At least one projection sees the White Sox improving off their 99-loss 2013 season, though not to the point of playoff contention.
Clay Davenport unveiled an early 2014 projection over the weekend, and pegged the White Sox at 79-83. Now, that doesn't mean the White Sox will absolutely, certainly, definitely go 79-83 by Davenport's projections -- these are best viewed as the most likely outcome. Plenty of factors could cause a deviation, be it a significant injury, major breakthrough or key transaction.
For what it's worth, Davenport projected the White Sox at 76-86 in 2013 and 83-79 in 2012. He just about nailed 2012 (the Sox went 85-77), but whiffed by 13 games a year ago. But that can be chalked up to some rough injury luck and stunningly bad baserunning and defense -- the kind of stuff that's hard to project.
But if the Sox baseline is 79-83, that's not bad for where the team is at. With a few things breaking their way (like a few young players exceeding expectations) that could very well lead to playoff contention.
On the flip side, if a few things don't go the Sox way, that could lead to another disappointing season, at least record-wise.