Three Burning Questions: American League Central 

As spring training begins to get underway, here are three burning questions for the American League Central.

Chicago White Sox

What will the veteran pitchers bring? The White Sox signed Dallas Keuchel and Gio Gonzalez back in December. They will help to round out the pitching staff. Luis Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez are coming off pretty good seasons in 2019. Carlos Rodon could return from Tommy John surgery, by midseason.

A pair of power bats? Chicago signed catcher Yasmani Grandal and Edwin Encarnacion which will add some much-needed pop to the lineup. They are rumored to be interested in Yasiel Puig.

Wasn’t this a no brainer? The one constant and consistent guy for the White Sox, Jose Abreu, was re-signed. The additions of Grandal and Encarnacion will have pitchers picking their poison.

Cleveland Indians

Outfield by committee? The acquired Delino Deshields, Jr. in the Corey Kluber trade adding to a bevy of average to above-average outfielders already on the roster.

Only a second baseman? The only move they made this offseason was signing the second baseman Cesar Hernandez, definitely not the biggest splash in the division.

Will they compete? This seems like a club that’s rebuilding. That was apparent the second they made the Kluber deal. They may have a tough go trying to duplicate last season.

Minnesota Twins

What did they win(other than this division a season ago)?
The Twins landed the biggest free agent non-pitcher available in the third baseman Josh Donaldson. He should help them offensively and defensively.

Enough bullpen help? One of the areas where the Twins struggled, if a 100-win team can struggle, last year was relief pitching. They added Tyler Clippard and Sergio Romo who at the very least could give quality depth.

DH or trade bait? Miguel Sano was given an extension before the signing of Donaldson. We’ll have to see if they can find a taker for him.

Detroit Tigers

Are they on the brink of a rebuild? Yet again, a season didn’t go as planned last year in Motown. After losing 114 games in 2019, by May we’ll see them fighting to stay out of the last place in the division.

Quality arm, big upside? Although it didn’t translate into wins Ivan Nova pitched many good quality innings for the White Sox last season. A veteran pitcher who doesn’t get rattled is always good to have.

Will age catch up to him? Miguel Cabrera is an aging veteran, who although he still has power, with not much around him, opposing pitchers don’t fear him like they once did.

Kansas City Royals

Nowhere to go, but up? After posting back-to-back 100-loss seasons, there can’t be anything but optimism among Royals fans, but it seems unlikely given the moves the Twins and White Sox made.

Who’ll be in the rotation? They lack depth at the most critical position, starting pitching. Since they didn’t address that in the winter they may just wing it.

Are they just competing with Detroit? Although they lost 103 games last season, they still had 12 more wins than the last-place Tigers. I see that being about right this season as well.

This division is Minnesota’s to lose. I think the White Sox added just enough to beat them out. Either way, both teams will make the playoffs which for fans on the Southside is long overdue.

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