In this edition of White Sox Minor League News and Notes, Nicky Delmonico had quite the week for Charlotte, Luis Robert is declared a free agent by Major League Baseball, and we'll introduce you to Charlotte Knights pitching coach Steve McCatty, in addition to getting you caught up on the happenings, news, notes and transactions regarding the White Sox minor leaguers and affiliates.
White Sox Injuries Mean Charlotte Reinforcements
Mike Pelfrey was the latest Knight to head north to the White Sox due to injury at the big league level, as he filled in for the injured starter James Shields on Saturday. Pelfrey became the fourth Charlotte player called up so far this young season. Tommy Kahnle was the first of the reinforcements, as he was recalled prior to the Knights' opening day due to an injury to Jake Petricka.
Kevan Smith (Geovany Soto injury) and Willy Garcia (Melky Cabrera paternity leave) have already made their way back to Charlotte following brief stints with the White Sox. Zach Putnam left Saturday's game due to a tender elbow and currently is day-to-day for the White Sox. If he doesn't bounce back quickly, another Charlotte player may be soon headed to Chicago.
Minor League Staff Profile
The man charged with putting the finishing touches on Charlotte top pitching prospects Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez, Carson Fulmer and Zack Burdi is new Knights pitching coach Steve McCatty. McCatty, who spent nine seasons in the major leagues with Oakland, brings a wealth of pitching knowledge to Charlotte.
The former Cy Young runner-up in 1981 spent last season as the pitching coach for Class A Lake County in the Cleveland organization, but his best coaching work was done over the previous nine seasons when he served as a pitching coach in the Washington organization, first with Triple-A Syracuse (2006-2009) and then with the big league Nationals (2009-2015) where he oversaw the development of standouts Jordan Zimmerman, Stephen Strasburg, Max Scherzer, Tanner Roark, Gio Gonzalez and Joe Ross.
McCatty is familiar with current Charlotte hurlers Lopez and Giolito, who both came over from the Washington system as part of the Adam Eaton trade. His role is crucial to the future success of the White Sox, as these four are being counted on to assume roles at the big league level within the next year with the expected departures of veterans such as James Shields, Miguel Gonzalez and David Robertson by next season.
- White Sox optioned OF Willy Garcia and C Kevan Smith to Charlotte
- Disabled C Chris O'Dowd
- White Sox selected the contract of RHP Mike Pelfrey from Charlotte
- Activated LHP Brian Clark from disabled list
- Re-signed OF Landon Lassiter, who had been released by the White Sox just a month ago, and assigned him to the Dash
- Disabled CF Alex Call
- No transactions
- Released 1B Kevin Davidson, younger brother of Matt Davidson. Kevin had been in Extended Spring Training and was not assigned to a full season club.
For the Record
- 3B Delmonico is 10 for his last 18 (.555) over the past week (4/18-4/23) raising his average from .233 up to .328. Delmonico must like the home cooking in Charlotte as he is hitting .471 at home versus .148 on the road.
- Delmonico and 2B Yoan Moncada are tied for second in the International League for runs scored (13). Delmonico also ranks tied for second in the IL in hits (20), while Moncada ranks tied for fourth (18).
- Delmonico and 1B Danny Hayes are tied for third in the IL in doubles (5). Moncada is tied for second in IL in home runs (4). Moncada (T-3rd, 31), Delmonico (T-4th, 30) and Hayes (5th, 29) also rank among the IL leaders in total bases.
- Hawkins is tied for the lead in home runs in the Southern League despite his .143 average, though he won't be adding to his total anytime soon as he was recently disabled.
- SS Johan Cruz is tied for second in the Carolina League with six doubles for Winston-Salem, while LHP Tanner Banks is tied for the league lead in wins (3) and ranks sixth in ERA (1.38).
- SS Mitch Roman ranks second in the South Atlantic League in batting average (.431), tied for first in hits (25), first in on-base percentage (.500) and fifth in OPS (1.017) for Kannapolis. You can read a recent feature post we did on Roman here.
- RHP Dane Dunning ranks second in the SAL in ERA (0.45) and tied for second in strikeouts (26).
- Roman has hit safely in 13 of the 16 games he has played in so far this season, while Delmonico has hit safely in 12 of 16 games.
- OF Luis Alexander Basabe has hit safely in his last eight games for Winston-Salem.
- C Zack Collins broke a one for 23 slump on Sunday with a single and two walks, though he still is just 3-33 over his last 10 games.
- After nearly 20 innings in affiliated pro ball as a pitcher, LHP Louie Lechich finally allowed an earned run in his last outing.
Other News, Notes and Links
- Dunning was named to Jonathan Mayo's MLBPipeline.com Prospect Team of the Week after a 13 strikeout performance over eight shutout inning.
- Robert was recently declared free agent by Major League Baseball and is free to sign with any club after May 20. Robert has been linked to the White Sox in many rumors along with Houston, St. Louis, Atlanta and San Diego among others. The White Sox will be holding a private workout with Robert in the near future, according to Bruce Levine.
- If you want to learn in-depth what the pre-draft rush is like for amateur scouts, you should listen to our latest Podcast, featuring an in-depth discussion with Director of Amateur Scouting, Nick Hostetler.
- The Sporting News just released an in-depth story on the White Sox top four pitching prospects currently at Charlotte working with pitching coach Steve McCatty (as featured above).
- OF Alex Call (#12 in the FutureSox top prospect rankings) was recently disabled with a chest strain that also sidelined him during the off-season. According to CSN Chicago's Dan Hayes, an MRI didn't find anything serious.
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Filed under: News and notes
Tags: Alex Call, Carson Fulmer, courtney hawkins, dane dunning, Danny Hayes, johan cruz, Kevan Smith, lucas giolito, Luis Alexander Basabe, Luis Robert, Mike Pelfrey, Mitch Roman, Nicky Delmonico, reynaldo lopez, Steve McCatty, Tanner Banks, Tommy Kahnle, willy garcia, Yoan Moncada, Zack Burdi, Zack Collins