Tag Archives: Tim Anderson

Anderson Ready for 2018

To say that 2017 was a tumultuous season for White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson would be a bit of an understatement. After starting his career under much trepidation as to whether or not the late-bloomer would stick at shortstop, he came into 2017 with something to prove—that all of that trepidation was simply unwarranted.

But, in an unexpected turn of events, the then 23 year-old Anderson suffered the tragic loss of his best friend, Brandon Moss. who was gunned down in early May in his hometown of Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

“He was very close to me. More so, a brother. We’re talking seven years of a great relationship. He’s my baby’s God-Dad. I was his a daughter’s God-Dad. It was that type of bond.” Anderson told the media in May.

We often lose sight of the fact that baseball is just a game and, for people such as Anderson, a job. Off-the-field incidents are carried into the fabric of everyday life which, for Anderson, was during the start of arguably the most important year of his young, budding career.

Anderson’s numbers suffered as a result of the tragedy. During the first half of the season, Anderson hit a paltry .240/.263/.369 and committed a record 28 errors on the season. The second-highest fielding error total for the White Sox belonged to Avisail Garcia, who committed only 9 errors in 2017.

Anderson eventually sought help through the work of counselling and the mentorship of the White Sox organization and, by the second half of the season, the team began to see a break-out. Anderson was batting a much healthier .276/.292/.440 with 10 stolen bases and 8 home runs in the second half, and he was clearly on the road to recovery. He was out to prove that the Anderson that showed flashes brilliance during the 2016 season was not far in his rearview mirror.

“They’ve been there for me since that happened, it’s just a great group of guys and an awesome coaching staff and front office, you know they supported me,” Anderson said of the White Sox organization. “They know I’ve been through a lot, it’s just great to have them in my corner and be there for me.”

If the end of the season wasn’t enough to convince you that Anderson was on the path to getting back to his everyday self, seeing the 24 year-old at SoxFest this past weekend certainly reaffirmed any doubts one might have. Rejuvenated, showing off his signature infectious smile, and voicing his enthusiasm for the coming season, Anderson gave off the vibes of a brand new person; strengthened by the trials he’d faced so early in his major league career.

“It’s just, I’m excited about the season, you know,” Anderson said, gazing into the distance as though he was already envisioning the warm breezy nights that are soon to be on deck at Guaranteed Rate Field. “I’m going to go and do what I’m supposed to do and just the ultimate goal is to have fun. I wasn’t having fun last year, it was tough. It flushed me, but you know, I’m back and I feel great.”

“Tim Anderson’s not a finished product, “ General Manager Rick Hahn said during media sessions on Friday afternoon. “Carlos Rodon is not a finished product, despite being in the big leagues for a couple years. It’s part of the reason Ricky [Renteria] and the coaching staff is perfectly suited for this process. They’re all teachers, they all have roots in player development.

“I already knew that,” Anderson said of Hahn’s remark, accompanied by a confident smirk. “I know that the sky’s the limit for me, man. I do everything the right way and treat people the right way so it’s just a matter of time. Just keep working, just keep going. Things will happen, it’s going to be a great season, we got a great group of guys and we’re ready.”

Anderson’s struggles last season were certainly not vain. He understands that in a quickly changing landscape for this team that had been ushering in new young players nearly every week last season, with more to arrive this season, he will be taking on the role of a leader and mentor in 2018. And he’s welcoming that new and exciting challenge with open arms.

“That’s something I’ve definitely thought about,” Anderson said of becoming a clubhouse leader. “You know it’s a new year, I feel great. Man, it’s gonna be great.” Anderson said, as though he was realizing the depths of his excitement right before our eyes. “I’m doing more things, I’m opening up, talking more, so it’s gonna be great to see you know how this year goes with me being vocal and being that leader. I’m excited about it and I’m ready to lead these guys.”

Those comments are a far cry from the lowlights baseball saw from Anderson in 2017. Anderson’s story of success in 2018 will stretch far beyond the numbers and flashy plays on the diamond. His ability to persevere in the face of adversity and tragedy will help him become an example not just to his teammates, present and future, but to many onlookers and fans of the White Sox’s cornerstone “grinder” culture. The moto is that “Ricky’s boys never quit”, and Anderson has quickly become the poster child of that sentiment.

A Home for Yolmer

While folks have been making the rounds dreaming up scenarios that ship off Jose Abreu or Avisail Garcia this Winter for a return of riches, they’ve been forgetting about the rest of the Chicago White Sox and what other interests might be on the roster.

Though it’s been most popularly speculated that Abreu and Garcia would draw interest from teams and are most likely to be moved to amass prospects, smaller deals may come into play for the White Sox, too. There are always teams on the lookout for a simple upgrade—such as a super-utility type player or left-handed bench bat—and could be interested in Yolmer Sanchez. That’s right, clubhouse goofball and Sanchez, recent discovered as a steady,everyday ballplayer could be garnering interest from perspective trade suitors.

Though GM Rick Hahn seems to have made most Sox fans accustomed to the blockbuster style deal that happens in a hurry, not all his dealings will be as boisterous as in the past.

Sanchez is an interesting case this offseason. After three years as a plug-and-play option on the White Sox, he finally saw 141 games of steady playing time in 2017. And the progress he made was quite transformative.

Perhaps, for Sanchez, seeing more time at the plate has helped his offense blossom. Take a look at Sanchez’s stats for the three years he spent in the majors getting just 687 plate appearances under his belt, as compared to 2017, when he saw 534 trips to the plate in just that season alone:

2014-2016 .224 .261 .330 21.5 3.9
2017 .267 .319 .413 20.8 6.6

Though it may not appear that Sanchez has done much to improve his strikeout rate, he did drop it 5 percentage points from 2016’s 25.8 percent.

What really seemed to flourish with extra time in the batter box was Sanchez’s plate discipline. Of course, though Sanchez still had a swinging strike rate of 11 percent in 2017, his walk rate nearly doubled in 2017, which certainly correlates with the increase in on-base percentage. Sanchez also hit for more power than you’d expect a 5’11” utility bat to hit for, blasting a career high 12 home runs into the seats last year. His previous career high was five home runs in 2015.

On the defensive side, Sanchez proved his glove plays sufficiently at multiple positions on the diamond, and not only overcame a career of negative WAR totals, but actually became a 2.1 WAR player according to FanGraphs.

Third base has been a question mark for the White Sox for sometime now. With Matt Davidson showing off his raw power last season—but not much else—and third baseman of the future Jake Burger still a few years away. If talks with Manny Machado die down, Sanchez may be best kept aboard as the White Sox’s starting third baseman in 2018. Perhaps a starting role, or at least most of a shared role, could help Sanchez solidify his value as a strong defensive utility infielder that comes with a bat that truly has some pop.

Another option would be for the White Sox to begin the season with Sanchez at third base and perhaps sprinkled elsewhere, then trade him at the trade deadline when a team needs a little more push or to fill a need left by injury.

With Tyler Saladino looking to be back in the fold as long as health permits in 2018 and Tim Anderson not moving over anytime soon, Sanchez and Saladino could create a crowded infield dynamic, though one of them would be easily relegated to a bench type role. However during the season impromptu opportunities often arise and, for the White Sox, having a valuable piece in Sanchez simply to aid in making a larger deal more palatable for another team is an important asset to possess during a rebuild.

Perhaps Sanchez can best serve the White Sox as their everyday third baseman and switch hitter in 2018, but that need can change in an instant—and if he does, the White Sox will be ready to deal.

With An Eye Toward the Future

As the season winds down for the White Sox, a few of the younger bats have been heating up. Tim Anderson, Yoan Moncada, and Yolmer Sanchez have all been on a run in the final weeks of the 2017 season. They’ve been the kind of runs that, coupled with the continued stellar production from Avi Garcia and Jose Abreu, make you wonder about just how quickly the White Sox rebuild can take shape.

Anderson’s first four months were tough, to say the least. What he had to deal with off the field was tragic and well-documented. In August, once he was able to start sleeping and dealing with the death of his best friend—a brother, nearly—Anderson’s performance on the field began to come around.

He’s picked up 30 points in batting average from August 1st to now. In 41 games, he’s slashed .320/.331/.543 and reminded most of his rookie campaign.

As for Moncada, Jose Abreu has helped in ways other than lineup protection. Although Abreu hitting behind Moncada and doing his best impression of a wrecking ball (.337/.380/.639 over the last two months) can’t hurt. Abreu suggested that Moncada use a lighter bat. A new shipment of lumber arrived for the White Sox rookie in time for the four-game series against the Royals on September 11th.

Since, Moncada has hit .448 over six games. He’s hit two homers and a triple. He’s driven in six and registered multi-hit games in four of the six. Quite simply, he’s been the sensation White Sox fans and front office alike were hoping for.

Yolmer Sanchez, who’s often been one of the younger players at whatever level of the minors he’s competed at, has shown enough extra-base pop to open eyes. His plate discipline has improved by quite a stretch as well. Through his first 687 MLB plate appearances, his OBP sat at .261. This season it seems regular playing time has benefited the 25 year-old infielder. His OBP is up a full 40 points (.320) and he’s added 11 home runs for good measure.

White Sox manager Ricky Renteria has been quick to say that while Sanchez may not be the double-digit home run type in the future, he’s a big proponent of what Yolmer adds defensively—especially at third.

Each of these three players are, to differing degrees, important to the rebuild. Moncada may very-well be the face of the transition. Anderson, perhaps, a potential steadying force. Sanchez, a meaningful bonus. Regardless of import, we’ll watch each try and carry hot finishes into the start of the 2018 season.

The Latest Garcia to Take Off for the White Sox

It isn’t unfair to say that the 2017 White Sox are not exactly the most interesting team in Major League Baseball this season, so much so that most folks are keeping a sharp eye on their minor league system with perhaps even more interest than their big league roster.

Among this misshapen team of veterans mixed with young players just breaking into their new roles, there is an unlikely, yet possibly extremely beneficial, story blooming in the progression of utility man Leury Garcia.

Besides his memorable appearance pitching against the Boston Red Sox a few seasons ago (likely just behind Adam Dunn as my favorite White Sox Position Player Pitching appearance), there isn’t much that comes to mind when you think of Garcia. He’s part of the trifecta of Garcias on the White Sox roster and has taken on the role of filling Adam Eaton’s shoes in centerfield. That’s about it.

The arrival of new White Sox manager Rick Renteria has installed a fresh coaching perspective to this team and perhaps revived a stale bench. These days, Garcia is seeing a bounty of playing time—more than he’s seen at this point in the season during any year of his career. The consistency seems to be having a positive effect on his performance.

Garcia has always been a fourth outfielder type. A player who has struck out anywhere from 46 to 26 percent of his plate appearances. Just last season, Garcia walked at a rate even lower than Tim Anderson. Garcia’s only true asset was his undeniable speed which aids in his ability to steal bases (21 over his four year career).

Things are a bit different now. Garcia is currently slashing .302/.340/.479 over 104 plate appearances — just around 70 shy of how many plate appearances Garcia previously racked up over any full season of play.

After Friday’s two-home run game against the Padres, Garcia is now comfortably slugging near the .500 mark. His slugging percentage rose nearly 70 points that evening because small sample sizes this early in the season show drastic fluctuation. . Unfortunately, that isn’t sustainable for Garcia. His speed, however, should help him keep his OBP at a healthy level. Garcia is also putting up a 126 wRC+, meaning that he’s sitting 26 points above league average. Again, Friday’s game tacked onto that number, but Garcia was still around a 100 wRC+ before Friday’s game, which is league average. League average is not a term that I suspect anyone ever felt would be attached to Garcia.

Besides seeing more regular playing time, what’s the major difference been for Garcia this year? Well, it’s actually quite obvious once you look a bit deeper into his numbers. Garcia’s plate patience and ability to read good pitches to hit has skyrocketed:

O-Swing% O-Contact% Z-Swing% Z-Contact% SwStr%
2014 37.9 67.3 69.3 83.5 11.9
2015 31.4 45.5 66.7 77.8 16.1
2016 32.3 65.6 69.8 77.6 13.3
2017 32.8 79.3 73.4 89.5 7.2

Garcia’s outside-the-zone swings have become extremely productive. He’s barely raised his percentage of swings outside the zone, while tacking on nearly 14 percentage points to his outside-the-zone contact rate. Garcia is also seeing pitches in the zone better, swinging at them just 4 percentage points higher than last season, while making 12 percent more contact.

And this is all while Garcia has only raised is overall swing rate by 3 percentage points, added a ton of quality contact, and lowered his swinging strike rate by 5 points. Oh, did I mention that his strikeout rate has nearly halved this season? Garcia struck out in 27 percent of his plate appearances last year. This year, he’s striking out at just a 13 percent clip. Pretty impressive. (His walk rate is still menial but, hey, the guy can’t fix everything at once.)

Garcia may never be an everyday player on a strong, contending team but, if he continues to see regular at bats during a time when the White Sox can afford for him to scuffle in the name of finding his stride, Garcia will round out to be a solid, valuable asset to the future of the White Sox’s bench arsenal; a major key to the success of any well rounded team. Looks like all Garcia needed was to be given a chance to show that he is able to play successfully at the Major League level, something he wasn’t truly afforded in his previous seasons on the South Side.

My Right Arm for a Lefty Bat

Over the course of the White Sox six-game losing streak, runs have been tough to come by. No kidding, right? That’s what makes a losing streak. Still even when the White Sox have clicked, there’s been a glaring deficiency: A lefty bat.

Friday night against Jhoulys Chacin, the White Sox two-through-six hitters were all right handed. Chacin, also, is right handed. The White Sox entered the game hitting .218 off right handed pitching–last in the league. The White Sox two-through-six went 2-15 with one walk and three strikeouts against right handed pitching. The White Sox could really use a lefty bat.

That’s not so say they don’t have just such bats. After starting hot with two doubles in the season opener and steady work through April, it’s been a rough May for Melky Cabrera. Melky (who’s obviously a switch hitter) has much better numbers against right handers (.256/.308/.341) this year than left handers (.182/.250/.273) but neither slash line really jumps off the page. That such a veteran and versatile bat has been cold to start the year has been tough for the Sox to swallow. Good news is Melky is hardly striking out. Perhaps it’s just a run of the mill slump. After a putting up a .289/.429/.667 slash line in Spring Training, Cody Asche looked like he might give the White Sox some of the balance they needed. At least he’d be counted on to give a competitive at-bat in a platoon split with Matt Davidson in the corner/DH role but Asche’s struggles have been mighty and lengthy. Yolmer Sanchez gives a bit of pop off the bench and in situational roles but the switch-hitting, sawed-off utility man is buried behind Tyler Saladino and Tim Anderson in the middle of the infield and, Matt Davidson and Todd Frazier at third.

Omar Narvaez has been productive, but in a very unsurprising way. His .377 OBP is second on the team (Avisail Garcia is first at .382) but he simply doesn’t hit for power. Don’t get me wrong, a .260 average and a .380 on-base is just fine for a backstop but it seems the plan all along was to have Narvaez work in a time share with Geovany Soto (now Kevan Smith with Soto on the DL for the second time). That plan, too, makes sense as Narvaez has just 388 plate appearances above high A ball with 183 of those coming in The Show. How nuts is that? Kind of makes you look at ‘ol Omar (he’s 25) in a different light.

Which brings us to another switch hitter: Leury Garcia. The Middle Garcia. After plugging two home runs in Friday night’s loss to the Padres, the Median Garcia is hitting .304/.343/.489. It gives him the second highest average, the third highest on-base, and the third highest slugging percentage on the White Sox this year. Leury the Middlemost has never hit for power. Ever. His career slugging percentage in the minor leagues is .275 though, to be fair, he did hit the crap out of the ball in the 2011 Arizona Fall League (.361/.379/.590). Right now, past be damned, Leury might be the most intriguing player on the White Sox. He just turned 26. He can handle at least three and possibly up to six positions at major-league average caliber. He has raked. His strikeout rate, which was at 27 percent all through his minor league career and 33 percent in all of his major league time, is at 14 percent this year. Fourteen percent! That’s in the DJ LeMahieu-Francisco Lindor-Ian Kinsler-Anthony Rizzo range.

I have no idea if Leury can rise above the Mean and become Leury the… well… other meaning of mean. Odds are, no, he can’t keep up this kind of production. But, hell, every early-season column ends up with that same conclusion and that’s absolutely no fun. So, for now, enjoy what we’re watching and just maybe the White Sox have helped Leury elevate from the middle ground.

Fear Not Joy, Baseball Fans

Chicago White Sox’ Matt Davidson celebrates his solo home run off Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Ryan Pressly as he heads to the dugout during the seventh inning of a baseball game Friday, April 14, 2017, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

By Connor McKnight

Don’t fret over dingers.

That’s the best advice I can give you after two weeks of baseball
I’ll explain.
Whether it’s in phone calls to the Post Game Show or tweets to the Mailbag, there have been some White Sox fans worrying themselves over quality production from Avisail Garcia and/or Matt Davidson. Both players, it seems, come with their own, individual hang-ups. I’ll see if I can describe them to you.
“But Garcia has ALWAYS been streaky! He’s been through weeks like this before where he looks like the second coming and then, all of a sudden, he turns into empty at-bats and all the swing and miss you can handle. Why should I be excited about him now?”
For Davidson, it’s a bit different: “Sure, a .909 slugging percentage is wonderful but what about that 50% strikeout rate? There’s no way he’s worth getting hyped over.”
Early baseball does weird things to everyone. My best advice, though admittedly it’s probably more patronizing than you’d like, is to not worry about it. Just let yourself enjoy it for a little bit. Let the weirdness of the small sample size wash over you, secure in the knowledge that a month from now, we’ll have numbers attached to players that firmly constitute their worth and tell us exactly what we’ve been dying to know for months… probably.
There’s no mistaking the fact that the White Sox have, by and large, pitched themselves to right around the .500 mark. The bullpen has been fantastic and holding slim leads while the Sox starters have only once taken a game into the seventh inning (Jose Quintana’s second start of the year). The offense hasn’t exactly achieved the “feast or famine” cliche–even in low scoring games, the Sox have gotten runners on to threaten. It has, however, lived and died on the power bats of three players; Garcia, Davidson and Geovany Soto. With Soto on the DL with elbow inflammation, the list gets thinner. Still, my advice is revel in the little things.
For instance on Friday night, Davidson, facing Ryan Pressly’s 97 mph heater, looked absolutely lost through four pitches. Pressly had thrown a clean first inning, striking out two, and looked in command of his breaking stuff and the fastball. Davidson tipped the first pitch, a 93 mph fastball foul. The second, another fastball, perfectly hit the low and away corner of the strike zone for strike two. Davidson, now 0-2, managed to lay off pitch high and away that could have easily been called strike three. It wasn’t, and by the grace of the baseball gods, Davidson would see another pitch. The fourth, a curveball low and away, was a waste-pitch that anyone could have seen coming. Davidson took and prepared for the 2-2. Mind you, he hasn’t seemed comfortable, taken a quality swing or had a quality take all at-bat. The closest things got were knowing on 1-2, after three straight fastballs, a breaking ball was coming.
The fifth pitch of the at-bat was a belt-high 90 mph slider that did anything but. Davidson pounced, rode it out to right field, and gave the Sox the 2-1 lead.
Watching Davidson, strikeout problems and all, hang in an at-bat he seemingly had no right to be in and STILL drive a mistake pitch out of the ball park is a blast. It can be for you, too.
I don’t mean to just whistle Dixie. It would be nice to see Tim Anderson lower his sights some and lay off the high fastball. Todd Frazier seemed to just start taking quality hacks before food poisoning took him (and his lunch) from where they were supposed to be. Tyler Saladino has had some incredibly patient at bats but has yet to be completely rewarded for solid contact. Jacob May is yet to get a hit.
These are things you’re right to want to turn around and smart to keep an
Connor McKnight is the pre- and post-game host for Chicago White Sox baseball on WLS-AM 890. He also hosts White Sox Live, a weekend radio podcast .

Opening Day is Upon Us

When the White Sox hit the field to start the 2017 season at Guaranteed Rate, the wait for baseball will be over. There will be more waiting, however, as rumors of franchise altering trades have persisted through spring.

Pieces of the organization’s future will certainly be seen. The Sox anointed Tim Anderson as a franchise short stop with a long term extension. When he’s healthy, Carlos Rodon will work to prove himself an Ace.
Others, like Jose Quintana, Todd Frazier, Melky Cabrera and David Robertson, are ties to the past with clear impact on the future. When and if the veterans are traded, the analysis of the prospect haul will begin anew. So far, the players received from the Red Sox and Nationals in the Chris Sale and Adam Eaton trades have gone through a fairly typical national reception.
First, the hauls were lauded. Then, expectations were tempered by the Sox front office with GM Rick Hahn telling all who would listen that prospects would be given time to grow in the minors. Call-up dates were pondered and calendar dates circled by fans and press. Prospects were reevaluated after spring training performances that may or may not mean anything.
It’s baseball as usual.
The gravity of this season can’t be denied. The White Sox have laid out the path they’re on. There’s been no mincing of words. Watching minor league results and trade rumors will be as much a part of evaluating on field talent.
For our part, on the Post Game Show and White Sox Weekly, we know that’s where the focus will be. We’ll bring you updates from Charlotte, Birmingham, WInston-Salem, and Kannapolis. We’ll talk trade rumors and entertain trade ideas from fans.
While the business of rebuilding a franchise is a serious one, let’s not forget that baseball is fun and there’s fun to be had while a young team grows. We won’t discourage that.
So, Sox fans, through the cold (and rain?) of opening day through the trade deadline and barreling through the dog days of August, we want you involved with the broadcast here on WLS. The Sox have chosen to reshape the franchise and you can come along for the ride with us.

Tim Anderson to Sign Six-Year Deal with White Sox

Chicago White Sox’s Tim Anderson, left, slides safely into second base on a double during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Chicago, Friday, June 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

By Connor McKnight, WLS-AM 890 Sports

(CHICAGO) Reports Tuesday morning indicated that the White Sox will sign shortstop Tim Anderson to a six-year deal worth approximately $25 million. The deal would have two option years tacked on to the end and would potential keep Anderson on the Southside until his age-31 season. Further, if the financials are as reported, the deal would be the largest contract in MLB history for a player with less than one-year of service time.

The conversation between the two sides was initially reported by MLB.com. The length of the deal was reported by Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports while the financials were reported by Bob Nightengale of USA Today.

Anderson, 23, hit .283/.306/.432 with nine home runs in 140 at-bats during his first season at the MLB level. His defense, which had been questioned by scouts during his rise through the minor leagues, largely impressed during the 2016 season. Certainly there were errors (14 of them) but, for the most part, they were rookie mistakes the Sox hope they can iron out with coaching and repetition. Anderson’s range at short, overall speed, and strong accurate arm seem more than enough to fit the profile at the toughest position on the field.

The deal may stand as an important marker in the White Sox rebuild. While the White Sox were able to recoup a tremendous value in prospects from Chris Sale and Adam Eaton (themselves signed to early, long-term extensions by the team) identifying the next core is crucial.

The hope is that Anderson develops a bit more patience at the plate (MLB Network’s CJ Nitkowski noted that Anderson was just the 13th player in MLB history to strikeout more than 100 times and walk less than 15 times in his first 400 ABs) and keeps the speed and power he’s shown when he does connect. Contact issues aside, Anderson logged multi-hit efforts in exactly one-third of his games (33 in 99 games played) and, with his speed, is always a threat to take the extra bag.

Anderson’s spring has been a productive one, as well, and has drawn rave reviews from coaches and scouts alike. Clearly, the White Sox believe they’ve found the next member of their young core.


© WLS-AM 890

Dear God, Thank You for making Tim Anderson

(CHICAGO) Ten-year-old Catholic school student, Danny Saracini, came home from one of his first days of school with an important homework assignment. He was asked to write down the things he was most thankful for and from those items create a prayer.

Having back-to-school writer’s block, he was frustrated and defeated. His mom, Jane, suggested, “Danny, why don’t you just write about baseball?”

Danny did just that.

Jane got a kick out of the prayer and sent it over to WLS-AM to show Ed Farmer and White Sox player, Tim Anderson.


Dear God, Thank you for helping mankind discover baseball and the White Sox. Thank you for making Tim Anderson because he makes a big difference on the team.


Well, we did more than that. We brought Danny and his family to the ballpark for a little meet-and-greet!

Danny watches the game as dad Jim, sister Ellen, WLS-AM 890’s Jen DeSalvo, mom Jane and brother Jimmy smile for the camera.


Danny meets Ed Farmer!


Jimmy, Danny & Ellen in the Press Box


An Ed Famer-Danny fist bump.


Little did we know, Jane and Jim Saracini were actually married at the Stadium Club 15 years ago!



The Saracini Family meets Tim Anderson

Jen DeSalvo, WLS-AM 890 News


Chicago White Sox's Tim Anderson, left, slides safely into second base on a double during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Chicago, Friday, June 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Chicago White Sox’s Tim Anderson, left, slides safely into second base on a double during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Chicago, Friday, June 24, 2016. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)


I’ve been using the hashtag #TimAndersonIsFast since he was called up to the White Sox June 10th. It’s not a very good hashtag, I’ll admit. It’s accurate though–you’ve got to give me that–and while his speed might be the most #obvi facet of his game, there’s more to come. The question is when.

Anderson has flashed speed and speed kills. While he’s only stolen two bags so far this year (he’s not been caught), his speed has shown up in other areas. Whether stretching a single into a double, a double into a triple or flashing impressive quickness in chasing ground balls to either side, Anderson uses his speed as a weapon; it sharpens every aspect of his game.

With eight multi-hit games in 17, the hit tool has played well. Yes, Anderson swings a lot. A lot, a lot. And there are fair questions to ask about whether a BABIP around .370 and zero walks in 78 plate appearances is a sustainable player profile–especially out of the leadoff spot.

Typically, Anderson has been swing-heavy and strikeout prone in his first go’s at a new levels. Eventually, the extreme nature of things tends to settle down and be becomes a much more projectable and sustainable player. He’s never going to be Wade Boggs at the plate but he figures out how to take a free pass or two.

To me, here’s where the speed plays in. In the third inning Tuesday night against the Twins, Anderson reached on an infield single to the left side. It was his second infield hit of the season. Despite relatively weak contact, his speed was able to turn him into a base runner. If that buys him an extra hit per week, it would, quite obviously, be a massive boost to the White Sox overall production as opposed to the alternative.

For now, Anderson is working for the White Sox. In a very real way, that’s all they need to worry about. While getting sub-normal first halves from Todd Frazier and Jose Abreu (although he’s certainly come around in June) the White Sox need all the offense they can get. #TimAndersonIsFast has helped set the table. Now the middle of the lineup needs to help speed him on home.

@ 2016 WLS-AM News