GLENDALE, Ariz. (CBS) — As Rick Hahn said Wednesday, White Sox fans have paid dues their past few years.
And now is the time for it to start paying off.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Overnight Storm Threat
Wednesday was day one of spring training at Camelback Ranch. It was the first workout for pitchers and catchers with most of the roster already here and ready to go.
And that is the first thing to notice — all the big names out here, from Dallas Keuchel, to Yasmani Grandal and returning guys like Tim Anderson and Yoan Moncada. There’s even Michael Kopech who’s throwing with no restrictions coming off Tommy John surgery.READ MORE: 4 People Injured In Crash At 79th Street, Stony Island Avenue, South Chicago Avenue
Put it all together and this is a team not only dealing with high expectations, but embracing them.
“You’re not scared. You live for this, you dream for an opportunity to compete for a world series. This is what you set your sights on. The moves that were made in the offseason, it’s win now and it’s not just get to the playoffs. It’s win a world series,” says catcher James McCann.
“We want to play to win. We want to play to put ourselves in the position to have a chance to get to the dance. The pressure I have? ‘Gosh, I have more guys that I can use in the lineup. Gosh, even more guys that I can make two or three different lineups on any given day.’ No, that’s not pressure, that’s actually thank you. At the end of the day we know the players have to perform. We’re in a much better place than we have been in a while,” said manager Rick Renteria.MORE NEWS: Boat Flies Off Fox River And Catches Fire In Backyard, Leaving Operator Dead
The Sox did have a couple minor injuries pop up. Yasmani Grandal’s left calf, Lucas Giolito’s rib cage, and Gio Gonzalez’s shoulder. Hahn says all three will probably miss the first week or so of Spring Training games, but he expects them all to be fine for the regular season.