His defense has certainly been suspect at times this season, and his overall power numbers have also taken a hit. However, Alexei Ramirez has become the Chicago White Sox’ spark plug in the second half.
Posting a .298/.316/.427 slash line since the All-Star break, and almost doubling his RBI total from the first half, Ramirez has been Chicago’s top run producer. With the recent departure of outfielder Alex Rios, the veteran shortstop has taken over the role as the Sox’ number three hitter — a spot in which he’s thriving in so far. Since being moved to the three hole on Aug. 9, Ramirez has three homeruns, 11 RBI and six runs scored.
Not only has Ramirez lead the White Sox’ offense lately, he’s arguably been the top hitting shortstop in the MLB. His 19 RBI since the break have paced all shortstops, and has also collected the fourth most hits in the American League in the second half of the season.
With his name rumored as a possible trade candidate just a few weeks ago, it appeared that Ramirez could be on his way out of the South Side, at or near the Jul. 31 non-waiver trade deadline. GM Rick Hahn decided to hang on to his shortstop, however; at this point, that looks like the correct move.
There’s no arguing his AL-leading 20 errors have hurt the Sox on multiple occasions this year, and his lack of run production in the first half is a big reason the Pale Hose are sitting in the bottom of the AL Central. But as the Sox begin to reshape their ball club and build for the future, Ramirez has the ability and talent to remain a staple in Chicago for years to come.