The All Illinois Team

It is a slow week here at Sox Sided Headquarters since our dear friends Manny and Bryce have decided to wait until the New Year to make their decisions. Rick Hahn and White Sox Nation have done everything they could to encourage those future Hall of Famers to set up camp at 35th and Shields. So now our only option is, well we just have wait.

Waiting we shall, just as Tom petty once sang, “The waiting is the hardest part.” Boy was he right, especially after the last two weeks, so many highs and so many lows for us White Sox fans. The one thing that comes to mind, is The Office, “Dinner Party,” episode where Michael Scott explains to indecisive girlfriend Jan, about whether they want to have children or not. So as the scene progresses, in front of their guests Michael goes on to explain the trauma of the amount of vasectomies and reverse vasectomies he has undergone. “Snip, snap, Snip, snap, Snip, snap, do you have no idea the physical toll that three vasectomies have on a person.” Haha Cinematic genius, for those of you who are Office fans you can understand the correlation. Just as soon as us sox fans had received a feel-good leak or positive Sox/Harper/Machado story, we were brought back to earth with a conflicting report of them signing elsewhere.

So for the sake of all our sanity, I went in another direction with this article and I just want to spotlight our state’s athletic talent. I scanned the Baseball Almanac online and tried to put together a full team of all active MLB players who have a connection to our state. Born/raised/graduated from the Land of Lincoln. What I found is interesting.

Us red meat eating, corn-fed Midwestern lads know how to make a pitch dance. Our hitting though? EHHH, our hitting is a bit suspect, but hell we’re working on it. We will leave the hitting to the Florida, Texas and Cali boys and beat every state 1-0. So, here’s what we got:


Position Name Team Illinois City Notoriety
Starting Pitcher Jake Odorizzi (28) Minnesota Twins Breese, IL 6 MLB Seasons


4.89 ERA- 802K

Starting Pitcher Tanner Roark (32) Cincinnati Reds Wilmington, IL 6 MLB Seasons


3.59 ERA-732K

Starting Pitcher Jacob Junis (26) Kansas City Royals Sterling, IL 2 MLB Seasons


4.38 ERA-238K

Starting Pitcher Michael Foltynewicz (27) Atlanta Braves Minooka, IL 3 MLB Seasons



Starting Pitcher Ryan Borucki (24) Toronto Blue Jays Mundelein, IL 1 MLB Season



Relief Pitcher Luke Gregerson (34) St. Louis Cardinals Park Ridge, IL 10 MLB Seasons



Relief Pitcher TJ McFarland (30) AZ Diamondbacks Palos Hills, IL 5 MLB Seasons



Relief Pitcher Tony Cingrani (30) LA Dodgers New Lenox 6 MLB Seasons





Position Name Team Illinois City Notoriety
Catcher Danny Jensen (23) Toronto Blue Jays Elmhurst, IL 2018 All Star Futures Game, 65th best prospect in MLB
First Base James Adduci (33) Chicago Cubs (Minors) Evergreen Park, IL 4 MLB Seasons .235Avg, 35HR, 147 RBI
Second Base Jason Kipnis (31) Cleveland Indians Northbrook, IL 8 MLB Seasons

2x All-Star

Short Stop Ben Zobrist (37) Chicago Cubs Eureka, IL 13 MLB Seasons

3x All Star

2x World Series Champ

Third Base Vacant Vacant Vacant Vacant
Outfield Curtis Granderson (37) Free Agent Blue Island, IL 15 MLB Seasons

3x All-Star

1 Silver Slugger

1 RBI Leader

Outfield Charlie Tilson (26) Chicago White Sox Winnetka, IL 2 MLB Seasons

.277AVG-10 RBI

Outfield Jake Smolinski (29) Tampa Bay Rays (minors) Rockford, IL 4 MLB Seasons

.235AVG -16 HR-67 RBI

Designated Hitter Sam Travis (25) Boston Redsox New Lenox .248-1HR-8 RBI


In conclusion, Illinois has a pretty good track record with pitching. At least we are doing that right as a state, but it wouldn’t hurt to send our young hitters to the cages a bit more. We could use a few more batting practice sessions.

Signing out from Sox Sided headquarters. Sox Sided wishes all our followers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year (Bryce Harper and Manny can help with the Happy New Years) Cheers to you and please Santa let all Cubs fans get coal.

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