The White Sox had themselves quite the week, taking two of three from the defending American League Champion Cleveland Indians in Cleveland, followed by their second consecutive inter-divisional road series victory against the Minnesota Twins this weekend, to push their record to 6-5 on the season.
Here are the White Sox players trending in both direction this past week, in this week’s edition of “Three Up, Three Down” on The Loop Sports.
- Avisail Garcia (OF): For the second consecutive week, the White Sox were led offensively by the 25-year old right-fielder, Avisail Garcia. Garcia racked up 11 hits in 24 at-bats this past week, including a double, a home run, and five RBI for the White Sox. In one of the better performances we have ever seen out of Garcia, he went 4-5 with three singles, and a game-winning two-run home run in the top of the tenth inning on Sunday afternoon in Minnesota. Garcia is now sitting pretty with a .465/.511/.674/1.185 hitting line through his first 11 games of the season, and leads the league in batting average entering play today.
- James Shields (RHP): If you would have told me that I would have been including James Shields in the Three Up portion of this feature before this week, I would have had a hard time taking you seriously. Alas, here we are, with Shields racking up two one-run outings this past week, and making the list. Shields tossed 11.1 innings over the course of those two starts, allowing only a run in each outing, but still taking a pair of no-decisions. Seven hits, five walks, and 11 strikeouts to his credit this past week, and an opposing batting average of just .171 has James Shields looking like a pitcher that we haven’t seen since his acquisition last summer, and due in large part to a new “junk baller” approach to his game, that has featured a mix of his knuckle-curve, and what some are referring to as an eephus pitch, as well as his fastball and changeup.
- David Robertson (RHP): David Robertson has been nothing short of lights-out this week, and this season thus far for that matter. Appearing in four of the White Sox six games this past week, Robertson has tossed four scoreless innings, allowing only one base-hit, and striking out eight hitters while converting on all three save opportunities. Robertson looks to be locked-in, and that’s good news for the White Sox, who are more than likely going to being getting phone calls from teams with back-end bullpen issues like the Washington Nationals in the near future.
- Jacob May (OF): For the second consecutive week, Jacob May struggled mightily, and again failed to notch a single hit. Not only was May 0-9 on the week, he is now 0-21 on the season, and still looking very over-matched at the plate. The defense has been less than expected as well, and if you’re going to carry an .087 OBP as a center-fielder, you’d better be flashing some damn good leather on the flip side of things. I really hope that May can snap out of this offensive slumber, and begin to get comfortable before he loses the job to Leury Garcia on a full-time basis.
- Jose Abreu (1B): Abreu said that avoiding a slow start in April again this season was a focus of his heading into the spring, but has failed to live up to that point of emphasis thus far. After collecting only a pair of base-hits in 23 at-bats over the course of the last six games, Abreu is hitting a sparse .186 on the season. Abreu has also looked pretty bad at first base thus far, and I know he was never known to be a stud with the glove, but he has looked particularly bad this month. At this rate, Yoan Moncada will get his wish of playing with Abreu, because no one will offer the White Sox anything worth moving him.
- Cody Asche (DH): Remember last season how happy we were when the White Sox decided to just dump guys that were really bad like Jimmy Rollins, and John Danks? Can we please see another one of those? Cody Asche is just really bad. Not only is he dead-weight in the lineup, he’s taking valuable at-bats from Matt Davidson, who is actually hitting the cover off of the ball so far! Asche is 2-25 on the season… please, end this experiment, like today preferably.