Everyone one knows that Adam Dunn and Alex Rios had historical bad seasons last year for the Chicago White Sox. Well 2012 is starting off on the right foot for both of them. If the White Sox want to keep up and contend with the Detroit Tigers in the division, they will need these two to produce throughout the season.
Let’s start with Alex Rios, who has a slash line of .333/.396/.511 for an OPS of .907. He has 3 doubles, 1 triple, 1 home run and 7 RBI. He has 4 walks and just 6 strike outs. He has played a much better defense in right field than he played center field in 2011. The biggest difference is that Rios isn’t trying to pull everything for a home run, he is driving the ball to right and right center field. Obviously, nobody expects Rios to continue with these numbers, but if he can end with something around .285/.355/.440 for an OPS of .815, that would give the White Sox a great chance to be in contention.
Adam Dunn was even worse than Rios last year. But Dunn has looked like he has turned things around with the help of new hitting coach Jeff Manto. He could still do better but it is good to see him making adjustments and hitting the ball to all fields. Dunn is top 10 in RBI with 13 to go with 6 doubles and 3 home runs. It is known that Dunn will strike out 180 times and walk 100 and he is on his way to both of those numbers. He already has 24 strike outs and 9 walks. His slash line reads .246/.348/.509 for an OPS of .857.
The Chicago White Sox need both of these guys to produce at much better levels than last year to go with guys like Paul Konerko, AJ Pierzynski and Alexei Ramirez for the White Sox to have a chance to compete with the best in the AL.