The big news for the Chicago White Sox right now is that they claimed Manny Ramirez off of waivers. It’s hard to add a better piece than Ramirez this late in the season, but what will the September roster expansion give the White Sox for the regular season’s last month?
The 40-man roster is full to capacity with Ramirez’s addition and Jake Peavy being moved to the 60-day disabled list. Pitchers Lucas Harrell and Carlos Torres have already been recalled due to injuries in the bullpen and figure to stick around. Brent Morel is doing quite well in AAA (.313/.342/.498), but he won’t be earning a call-up since he’s not on the 40-man roster.
One player who will be added is corner infielder Dayan Viciedo. The Cuban is hitting .224 (17-76) since being sent back to Charlotte, but has four home runs in his last ten games. He will probably see less frequent at-bats than his last stint with the Sox due to Ramirez’s presence, but could benefit from the experience.
As for pitchers, Randy Williams is the only odds on pick to be recalled among the pitchers. Jeff Marquez made an appearance with the Sox earlier this year, but is a mediocre pitcher who got beat around in his Major League debut. He has a chance if the Sox feel they want an extra pitcher for emergencies. The other healthy pitchers on the 40-man roster are Freddy Dolsi, Brian Omogrosso, Jhonny Nunez and Clevelan Santeliz. Dolsi, Nunez and Santeliz have had rough seasons for the Knights and seem unlikely to earn a call. Omogrosso just started rehabbing with Bristol last week so he’s not in consideration.
The catching situation is more interesting. It would be beneficial to call up a third catcher. The options are Donny Lucy, who was the team’s backup while Ramon Castro was hurt, and Tyler Flowers, a top prospect who has struggled this year. Lucy probably has more short term value because he is a better defender, but Flowers might benefit from the experience if the Sox still believe in him. Flowers was a September call-up last year and struck out in half of his 16 at-bats, going 3-16. It’s possible the Sox will wait until the Knights’ season ends on the 6th to make up their mind.
Outfielder Alejandro De Aza has a good shot to join the Sox. He can play three outfield spots, has speed for pinch-running and has Major League experience. Stefan Gartrell, meanwhile, is on the bubble. He has 26 homers this year for the Knights, but an OPS below .800.
The Sox have a few options, but it none of them will likely be in a position to make a noticable impact on the team’s playoff push.