Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 11/18/14

The 2012 season for the Chicago White Sox to this point has been full of surprises.

Whether it be the performances of Adam Dunn, Paul Konerko, AJ Pierzynski, Chris Sale, Jake Peavy or the entire bullpen, many players on the Sox roster are exceeding expectations.

However, the man who has been the most surprising and impressive thus far for the White Sox may not even be the one playing.

It’’s the one calling the shots: Robin Ventura.

Robin Ventura's first two months as White Sox manager have gone as well as anyone could have hoped. (Image via Art of the Pale Hose)

 

Last season, the White Sox were a team that often appeared to have no signs of life whenever they took the field.

It seemed as if whenever the opposition took a lead, no matter how early in the game, their fate was sealed. Likewise, whenever a lead was blown by the bullpen, there was no fight to change the momentum back.

With pretty much the same roster as last season aside from a few pieces, Ventura has totally changed the mindset of this ball club. From the first pitch to the last, this team appears to bring the energy and fight every single game.

During their nine-game win streak alone, they scored six times in the first inning and trailed in four of them. Even in yesterday’s loss, they came from behind to tie or take the lead at four different points in the game.

This is the kind of fight that the White Sox did not have in the last two or three seasons under Ozzie Guillen, and a lot of credit has to go to Ventura for changing the culture of that clubhouse.

In fact, these players are now going the extra mile to protect each other. How many times over the past three years (especially against good opponents) did we see White Sox batters get hit and retaliation was never in order? Now, it’’s happening every time someone is plunked. That sends more than just a message to the team on that day; it sends a message to the entire league: one that says “we aren’t afraid of anybody.”

On top of that, he has the White Sox just playing a more fundamentally sound game.

When every new manager is hired, they most certainly use the cliché ,“”We are going to go back to working on the fundamentals”.” It’’s one thing to use the cliché; it’s another to go out and actually do it. Robin has, and the play of this team has shown that.

Hawk Harrelson says a lot of things not worth listening to, but he’’s absolutely right when he says the White Sox have not overthrown a cutoff man this season. That, along with situational hitting and outfield defense as a whole, is miles ahead of where it was last season.

In 2005, the White Sox promoted “grinder baseball” and the idea of “”win or die trying”.” In the last three seasons of Ozzie Guillen’’s tenure, that whole concept seemed to be lost. Now, however, that edge the White Sox have lacked looks to be alive and well once again.

It’’s one thing to get a baseball team to play well. However, changing the entire culture within two months is something totally different.

For someone do to that within first 53 games he’s ever managed, I’d call that a pretty big surprise.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Metta World Peace expresses interest to coach St John's

Knicks want Marc Gasol, do they know what they’re asking for?

New York Rangers are the first team to clinch a playoff spot

Victorino: I plan on playing every day for Red Sox in 2015

The Rams are still planning on drafting a quarterback

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Howard willing to make 'ultimate sacrifice' to help Rockets

Pacquiao bought P. Diddy’s house for $12.5M, fight tickets

The Seahawks are already winning the NFL Draft

Fiancée takes stand at Aaron Hernandez's murder trial

Thunder announce Kevin Durant to miss rest of season

Jeremy Maclin says he still believes in Chip Kelly

WATCH: 2 Chainz beats Dominique Wilkins in HORSE

Angels remove Josh Hamilton banner from front of stadium

Elite Eight preview: Arizona vs. Wisconsin

Support for relocation growing among NFL powers

Mother says special needs son forced to remove varsity letter

NFL owners chose cost over game integrity

Minnesota Timberwolves: Should they tank?

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

Twins to offer $19 Bloody Mary with pizza slice garnish

Ranking the NBA's hottest coaching seats

The beginning of the end for Notre Dame

An identity in flux: Harden and the collective consciousness

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: 2 Chainz beats Nique in HORSE

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Notre Dame vs. Kentucky

Elite Eight preview and predictions: Arizona vs. Wisconsin

NFL owners chose cost over game integrity

Be careful how loudly you cheer on Mo'ne Davis' olive branch

James Harden and the collective consciousness

Hottest coaching seats in NBA

Under-the-radar NL MVP candidates

Notre Dame’s coach makes first Elite Eight

The last Expo standing

Five under-the-radar AL MVP candidates

Michigan sent recruit's GF a letter

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.