Entering game two of the four-game set against the Toronto Blue Jays, the White Sox look decent as of late, winning four out of their last five ballgames. A lot of the success has been due to timely hitting, with little to none of it coming from the bat of Yonder Alonso.
Coming into this season, I had high hopes for Alonso. I thought that he would provide a solid left-handed bat that this team so desperately needed. I, like many others who thought this move had potential beyond the connection to Manny Machado, thought he would be the perfect bridge between the top and the bottom of the order.
So far, I couldn’t be more wrong.
In the 33 games that he has hit cleanup, he’s hitting an unimpressive .176 with a low .580 OPS. I guess you could say he’s still the bridge between the top and bottom of the order since that’s where he’s been hitting, but its a bridge without much hope of reaching the other side. One that I’m becoming very tired of.
Now I’m not saying that there isn’t hope for him being able to turn it around. When the weather heats up at Guaranteed Rate Field, no pitch is safe from leaving the yard. One thing to note is that with the emergence of the rest of the White Sox lineup, Yonder may also wind up getting better pitches to hit as pitchers may choose to attack him while working around other hitters.
If this lackluster hitting continues much longer, I would hope that sooner rather than later he gets booted from the cleanup spot or even has some of his at-bats go to Matt Skole. Yes, I know that he is knocking on the door of turning 29 without much time spent at all in the majors. Just remember that in the Cleveland series last season, he absolutely tore the cover off of the ball and is continuing to do so this season at AAA with 12 homers to go along with a 1.071 OPS in 32 games. I don’t think that we’d get anything less out of him than what we are currently getting from Yonder Alonso, who figures to not be on the White Sox next season.
The minor league boys are doing what they can to earn a promotion, and it’s up to Yonder to either buck up or get out of the way. I hope that he can turn things around, but if not, I think its time for “Chaw” (my own loving nickname for him) Skole to get his chance to mash.
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