White Sox general manager Ken Williams echoed manager Ozzie Guillen's and pitcher Jake Peavy's recent call for better fundamental baseball before the Sox faced the Cubs to open a tree-game series at U.S. Cellular Field on Monday night.
"Listen, if you are going to play championship baseball you have to be fundamentally sound,'' Williams said. "You have to catch the ball, you have to execute. The double plays, the pickoff plays ... the running game has to be slowed certainly to a greater degree. We have to get runners in with less than two outs at a greater clip.''
The Sox showed signs of playing better when they won two of three from the Diamondbacks in Arizona over the weekend. They scored runners from third with ground ball outs, held the D-backs running game in check for the most part after the Twins stole five bases in one game last week, and had timely hits.
"There are a number of things,'' Williams said.
Overall, Williams said he has been pleased with Sox pitching.
"The starting pitching has been sound, the bullpen has had a blip here and there but there are not a lot of bullpens I would take ours,'' Williams said.
Offensively, the Sox problems are much more than Alex Rios and Adam Dunn having sub-par years. That's part of it, but it goes back to the basics, Williams said.
"When you're fighting tooth and nail for every ballgame, those things become very glaring,'' Williams said.