Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Almost Time to Retake Your Positions

Every April, the debate begins. Heck, the way baseball is now, it is almost a 12 month a year sport, but the REAL debating starts opening day.

"Your team sucks!"..."No, your team sucks!"

Get ready to hear those phrases, and worse, beginning with game one of the 162 game schedule.

In the off-season, Sox and Cubs fans can ALMOST coexist. Once Opening Day comes, the battle begins.

The White Sox fans can always pull out that World Series Championship from 2005, while the Cubs fans say, I don't believe I am writing this, "This is the Season!"

It should be the season. The Cubs should dominate their division as they appear to have gotten a bit stronger, with the addition of Aaron Miles and Milton Bradley. Their pitching looks deep. When your only concern is how the fifth starter will do, you are pretty well set. And don't worry, given the opportunity over the whole season, Sean Marshall should be just fine.

I heard a lot of talk about where Soriano should bat in the lineup. What difference does it make? Granted, he is not your prototypical leadoff hitter, but his numbers at the top of the order are good...just leave him there and move on. Derrek Lee hitting third is the question. You can drop the big first baseman down to sixth or seventh, as long as it doesn't get into his head, but I don't think Lee is the type to let his ego get bruised.

Cubs fans, all you need to worry about is getting a win in the post season. For some unknown reason, when the bright lights come out, the Cubs bats have shriveled away. Good Luck!

As for the South Siders, it will definitely be an interesting season with more youngsters in camp than this team has seen in years.

I can't wait for Gordon Beckham to make the big club, but it likely won't be this season. Fields and Viciedo will battle it out for third, Jayson Nix looks like he could surprise and grab that second base spot, and if Jerry Owens stays healthy, I expect him to patrol center field for a majority of the games. Dwayne Wise is giving him a run for his money. We shall see.

How about the old duo of Contreras and Colon? Jose is way ahead of schedule. He has a new girlfriend, has dropped thirty pounds, and could be ready to break camp with the rest of the starting 25 man roster. Colon was a gamble, and not an expensive one. If he can give the Sox innings from the right side, he will be just what Kenny Williams wants as the youngsters have more time to mature. Jeff Marquez looks good early. I am a big fan of Clayton Richard.

I know you have heard this before, but I truly believe Paul Konerko is ready to give the Sox an entire season of good play. I know I am taking a risk here, but he is due.

The Sox division won't be easy, but it wasn't supposed to be last season and the Sox won it in extra time.

Have fun with the baseball in the city this season...and whatever you do, don't tell me you like both teams! Impossible. Pick one and stick with it. That's what it's all about.