Joel Embiid Should be Considered an MVP Candidate
It is only January and a lot of people are talking about either James Harden or Giannis Antetokounmpo to win the MVP, but what about Joel Embiid?
The Chicago White Sox 2018 season has been nothing to write home about, but the past few weeks have been very kind to the Chicago White Sox. They are 7-3 in their last ten games, including going 4-3 against the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees in their last seven games.
The White Sox's record is 55-82 so far this season. They are tied for third in the AL Central with the Detroit Tigers and 22.5 games back of the Cleveland Indians for first place in the AL Central.
Chicago has not made it to the playoffs since 2008. That is when they lost to the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS. Ever since, the White Sox have been building through the draft and they have one of the best farm systems in baseball.
Because of their farm system and the way they have been playing baseball right now, the Chicago White Sox are starting to turn the corner. They will obviously finish the season with an under .500 record to the season. Chicago would either have the fifth or sixth pick in the MLB Draft if the season ended today.
The White Sox will be ready to blossom in 2019 or 2020. It wasn't a surprise they struggled this season.
Jose Abreu has been Chicago's best player in 2018. His batting average is .272 with 22 home runs and 78 RBI's, along with two stolen bases. Abreu's on-base percentage is .331.
Tim Anderson has a .248 batting average with 18 home runs and 59 RBI's, along with 25 stolen bases. His on-base percentage is .291.
Matt Davidson has a .239 batting average with 19 home runs and 56 RBI's. His on-base percentage is .332.
Omar Naravez has a .284 batting average with six home runs and 24 RBI's. His on-base percentage is .374.
The pitching also has been a lot better lately. Michael Kopech and Carlos Rondon have been stabilizing this starting rotation.
Kopech was recently called up from Triple-A Charlotte and he has a 1-0 record with a 0.82 ERA. In 11 innings pitched, he has given up 11 hits and one run. Michael Kopech has walked one batter and has struck out nine. He has the potential to be the White Sox's ace next season and Kopech is just 22 years old.
Rodon's record is 6-4 with a 2.89 ERA. He has pitched in 99.2 innings and has given up 64 hits and 36 runs. Rodon has walked 38 batters and has struck out 75.
James Shields has been the veteran presence in the rotation, but he has a shaky 6-15 record and a 4.39 ERA. In 182.1 innings pitched, Shield has given up 166 hits and 101 runs. He has walked 69 batters and has struck out 141.
Joakim Soria has been Chicago's closer. His record is 0-3 with a 2.56 ERA. In 38.2 innings pitched, he has given up 35 hits and 13 runs. Soria has walked 10 batters and has struck out 49. He has 16 saves in 19 tries.
Rick Renteria has been the White Sox's manager for the past two seasons. Chicago has some key top prospects in the system like outfielders Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert, Blake Rutherford, and Luis Alexander Basabe, second baseman/shortstop Nick Madrigal, right-handed pitchers Dylan Cease, Dane Dunning and Alec Hansen, and catcher Zack Collins.
They could make an immediate impact once those guys are called up. The Chicago White Sox could be a surprise team in 2019 and beyond.