During spring training Paul Konerko raised some eyebrows when he commented that the White Sox could have a successful season even if they didn't make the playoffs. Many considered the Captain's comments as being a concession, but he was just being honest and in my opinion very insightful.
Sox fans have every reason to believe the 2012 club will hang on and win the A.L. Central or at the very least capture a wild card spot. But the truth is, it's no guarantee. The overwhelming preseason favorite Tigers are coming on strong and after last night find themselves just 1 1/2 games in back of the South Siders.
What if the Sox don't make the postseason? Of course we would be disappointed. But after the disaster of 2011, just look at what an enjoyable summer it has been:
--A long stretch in first place, something unimaginable during the spring.
--Our rookie manager has confounded the skeptics, changed the culture of the Sox clubhouse and the way the club approaches fundamentals.
--Terrific in-season acquisitions Kevin Youkilis, Brett Myers, Francisco Liriano and Dewayne Wise.
--The Baby Bunch of Chris Sale, Jose Quintana, Addison Reed, Nate Jones, et. al.
--The comebacks of Adam Dunn, Jake Peavy and Alex Rios.
There's more, but you get the point.
It's interesting to me that Konerko made his comment on the 40th anniversary of the 1972 Sox, who revitalized the franchise and the city with an exceptional season. And here we are four decades later recognizing a second place team that didn't make the postseason with celebrations and the donning of the '70s red pinstriped uniforms every home Sunday.
Like the Captain, I'm making no concessions. I want to win the division badly and feel that we have a great chance to do it. But if the baseball gods determine that a division title and a postseason appearance aren't in the cards, so be it. It's still been a fun summer with a lot to look forward to. In many ways, like 1972.