Chicago White Sox Spring Training: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Steven KersteinContributor IMarch 21, 2012

Chicago White Sox Spring Training: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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    For any of you who have read my articles, I'm what you may call an optimist.

    While this may an exaggeration or an outright lie is up for debate, this piece will have happy elements. Of course, happy elements are those that don't make me want to tear out my hair as a Sox fan.

    To this point in spring training, the White Sox have accumulated a 5-11 record with a -28 run differential. 

    You don't have to remind me that spring training stats don't count. To some degree, they count to me.

    Regardless of this subpar mark in exhibition games, there are some things that have caught my eye. Some good, some bad and some just plain ugly.

    Turn the page.

The Good: Adam Dunn's Spring Training Numbers

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    Get over it, White Sox fans. Adam Dunn was egregiously terrible in the 2011 season.  

    But maybe, he's only bad in years that have the same digit twice in a row?

    That's what I'm banking on. (Don't worry even Kenny Williams or whoever is running the team in 2022 won't give $14 million a year.)

    All sarcasm and hogwash aside, I'm a much stronger campaign from the Big Donkey.

    Don't take my word, just take a look at his spring training numbers. As of March 21st, Dunn has hit .263 in 19 ABs while smacking two long balls.

    Guess how many strikeouts? I'll tell you—one. One measly K so far this spring. Glory Hallelujah! 

    I just got way too excited for a guy who hit .159 last season and who was outhomered by Brent Lillibridge.

    Talk about looking for a silver lining. Next.  

Chris Sale's Transition to the Starting Rotation

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    Chris Sale's potential can actually force a genuine smile out of me.  

    He's got frontline stuff and a funky delivery.

    After this past outing against Cincinnati, where he retired 18 out of 20 batters, he surely opened some eyes. Fantasy baseball experts are considering Sale as a sleeper for starting pitchers.  

    Nobody on the South Side is sleeping on this youngster. 

    My only concern for Sale is that his delivery will make him injury-prone. His delivery combined with the pitch increase worries me. Time will tell.

    If he's healthy and throwing strikes, he's going to be sick. (If grandma or grandpa are reading, sick's a good thing.)

The Bad: The Offense or Lack Thereof

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    I'm looking up and down the White Sox hitter's spring training statistics and nothing excites me.

    Only the mighty Eduardo Escobar is raking. The youngster is hitting .429 and has clubbed a homer and driven in six. Not bad for a guy who's 23. 

    Back to my point. Nobody who I will realistically be watching on an every day basis is doing much of anything.  

    Dayan Viciedo is hitting a robust .133 while Alexei Ramirez and Paul Konerko are hitting .226 and .219 respectably. Talk about an intimidating middle of the lineup.

    But it's spring training and I love Paulie. How couldn't I?

    In a week, I expect all these averages to be on the up and up. If not, Eduardo Escobar it is!

The Bad: Jesse Crain's Health

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    Jesse Crain had a crazy, good year last season.  

    The long-time Twinkie boasted an 8-3 W-L record while maintaining a 2.62 ERA in his first season with his former team's arch-nemesis.   

    Throughout spring training, the righty has battled an oblique injury that has kept him off the mound.

    The White Sox training staff has advised the hurler not to rush back anytime soon. Not exactly the best news for a team with a ton of uncertainty surrounding the bullpen.

    Nonetheless, Crain's unexpected absence might serve as a blessing in disguise. One of the young guns like Addison Reed or Hector Santiago will be forced to step up and perform.

    So much for easing the youngsters into the big leagues.

The Ugly: Jake Peavy and John Danks

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    If I gave every reader of mine $25 million, what do you think they would do with it?  

    While they might retire and move to Hawaii or buy a lifetime supply of Skittles, they definitely wouldn't pay $25 million for the services of John Danks and Jake Peavy for the 2012 season.

    (Unless they are actually genies who will grant you three wishes each. I forgot that Jake Peavy is in fact not Shaquille O'Neal in Kazaam.)

    Nevertheless, these two pitchers are making a ton of money and their performances have certainly not earned this loot.  

    In spring training, the two "frontline" pitchers have already combined for five losses. Oh yeah, Peavy is sporting a groovy 8.68 ERA while Danks is setting the world on fire with his 7.00 mark.

    How much did Miami pay for Mark Buehrle and is it too late to steal him back?

    But don't worry: Jake Peavy looked flawless in his last outing.  

    Hopefully, his arm will stayed attached to his back. 

Conclusion

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    I decided not to do another ugly slide because it would only make me sad.  

    I know it's just spring training but then why are the Tigers 13-2?

    Shouldn't they be "not caring" about spring training too? Guess their MLB best spring training mark must just be some magical coincidence.

    The 2012 season will surely be interesting: one that will be full of moments wishing that there is a bottle of Jack Daniels somewhere in sight.

    While spring training might not actually mean anything, the good, the bad and the ugly moments that I've touched on surely have to have some type of meaning.

    Do they?