GLENDALE, Ariz. — The White Sox have a bunch of new faces, but Conor Gillaspie wouldn’t change anything at shortstop.
Gillaspie believes Ramirez is far better than the numbers he posted in 2013 when he committed a career-high 22 errors at shortstop. The White Sox went from the team that committed the fewest errors in the majors in 2012 to the second-most last season, an increase of 51.
The team’s shoddy defense was one of many factors that contributed to the fourth-most losses in franchise history. Ramirez received a significant amount of criticism for his defensive play but Gillaspie thinks the veteran — as well as the team — will rebound this season with a fresh start.
“I would put Alexei out there before I’d put any other,” Gillaspie said. “There are very few shortstops who do what he does. Obviously he made some mistakes, and so did I on the left side. But it’s so funny because so many people criticize the way we played last year, and it was frustrating. It was frustrating for everybody. I was frustrated. The coaching staff was frustrated. Everybody was frustrated. … Alexei is going to have a great year, and I think a lot of these guys are going to have a great year. What happened last year was a positive for us. It’s over now, and you have to think that way.”