While scrolling through the ‘ol Twitter timeline, I saw a link to the the 2021 PECOTA projections for this upcoming baseball season and decided to see how the potential World Series contending White Sox were projected out in their division. I was shocked to say the least.
PECOTA has them slated to finish 3rd in the division with 83.1 wins behind the Twins (90.6 wins) and the Indians (85.7 wins)! An argument can surely be made for the Twins since they’ve been running the division for the last couple years, but the Indians? Seriously? The same team that traded Lindor and Carrasco to the Mets a few weeks ago? The same team that traded Mike Clevinger last season to the Padres? The same team that is kinda in re-build mode now? The White Sox should be competing with the Twins to win this division, not finished 3rd.
In the shortened season last year, the Sox and Indians finished with the same record. I get that the Sox struggled with the Indians last year and only won 2 out of 10 games, but since then, these teams have gone in completely different directions.
Without going into every single transaction here the White Sox have…
A Cy Young candidate in Lance Lynn
The best closer in baseball in Liam Hendriks
James McCann (but wait, they still have Yasmani Grandal)
Alex Colome (but wait, he was replaced by Liam Hendriks)
The Indians have…
No one of value
Fancisco Lindor (one of the best players in baseball)
Don’t forget that the White Sox are also getting back Michael Kopech (who can hopefully get back to his form that earned him top prospect rankings). Abreu is coming off an MVP season, Luis Robert finished second in Rookie of the Year voting, and Lucas Giolito and Dallas Keuchel finished as Cy Young contenders. I don’t how the system came up with this projection and what’s weighing heavily on these projections, but they definitely seem off. I mean the White Sox are in the Top 5 in odds for most odds makers to WIN the World Series. What the hell does PECOTA know that time-traveling odds makers don’t?
I know PECOTA projections are always just something for people to yell about and get angry at each year, so we’ll go with the flow and do just that here, but let’s see how these change as the season gets closer. Spring Training is coming up quick!
Also, side note… Good news for the Northsiders when it comes to bragging rights… Cubs are projected to have more wins than the White Sox in these rankings… it never ends…