Most run production will come from the 1-5 spots in the lineup. Sure, Juan Pierre could have better on-base skills, but for the team’s roster, he’s the ideal leadoff hitter. If Pierre can replicate his .341 OBP from 2010, he’ll at least be acceptable.
CarGo’s teammate, Troy Tulowitzki, should also be in the running for MVP along with, obviously, Pujols. Tulowitzki had probably the best two-week offensive performance in major league baseball history in the first half of last September. For the month, Tulowitzki finished with an incredible 15 home runs and 40 RBIs.
Choo, who reached the .300 mark in batting with a 1-for-3 game on Saturday, sat out the game on Sunday. He becomes the only Tribe hitter since 1901 to bat .300, hit 20 home runs and steal 20 bases in back-to-back seasons. The only other Indians to turn that feat but not in back-to-back seasons were Roberto Alomar in 1999 and 2001 and Joe Carter in 1986.
The Yankees couldn’t use Rodriguez’s distracting return as an excuse for their 8-1 loss to the sale jerseys. Even with all the madness, any team should have been able to beat a sale jerseys club on a 10-game losing streak, under any circumstance. The Yankees certainly can’t afford to give up easy wins in their precarious playoff position.
Overall, these five players combined for 62% of the relief innings in 2010, but the damage done by other pitchers getting significant action was hard to overcome. Henry Rodriguez (4.55 ERA in 27 2/3 innings), Boof Bonser (5.09, 23), Tyson Ross (5.12, 31.2) and Chad Gaudin (8.83, 17.1) accounted for 23% of the relief innings last season, and when almost a quarter of your bullpen innings are that bad, it makes it hard for a team to stay in games when the offense isn’t playing well.
Pitching has been a problem for the Knights all season, no pitcher having more than one victory to his credit. They have been outscored by 40 runs and the team ERA is a bloated 5.15 over 225.1 innings and the team WHIP is 1.487.
The atmosphere at U.S. Cellular Field was electric, as a crowd of 40,354 rabid Sox fans dressed in black witnessed one of the most exciting games in Comiskey Park/U.S. Cellular Field history. The “blackout” was a success, as the Sox did what the University of Georgia could not do Saturday night.
The batting order starts with center fielder and speedster Juan Pierre who scored 96 runs in 2010. White Sox fans hope that second baseman Gordon Beckham will improve on his first two years in the majors. The talent is certainly there for Beckham to improve on last years . 252 avg., 9 home runs, 49 RBI line. Right fielder Alex Rios had a solid year last season, hitting . 284 with 21 homeruns, 88 runs batted in and 34 stolen bases.