The White Sox opened their season with a pair of three game set against divisional foes Cleveland and Minnesota, they lost both series two games to one. The common theme was a lack of offense, which was the big concern coming into the season. People knew the White Sox would pitch with a great staff and a deep and talented bullpen, but for a team the struggled to score runs in 2009, how would they cope with the loss of Jim Thome and Jermaine Dye, two players who had long been fixtures in the middle of the White Sox order.
To be succinct, the answer in 'not well.' At least not on the face of it. But the truth as it always seems to be is somewhat more complex. Yes, the White Sox did struggle to score just 21 runs in those six games (3.5R/G) but they also had miserable luck, hitting just .203 with a BABIP of just .200. Clearly that won't always be the case, and as that luck turns - and it always does - the average will rise and the brand of baseball Manager Ozzie Guillen wants to see; high average, speed on the bases, situation hitting... should begin to work out. The two players who did hit, are precisely the guys you'd expect, Paul Konerko (1.229) and Carlos Quentin (1.150). How Quentin fares over the course of the season coming back from injury, and whether or not he can hold up for the whole season, will be vital to the teams success.
On the bump, the White Sox pitching fared every bit as well as the fans could've hoped, allowing just 20 runs (19 earned) in the six contests, for a team ERA of 2.95. Leading the way were the starters with an ERA of just 2.77 with Mark Buehrle, John Danks, Gavin Floyd, and Freddy Garcia all pitched brilliantly.
The offense for the White Sox is going to come around, and as long as their brilliant pitching staff can stay healthy, this is a team that will be a formidable challenge for anyone in baseball as the season wears on.