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Approach helping offense get out of the gates strong

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DETROIT -- The 16 runs scored by the White Sox in Sunday's victory over the Rangers ended a stretch of five games where the South Siders scored just 10 runs. Yet, the reshaped and rejuvenated offense continues to thrive.

Going into Monday's series opener against the Tigers, the White Sox topped the Majors with 5.58 runs per game. They stand first in the American League with a .759 OPS and second in average (.268), slugging percentage (.425), home runs (23) and on-base percentage (.334).

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By comparison, the White Sox ranked last in the AL last season in runs scored, 14th in on-base percentage and 13th in slugging percentage. New hitting coach Todd Steverson's message of selective aggressiveness clearly is taking hold.

"I feel like he helps a lot," said White Sox right fielder Dayan Viciedo, through interpreter and White Sox manager of cultural development Lino Diaz. "He also definitely connects with us and he likes to talk about the hitting part of it, which is very helpful for us to talk about things. He's definitely doing a good job."

"You add [Adam] Eaton and [Jose] Abreu in there, and [Marcus] Semien has been here since the start," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "A lot of guys are deeper into counts than they were last year. We still have some free swingers that swing early, but for the most part, you're grinding out at-bats. Just tougher at-bats, and I think that leads to some walks in some key spots and some bigger hits."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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