Two White Sox blog's in one day, but I don't care! Rick Hahn's got me feeling like it's 5 minutes before close on a Saturday, but it's 3:46 PM on a Thursday. I really thought the best part of my day was going to be the Carne Asada I'm making in the Crock Pot, but Rick Hahn and the Chicago White Sox come from the clouds and sign Yoan Moncada to one of the more team friendly extensions I've ever seen.
I'm definitely going to have gout by the time I'm 30
When the rumors of a Moncada extension were being tossed around the interwebs, I was assuming it'd come in at 7-years $125ish, and rightfully so, but locking up at 24-year old 5.7 WAR player who's only getting better until he's 30 (barring the club option) is the equivalent of a walk off grand slam. I guess the Sox really are worried about his shitty start in Spring Training, because we know those numbers mean absolutely everything.
But in all seriousness, Yoan Moncada has developed into one of baseball's premiere third basemen after one full campaign at the hot corner. I mean for fucks sake, he's edging out the likes of Kris Bryant on some analysts list (not that those matter), but it's still a sign that pundits (and fans in turn) across the league are going to start taking the Sox serious. It was a goddamn shame when Sox fans were calling for his head after leading Major League Baseball in strikeouts as in 2018, his first full year in the bigs. That's how White Sox fans tend to be, the overwhelming majority of White Sox fans tend to overreact about everything
I was confident that YoYo would have a breakout campaign at his natural position last season, and was floored with the improvements he made in a year. Will his .406 BABIP last? History says no, but I think Moncada's traditional statistics are going to be more visually appealing to the average fan this year having more support in the lineup everyday. STEAMER has Moncada projected slash line of .267/.341/.476 in comparison to his 2019 numbers of .315/.367/.548, but there's no chance in hell he sees regression like that. I never thought I'd agree with Ricky Renteria on this, but DaTa IsN't EvErYtHiNg! Having more help top to bottom is going to allow Moncada to play with less pressure this season, and that sounds like a total meatball take (it is), but tell me that I'm wrong. And you tell me this swing (from the left side) isn't the best you've seen since Junior:
Obviously the deal is phenomenal, no ifs, ands or buts about it. And as a lifelong White Sox fan, this offseason has honestly been a dream. The Front Office has shown a commitment to winning by going out and getting Grandal, Keuchel, Encarnacion, Mazara and Gio. Obviously I have my worries about them, whether it's Keuchel having a short stop who can't figure out how to field a ground ball and getting rocked in the tin can that is the G-Spot (1.3 HR/9 in '19) or Mazara struggling as the everyday Right Fielder; they're making the necessary moves to win now while still preparing for the future at the same time by extending LuBob and Moncada. This team is going to be very good, for a very long time.
That doesn't include Madrigal or Andrew Vaughn who might just fuck around and be the best pure hitter in the lineup within the next few years. Yes, I mean that, and I think there's a real chance that he has a 2020 similar to Luis Robert's 2019 where Sox fans are clamoring for him to be called up. This season also has wildly different expectations than last, so maybe not. But people are finally starting to respect the White Sox, and it's honestly a strange feeling. I've been walking around campus and having people come up to me and talk to me about the White Sox because of a hoodie or hat I'm wearing. Indians, Royals, Cardinals and even the Cub fans who aren't delusional telling me I'm lucky. Well I'll be damned White Sox fans, we're all lucky because we get to see Yoan Moncada hitting second and manning third base until at least 2025 for $65 million (it's gonna be $90, but it doesn't matter). It's Rick Hahn's world and we're just living in it.
-The Inn Keeper