DETROIT -- The White Sox solid 20-game start to the 2017 season should be considered a family affair as much as a strong team effort."We feel like family. That's the most important thing," White Sox starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez said. "We try to keep it loose in the clubhouse, in
DETROIT -- The White Sox solid 20-game start to the 2017 season should be considered a family affair as much as a strong team effort.
"We feel like family. That's the most important thing," White Sox starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez said. "We try to keep it loose in the clubhouse, in our trips. You see it. It's fun to be around all these guys. It's a good group."
Fun or not, this family still will be missing a few members by the start of August. This organization remains in a rebuild, and these great early individual starts actually might enhance the value of some of these veteran trade candidates.
Take Gonzalez, for example. The right-hander has relied on throwing more strikes and has used his sinker more frequently, keeping the White Sox defense busy, as opposed to being more reliant on the four-seamer in the past. That combination adds up to a 3-0 record with a 2.00 ERA over 27 innings and four starts.
Those numbers could be meaningful to a team deemed as a major postseason player for the free-agent-to-be after this campaign. But the players speculated as available, whether it's Gonzalez, Player Page for David Robertson or Melky Cabrera, to name a few, don't concern themselves with what the front office might or might not do.
"We just try to go out there and do our job every time. This is what we do, this is our life," Gonzalez said. "Everyone here has some opportunity to make this team better. It has been showing."
"They're more focused on playing the game of baseball," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "There's enough to concern yourself with, facing the guys they're facing, making sure they're playing the game the way they're supposed to rather than thinking about who we are or who we are not. That will be determined when it's all said and done."
There's plenty of baseball left to decide the state of this White Sox team. Friday marked the start of a 10-game road trip for the White Sox, followed by six games at home and then another 10-game road trip to the West Coast.
General manager Rick Hahn has acknowledged plans could be slightly altered if this group shows it can challenge for the postseason. Hahn also has talked about the organization being at the start of this rebuild and assembling that critical mass, meaning acquiring more young talent through the Draft, internationally and in trades.
It's up to this family of players to continue to play well together and prove the many doubters wrong.
"Hopefully we can open some eyes out there," Gonzalez said. "And hopefully people start talking about us a little bit more. If not, we are going to keep grinding and keep playing the game that we love. We are the underdogs. We like to be that way."
Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.