Watching most of the Chicago White Sox games from this season, it is easy to realize this isn’t 2005 anymore.
Since the World Series championship season of ’05, the team from the South Side of Chicago hasn’t been much to brag about to friends with zero playoff series wins and just a single postseason win since the wire-to-wire champions season.
The last postseason win? That came on Oct. 5, 2008 against the Tampa Bay Rays.
So yeah, it’s been a while.
In fact, that series, which came during the final few months of the presidential tenure of George W. Bush, was the last time the Sox have played in the postseason.
Since then, Chicago has had finishes of third, second, third and second in the AL Central.
Currently (headed into Saturday’s game with the Cleveland Indians), the Sox are 32-45, good enough for fifth and last place in the division. They dropped a doubleheader with Cleveland Friday.
Just think, this is the same roster who had a realistic chance to win the division last season in the final month of the season.
Seems like years ago.
Something has to be done for the future, because the team is nine games away from the lead, and there isn’t an Oakland Athletics type of comeback to the top of the standings anywhere in sight.
So what should the White Sox do?
How do they go with their own motto and “Make an Impact?”
I say: sell, sell, sell.
It pains me to write that the Sox need to throw in the towel or wave the white flag – however you want to describe a way to play out the rest of the season – but really, is the current roster of players going to get them back to the postseason?
My answer is no.
If any Sox fan is happy with what they are watching this season, then I can honestly say they probably aren’t watching the games, or even looking at the box scores.
They’ve struggled with their friends from the North Side of the city this season, struggled against teams in their own division, and I want to push the memories of the series with the Houston Astros far out of my memory.
I have a worse feeling now than I did during the ’07 season.
Being a stats guy, let’s look at a couple statistics from this season.
Of the nine players who have played 55 or more games this season, not one has a batting average higher than .280, with five being lower than .250 headed into the weekend series.
There are more stats, like the fact four players who have played in 70-plus games have a slugging percentage of .410 to .460, but I just want to stop now.
The Sox are 4-6 in their past 10 games, along with a losing road record at 15-28, but every team in the AL Central is under .500 on the road. They are 17-15 at home, so there is something to hold onto, but again, no team in the Central has a losing mark at home, either.
Trading expiring contracts and veterans – and again, it saddens me to write this – would make the team better for future seasons.
I wasn’t a fan of the Adam Dunn contract from day one (he does have 20 home runs and a .763 batting average, but 89 strikeouts isn’t something that can be easily overlooked), and it is safe to say, from my standpoint, that contract has been a wash.
Having Paul Konerko at first base has been one of the better moments of being a fan of this team in my lifetime, but he deserves to be playing on a contender, not wallowing around on a last-place team in one of the weaker divisions of the AL for the foreseeable future.
Even though he’s the last remaining player from the championship team of ’05, if the Sox can gain possible prospects for him before his contract runs out, it would be in the best interest of the Sox to say goodbye to him like they have every other mainstay on the team the past few seasons.
Am I not right on this?
Rebuilding is never fun for anyone – fans, players or the front office – but every team seems to go through it eventually.
Why should rebuilding be any fun, though? Just the word “rebuilding” means something structural isn’t right to begin with, so that means something has to be fixed.
The Sox’s motto this season is “Make An Impact.” Maybe it is time they start taking their own advice and start making an impact for upcoming seasons, because they sure aren’t winning now.