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Eaton's fast start pacing White Sox offense

CHICAGO -- Adam Eaton downplays the depiction of being the most exciting player in Major League Baseball, which he was anointed by teammate Chris Sale during Friday's postgame.

But while that compliment comes with a little South Side bias, there's absolutely no denying the huge effect the hard-nosed leadoff man has already had on the 2014 White Sox offense.

"He has never once taken a second off, taken a step back," said Sale of Eaton.

"I would say we're all biased, but he brings a certain element that is exciting," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura of Eaton. "It's fun to watch. It's fun to see him hit a baseball and run. If we could all run that fast, run that way, we probably would. You just feel lucky he's on your team. I think guys feed off it somewhat, just his energy that he brings."

While Alexei Ramirez (.413 average, 1.090 OPS) and Tyler Flowers (.419, 1.003) have provided the White Sox balance from the eighth and ninth slots, Eaton and Jose Abreu have made the biggest impact. Eaton finished Saturday afternoon's 12-6 loss to the Indians as the American League leader with 14 runs scored, having reached base 16 times in the last five games and as the owner of five straight multihit efforts.

Eaton's energy and attitude seem to be as important to the White Sox cause as his significant early production.

"There's good energy and positive energy," said Ramirez, through translator and White Sox manager of cultural development Lino Diaz. "I'm going to mention Adam Eaton. He's always on base, he's fast, he takes the extra base and brings extra energy."

"Continue to compete. That's all we can do," Eaton said. "When you throw the best out there every single pitch, let the cards fall where they may."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin.
Read More: Cleveland Indians, Chicago White Sox