Looking Ahead to 2010’s Dashed Expectations

We all know by now that 2009 is a disaster, and that’s all well and good, except everything that’s wrong with the Sox right now is everything that informed last spring’s wildly psychotic expectations. Carlos Quentin, for example, would not get hurt. Jim Thome would not continue his decline into old age and diminished skills. Last season was just a down year for Jermaine Dye in the outfield. And on and on it went.

But with this season almost in the books and two of the biggest question marks (Thome and Jose Contreras) out of town, who will carry us just short of what little the team needs from then next year?

Alex Rios. Not that Rios will be terrible, but expect a smattering of weird local projections insisting he’ll put up another 30-homer, 100-RBI season even though he’s never put up a 30-homer, 100-RBI season. People seem to forget this about Rios, that while he’s pretty good he’s not quite franchise good. And yet they will. And so will he.

Gordon Beckham. There is no such thing as “a book,” and the league would never assemble such a thing on young Bacon Spice, even if one did exist. Do you want to know the real reason he’s closing the season on a 17-for-76 slump? Because he’s awesome, that’s why.

Alexei Ramirez. It’s kind of funny how Ramirez’ sloppy defense was entirely overlooked heading into the season as the Sox moved him over to short, and it will be even funnier after his disastrous time in center next year spelling the DFA’d Alex Rios.

Carlos Quentin. It’s sad to say, but if it weren’t for Alex Rios, DeWayne Wise, Brian Anderson, Brent Lillibridge and Jerry Owens, Quentin would be the worst outfielder the Sox have trotted out this season. Next season though, watch out because he will soooo not get hurt and he will totally not have already faced every pitching staff in the American League, which doesn’t matter anyway because there is no book. You think people have figured out White Sox hitters? I got news for you: no one has figured out White Sox hitters – not even White Sox hitters themselves! And this is how they will succeed! Just like this year!

Team of Destiny!