Sox Inbox Q&a: Part Ii

Cleveland and Chicago had an odd year against each other. The Tribe won five of the first six while the White Sox won five of the last six. In between, the Indians and White Sox split six games for a 9-9 season series.

The batting order starts with center fielder and speedster Juan Pierre who scored 96 runs in 2010. White Sox fans hope that second baseman Gordon Beckham will improve on his first two years in the majors. The talent is certainly there for Beckham to improve on last years . 252 avg., 9 home runs, 49 RBI line. Right fielder Alex Rios had a solid year last season, hitting . 284 with 21 homeruns, 88 runs batted in and 34 stolen bases.

On the actual playing field, Rodriguez had just one hit for the third straight game, making him 3-for-11 in the series with the Chicago sale jerseys. As for the rest of the Yankees, they lost their chance to salvage a win in Chicago, as a Mariano Rivera blown save led to a 6-5 12 inning loss.

He’s on the 40-man roster and is a slightly-lesser version of Lucas Harrell without the major-league experience. Marquez, touted as a groundball phenom when acquired from the Yankees in the Nick Swisher [REDACTED] trade, had a 46 percent ground ball rate in Charlotte-good, but not Harrell’s 52 percent grounder rate. He’ll have a shot at the rotation this spring, but it’s tough to see Marquez separating himself from the pack. Then again, that can be said for all these pitchers.

Today’s observations are partly rather personal and partly just watching the scene around me. As usual I was on the left field berm under the scoreboard (under the clock, to be specific). I saw many friends I haven’t seen since last year at Spring Training, so it was great to see them again. Some of these friends are from the Phoenix area, some from Iowa and some even from Connecticut, to name a few. I also saw a few friends from the bleachers at Wrigley. Condolences were conveyed to me by my Chicago friends who, knew about my father’s passing the morning after the second playoff game loss in October.

Cleveland ended the season 31-50 on the road on the way to its 69-93 season. The Indians had winning records on Thursday (10-9), Friday (13-12) and Saturday (15-12). The most cruel to the Tribe was Wednesday (7-19).

Those same fans see instant replay as more of a nuisance than good. Once instant replay is used by Major League Baseball for one set of calls then when will it end? Will replay be used only on close plays at the plate or determining if a ball was actually fair or foul? What if, in the bottom of the ninth of a close game, a pitch is called a ball that appeared to be a strike? Will that be reviewed?