by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
The White Sox are a team playing for the future, and they have been taking these final few weeks to analyze some of the younger players on their roster. Tim Anderson has gotten a lot of the attention, with a red hot September, but he’s not alone. Let’s take a look at a few of the youngsters getting an opportunity and trying to decide if they have any appeal:
Yoan Moncada – Second Baseman
We all know the hype that’s surrounded Yoan Moncada, as well as the disappointment that he’s been. That’s until recently, as he’s hitting .306 with 5 HR, 11 RBI, 16 R and 2 SB over 17 September games. Now the question is if he’s finally figured something out, or if this is nothing more than a flash in the pan.
The big question has always been his ability to make contact, and while he’s “improved” in September it’s not like his 29.1% strikeout rate is going to impress anyone. That said his Whiff% for the month shows a bit of promise:
- Hard – 8.82%
- Breaking – 12.07%
- Offspeed – 30.00%
Obviously there’s still work to be done against offspeed pitches, but his marks against other pitches brings hope that he can continue making contact and further improve his strikeout rate. If that’s the case there’s little question that the power and speed plays, and he should continue to be a productive option moving forward.
It will be interesting to see how he closes out the season, but ride the hot streak for now.
Adam Engel – Outfielder
The youngster is getting regular playing time in the Chicago outfield, though he hasn’t taken advantage hitting .189 with 2 HR and 1 SB over 74 AB in September. For a player expected to provide some speed, he’s struck out a ridiculous 35.5% for the month and that cripples his value. There’s a good chance the White Sox look towards another option over the final week of the season, and Engel is easily ignored.
Yolmer Sanchez – Third Baseman
He’s finishing strong, hitting .275 with 3 HR and 3 SB over 69 AB in September. There’s nothing awful about his strikeout rate (23.4%), though he’s posted a 50.0% fly ball rate for the month. He’s not a tremendous power option, so it’s a bit of a scary number (and makes it unlikely that he can maintain his current .327 BABIP this month). Obviously anything can happen over the course of a week, so if you need to ride him go for it (especially since he sees a lot of time hitting atop the order). However it’s a trend to keep an eye on as we head into ’18.
Sources – Fangraphs, Brooks Baseball