The White Sox are not picked to do all that well in 2021 according to PECOTA projections.
The Chicago White Sox are hoping for bigger and better things in 2021 after making the postseason in 2020. That ended a drought that lasted over a decade and got fans excited for this season with a bunch of young and veteran talent.
Hiring manager Tony La Russa came with some controversy, but the core of Jose Abreu, Tim Anderson, Yoan Moncada, Eloy Jimenez, and Luis Robert, among others, has fans believing a World Series could be near.
Baseball Prospectus’ 2021 PECOTA projections are out and pouring a bucket of cold water on those hopes.
PECOTA is pumping the brakes on the White Sox hype train
PECOTA has the team finishing 83-79 for a third-place finish in the American League Central. That’s right, the Cleveland Indians are still projected to finish better even after trading away Francisco Lindor. So what gives?
This White Sox core simply hasn’t proven they can be a consistent winner. One has to also imagine the 2020 results aren’t given too much weight considering the shortened year.
Lance Lynn was acquired to bolster the rotation and closer Liam Hendriks shores up the back of the bullpen. Still, PECOTA is likely considering the fact that when you take away 2020 the White Sox have a total of two winnings seasons since making the 2008 postseason.
The introduction of La Russa into this clubhouse is perhaps the most intriguing storyline of the season. The 76-year-old has not been in the dugout since the 2011 season and is openly against the practices of players like Anderson who like to toss their bats and show some emotion on the field. Fans are now hoping he has softened up a bit and doesn’t tank the clubhouse upon arrival.
Some White Sox fans may have World Series expectations on the mind. This PECOTA projection may give them a dose of reality and keep the focus on simply competing for a playoff spot.