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Thursday, March 31, 2011
Opening Day Only One Day Away
Even though snow looms ahead for the Northeastern states baseball season officially began today. Mark Buehrle will begin the season for the White Sox by throwing the first pitch in the White sox's opener in Cleveland. Cameras will flash and fans will watch in awe as the offseason months finally come to an end. The offseason never goes as fast as expected for baseball fans. The slow winter lives on and on until pitchers and catchers report. Spring training is only a glimpse and even though it seems as though the season has started fans realize that it is only training and the players will truly be put to the ultimate test in months time. Tomorrow the White Sox will be put to that test along with high expectations surrounding the club. The White Sox really made it clear what their intentions were for the season. Every team's goal is to win it all but the White Sox really put themselves in a position to truly achieve that feat. With the 2005 team there was a great deal of restructuring and modifying from the 2004 team so this year a lot of fans are wondering what the team will look like when the players take the field. The answer is simple: The team will look stellar and talented. To get into more detail you have to turn your attention to the depth chart. The infield is full of young as well as veteran talent. Brent Morel, who really proved himself in the final month of the 2010 season, won over third base. Joe Crede did a fantastic job there during his time, especially during 2005, so it is hard for any player to fill in that spot. Mark Teahen was expected to be decent in that area last year but injuries dampened his season. Omar vizquel filled in instead and earned himself another year with the Sox because of it. This year though it will all fall on Brent Morel, a rookie. Alexei Ramirez will continue to stand between second and third base at short, hopefully continuing a long hot streak that began last season. He was stellar in defense and the streak even won him a silver sluggers award. Beckham, who is no longer a rookie, will also add some young talent at second. He had a disappointing season last year, maybe high expectations were a factor in his downfall, but Greg Walker says he worked on Beckhams hitting and expects him to do great things in 2011. A.J. Piersynski will proudly crouch behind the plate as a returning 2005 player. He calls a great game and adds some experience versus having prospect Tyler Flowers in that position. Of course down the line from home plate Paul Konerko will reside as the golden aspect of the infield and of the whole team for that matter. His leadership talent and veteran experience will be a great ingredient toward success. On and off the field he can help the young players and lighten the mood. As for the outfield, the Sox have built up a pretty strong three. Juan Pierre will add speed to the team that he can use by stealing or chasing long fly balls. Alex Rios was great in the three spot last year hitting extra base hits and even a few longballs. To the right of Rios will be Carlos Quentin. No one knows for sure what type of year he will have, but hopefully his hot streak will last more then a month. With Quentin consistency is his biggest problem, he is either amazing or in a terrible slump. Hopefully this season he will be more balanced. Simply, if Quentin is hitting the Sox are winning. Overall, that is how the Sox will enter the field tomorrow, and most certainly with their mitts they will carry hopes and dreams of winning a World Series title.