Today, Ozzie Guillen made some comments about Tim Anderson’s fielding ability, saying he is unsure whether or not Tim can succeed at Shortstop.

Ozzie does have a point. Tim Anderson has struggled and has not been the defensive presence Sox fans thought he would be, but it’s still not to late to turn it around. As of today, Tim ranks first in the MLB in errors committed by the shortstop with 10. And with a .954% fielding percentage, he is towards the bottom of the list of everyday shortstops.

Ozzie says Tim needs more experience, and what a better time than right now to get that experience. The White Sox aren’t going to win anything this year and it’s the perfect time to let him get his reps and learn from his mistakes. If you are an avid White Sox fan and you watch every game you see that Tim has the potential to become a defensive force at the shortstop position. Anderson can make the flashy plays but it seems like he commits errors on the routine plays by over thinking it.

Now, the man Ozzie related Tim Anderson too. Shawon Dunston. Here are some fielding stats from his first four years in the league with the Chicago Cubs.

Year Age Tm Pos Lg G GS CG Inn Ch PO A E DP Fld% Rtot Rtot/yr RF/9 RF/G lgFld% lgRF9 lgRFG Awards
1985 22 CHC SS NL 73 71 55 599.2 409 144 248 17 39 .958 0 0 5.88 5.37 .963 4.88 4.88
1986 23 CHC SS NL 149 148 137 1312.2 817 320 465 32 96 .961 -4 -3 5.38 5.27 .963 4.75 4.76
1987 24 CHC SS NL 94 92 81 805.0 445 160 271 14 54 .969 -5 -8 4.82 4.59 .965 4.72 4.69
1988 25 CHC SS NL 151 150 131 1288.2 732 257 455 20 76 .973 -6 -6 4.97 4.72 .967 4.63 4.64 AS

 

As you can see above, Dunston’s first three years in the league he struggled, committing a ton of errors and having a lackluster fielding percentage. Though through those first three years, his fielding percentage went up and he improved by earning himself an All-Star nod in 1988. The point is, the Cubs let the man play his game and he started to improve with time, and as Ozzie said experience.

Year Age Tm Pos Lg G GS CG Inn Ch PO A E DP Fld% Rtot Rdrs Rtot/yr Rdrs/yr RF/9 RF/G lgFld% lgRF9 lgRFG Awards
2016 23 CHW SS AL 98 97 96 859.2 400 142 244 14 50 .965 1 6 2 8 4.04 3.94 .976 4.17 4.13 RoY-7
2017 24 CHW SS AL 145 145 143 1264.0 588 197 363 28 85 .952 -13 -8 -12 -8 3.99 3.86 .975 4.09 4.04
2018 25 CHW SS AL 51 51 51 450.0 218 77 131 10 29 .954 -3 0 -8 0 4.16 4.08 .972 3.81 3.80

 

Above is Tim Anderson’s career numbers. Similar to Dunston, Tims numbers are improving this year, at least fielding percentage wise. Tim is currently on pace to have 24 errors which would be down from last year but still isn’t what he or any White Sox fans want.

The last topic to talk about is that Ozzie said Tim would be better in the outfield. Well, this just doesn’t make sense, especially if you want Tim Anderson to be with the team long-term. Down in the minors, the White Sox have elite outfielders waiting to be called up and prove their worth.

Just to name a few of them:

Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert, Blake Rutheford, Micker Adolfo, and Ryan Cordell.

Though Tim is having shortcomings on the defensive side of the ball, his bat is alive and better than ever.

2018 25 CHW AL 52 207 189 28 47 6 1 11 20 12 1 17 49 .249 .311 .466 .776 113 88 7 0 1 0 0 6

 

Tim is one of three MLB players to have double-digit home runs and stolen bases. The other two? Mookie Betts and Mike Trout. That is some elite company. Anderson is on pace for a 30HR-30SB year and 3.9 WAR.

The point is, the White Sox are rebuilding. There will be growing pains. Tim Anderson has the athleticism and the IQ to improve at shortstop. If Tim can improve on the defensive end like he has improved on the offensive end, this conversation won’t last long.