On paper, the Chicago White Sox already have acquired enough talent to make some noise next season and start contending for the playoffs in 2019.
Developing all of the young talent is the next step, and the Sox are well aware that some of their premier prospects are not going to pan out.
They also are aware of the importance of being patient, and that already has come into play with shortstop Tim Anderson and second baseman Yoan Moncada.
Earlier in the season, Anderson was grieving over the loss of his best friend, Branden Moss, who was murdered. Anderson also was adjusting to wearing glasses and undoubtedly trying to live up to the six-year, $25 million contract he signed in spring training.
With a .240 batting average and 20 errors at the all-star break, the outside calls for demoting Anderson to Class AAA Charlotte intensified.
The White Sox held their ground.
In late July, general manager Rick Hahn was asked about sending Anderson to the minor leagues.
"I don't think that's going to accomplish much at this time," Hahn said. "Everything he's had to deal with, both with the league adjusting to him and the off-the-field issues that he's had to endure, has made it a tough year for him.
"But the talent is still there. We still think he's going to continue to improve each year with more and more repetition, and we very much view him as being an important part of our future."
Even at his lowest point this season, Anderson never stopped believing in his ability to play baseball.
The confidence has paid off, and Anderson was batting .447 while riding a 10-game hitting streak heading into Wednesday night's game at Houston. He also had just 1 error in 26 games after making 25 fielding miscues in his first 108.
With Moncada, the outside calls wondered why he was brought up from Charlotte in the first place.
Rated by Baseball America as the best player in the minor leagues, Moncada joined the Sox on June 19.
The 22-year-old second baseman was overmatched by a steady diet of major-league breaking balls, and Moncada's batting average stood at .179 on Sept. 9.
The White Sox again held their ground, and an eight-game hitting streak heading into Wednesday lifted Moncada's average to .241.
Like Anderson, Moncada is learning to hit off-speed pitches at baseball's highest level. Both players took their lumps and are now reaping the benefits.
"You have guys that are learning how to do this at the major-league level with some of the best breaking balls and some of the best changeups, sliders, whatever the case might be," manager Rick Renteria said. "So we have to understand where they're at in terms of their development. We also have to understand patience with that."