien) will host network’s always-entertaining “SoxFest” Opening Ceremonies coverage “Live from the Black Carpet” featuring the official weekend kick-off introductions (and interviews) with White Sox players, coaches, front offices execs, broadcasters and legendary White Sox alumni.  NBC Sports Chicago’s “SoxFest 2020” Opening Ceremonies coverage will also be co-hosted by White Sox Pre/Postgame Live & Baseball Night in Chicago host Leila Rahimi (@leilarahimi) and NBC Sports Chicago multi-platform White Sox reporter Vinnie Duber (@VinnieDuber) who will provide additional commentary and conduct interviews throughout the ceremonies. (NOTES: This program will also stream live on NBCSportsChicago.com/WatchLive and via the “MyTeams by NBC Sports” app; fans located anywhere in the U.S. can download MyTeams for free on iOS and Android devices in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store…in addition, the Opening Ceremonies will re-air at 6:30 PM on NBC Sports Chicago+)

 

  • 6:00 PM CT – “SportsTalk Live” special edition from SoxFest - NBC Sports Chicago’s live, on-site coverage from “SoxFest 2020” continues with an additional remote edition of SportsTalk Live presented by The Chevy Silverado as host David Kaplan welcomes White Sox reliever Aaron Bummer and new acquisition/right fielder Nomar Mazara..  In addition, “Kap” will be joined by White Sox players and a panel of Sox experts to discuss all the off-season moves and acquisitions, the shaping of this season’s roster, including the starting line-up and pitching rotation, along with analysis on why 2020 may very well be the year the White Sox make their triumphant return to postseason action. (NOTE: This program will also stream live on NBCSportsChicago.com/WatchLive and via the “MyTeams by NBC Sports” app)

 

  • 7:00 PM CT – “SoxFest @ Night” (airing on NBC Sports Chicago+) - Fans are in for a special primetime treat Friday night as NBC Sports Chicago will deliver its exclusive presentation of SoxFest @ Night, a one-hour talk show hosted by Chuck Garfien and NBC Sports Chicago White Sox play-by-play announcer Jason Benetti (@jasonbenetti), which will take place LIVE in front of a die-hard White Sox fan convention audience on “SoxFest’s” primary stage.  Featured White Sox guests on SoxFest @ Night will include Rick Hahn (SVP/GM), Rick Renteria (Manager), Tim Anderson (SS), Jose Abreu (1B), Yoan Moncada (3B), Luis Robert (CF), Dallas Keuchel (SP), Lucas Giolito (SP), Yasmani Grandal (C) and Eloy Jimenez (LF).  (NOTE: This program will also stream live on NBCSportsChicago.com/WatchLive and via the “MyTeams by NBC Sports” app)

 

THROUGHOUT THE WEEKEND…

 

NBCSportsChicago.com, “MyTeams by NBC Sports” app and Social Media

  • Fans can look forward to even more comprehensive “SoxFest 2020” coverage all weekend long on NBCSportsChicago.com (NBCSportsChicago.com/WhiteSox) and the MyTeams by NBC Sports app featuring additional players/coaches/front office executive interviews, feature stories, fan reaction, photos, videos and much more provided by Garfien, Rahimi, Duber, along the NBC Sports Chicago team of behind-the-scenes White Sox experts (@NBCSWhiteSox). 

 

  • From a social media standpoint, NBC Sports Chicago will also deliver a number of additional on-site Facebook Live (Facebook.com/NBCSChicago) interviews and special segments throughout the weekend, along with numerous SoxFest “Sights & Sounds” highlights via ‘NBCSChicago’ on Instagram and Instagram Stories. 

 

“White Sox Talk” Podcasts

  • White Sox fans can look forward to brand new “White Sox Talk” Podcasts presented by Wintrust featuring the hottest SoxFest topics and special guest interviews. The “White Sox Talk” podcast is hosted by NBC Sports Chicago White Sox experts Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey (@RyanMcGuffey), Chris Kamka (@ckamka) and Vinnie Duber.  Fans can download all of NBC Sports Chicago’s podcasts at NBCSportsChicago.com/podcasts and simply subscribe to them via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or Stitcher.  The podcasts can be played on any mobile device, laptop, or desktop computer.
  • In addition, fans attending “SoxFest 2020” this weekend can also stop by the convention’s designated museum area on Saturday afternoon to watch a pair of “White Sox Talk” podcast tapings featuring Garfien, McGuffey and Duber interviewing starting pitchers Dylan Cease (12 NOON) and Michael Kopech (2:00 PM). 

 

“Authentic Fan” booth at SoxFest

  • NBC Sports Chicago’s “Authentic Fan” booth will feature a number of special White Sox-themed giveaways including “Authentic Fan” bobbleheads, mittens, baseball caps and much more (while supplies last).  Plus, fans can are urged to utilize the social media hashtag #AuthenticFan throughout the weekend as several lucky fans will be “authentically surprised” with special White Sox giveaways and experiences. NBC Sports Chicago’s dedicated White Sox Twitter handle (@NBCSWhiteSox) will also provide up-to-the-minute info on NBC Sports Chicago “Authentic Fan” booth activities, which will include specific timing details on White Sox player and broadcaster appearances throughout the weekend.