Welcome to South Side Hit Pen!
Welcome, welcome, welcome, everybody, we’re South Side Hit Pen! As we’re prepping an onslaught of coverage here in our debut week, there’s just time for a quick recap of how we made it here to Sports Illustrated.
We've hopped around a bit in the past year, starting at SB Nation's South Side Sox, budget cuts there forcing an aborted merger with another White Sox site and the eventual building of our own new digs at South Side Hit Pen on WordPress. And lo and behold, some eight months later, we've landed here at Sports Illustrated, to provide you the very best and most entertaining White Sox coverage around.
You'll see a few changes from past incarnations. Mostly, these spiffy new digs ... whoa. We'll be running a lot more video — story summaries, web chats, prospect footage, photo slideshows. And once games begin again, we'll also have a press row presence for home game coverage, giving you an unmatched snapshot of the White Sox both on and off the diamond.
But what won't change is the talented and diverse collection of voices we built at South Side Sox and carried to South Side Hit Pen on WordPress, because everyone is making the move with me to Sports Illustrated to continue their coverage.
And our staff is talented beyond measure. Over the next few weeks, we'll be rolling and re-rolling out our Meet the Players feature, so readers new and returning can get acquainted with everyone who will be writing for you.
As for content beyond the video element, expect much if not all of what we have been running for the past couple of years to remain the same: daily game coverage, Six Pack of Stats, Minor League Update, Know Your Enemy will be in-season staples. Offseason, you'll see our Top 100 Prospects, reader prospect vote, Deep Dive, Hall of Fame voting, and more.
So essentially, everything you’ve become accustomed to reading at South Side Sox, and then our WordPress South Side Hit Pen, you’ll now find here with us at Sports Illustrated.
In the near-term, we'll have some treats for you while we're all waiting for baseball to return:
- We're continuing our simulated 2020 season via Out of the Park Baseball. The White Sox got off to a 7-5 start, residing in first place. With the move of our sim to Sports Illustrated, you'll see different SSHP recapping the games, as they would have in the regular season.
- Our 2020 Top 100 Prospects countdown will resume after a pause. Jacob Lindgren, No. 44, is next up.
- Mark Liptak's Today in White Sox baseball.
- Features on Chicago's Cuban pipeline, SportsVision, White Sox family connections, and social distancing.
- Q&As with Ron Kittle, Bart Johnson, and others.
- The South Side Literary Supplement, featuring our favorite critic, Phil Hundley.
- and much, much more!
As always, our biggest appreciation isn't saved for any individual writers, stories or ideas — not even for the White Sox themselves. It's you, our readers. We don't exist without you. As a reader here, we hope you feel welcomed and entertained — and comfortable enough to hop into our discussions. Tell us, good or bad, what you thought of a story or a new department. Share your memories of a momentous event in White Sox history. It's all here for you, very robust community options that allow you to be part of the story here at South Side Hit Pen.
Joining the community and commenting at South Side Hit Pen is easy to accomplish: Simply click the "Follow" button up in the top-right corner of this page.
We also offer a special $9 membership to this site, which entitles you premium access to South Side Hit Pen (ad-free reading and watching, exclusive chat room), a print subscription to Sports Illustrated, and access to every issue of Sports Illustrated ever published (via the SI Vault).
Patreon support is something that helped sustain our staff over the past eight months, and is absolutely appreciated. All of you who have supported us are our heroes, and a few of you super-supporters, wow, you're forever Patron Saints of South Side Hit Pen.
But with our new Sports Illustrated relationship, we will be dissolving the Patreon and inviting you to support us directly by subscribing to Sports Illustrated and our site.
As a bonus perk, our baseball simulation called the Armour Square Park League — created as a unique way to reward our supporters — will continue here at Sports Illustrated. We have five squads already, made up of South Side Hit Pen writers and supporters, and will be adding at least one more in the future. Your purchase of a subscription to our site here makes you eligible to participate in our sim, so sign up and give it a shot!
We are nearly two dozen episodes deep into our relaunched podcast, and frankly I'm not sure if it will continue or be supplanted by something new here at SI.
We’ve got a Twitter handle, @SouthSideHitPen, although the sassiest takes and occasional street fights with north side fans will come from the @BrettBallantini Twitter handle and other individual writer accounts.
As always, thanks to each and every one of you who have made our time writing about the White Sox for you a true delight. We promise to continue to surprise and delight you with our coverage.