White Sox Minor League Recap 5/11/2015: Alvarez perfect, Guerrero nearly so

Eddy Alvarez in the Field - (Image from MiLB.com)

Eddy Alvarez in the Field – (Image from MiLB.com)

White Sox affiliates split the day, highlighted by standout pitching and hitting performances in Kannapolis and a couple relative veterans continuing their strong performances in Charlotte…

Charlotte 7, Louisville 2

Kyle Drabek continues to excel in AAA as he led the Knights to another victory. Drabek twirled 5 innings of one-hit shutout ball, walking one and striking out five, lowering his ERA to 1.89 in four starts. In a box score oddity, six players each posted two singles (Jason Coats, Carlos Sanchez, Neftali Soto, Matt Davidson, Dan Black and Drew Garcia) but there were no extra base hits and the other three players didn’t record any hits. Maikel Cleto threw yet another 2 scoreless innings in relief, hitting 99 with his fastball according to local reports. Cleto has found his control in AAA this year and has been very, very good thus far: 19 IP, 8 H, 1 ER, 5 BB, 17 K. Hard to believe he’s not the next reliever call-up to Chicago should a need arise.

Chattanooga 6, Birmingham 2

Tony Bucciferro improved in his second AA start, but it wasn’t enough for the Barons. Bucciferro allowed just one run (earned) in six innings of work, striking out three while walking a pair. Raul Fernandez allowed the other five runs in his two innings of relief. Journeyman 1B/OF Christian Marrero led the Birmingham offense going 3-4 with a double and a walk. The prospecty top three in the order all added singles: Tim Anderson 2-5 with a K, Jacob May 1-5 with a K, Courtney Hawkins 1-4 with 2 K’s (and a successful sacrifice bunt!).

Myrtle Beach 8, Winston-Salem 5

Offensively, the Dash racked up four doubles including two from Nick Basto, but five runs didn’t get it done. Chris Jacobs, another org player like Marrero, went 3-4 with a double to add to his recent tear (1.137 OPS since the end of April). Keon Barnum had a two-hit day with a double as well. Perhaps the biggest news is what didn’t happen – Trey Michalczewski opened the game on the bench (pinch hit late), and the Dash did not steal a base despite Adam Engel reaching base twice and Keenyn Walker once. On the pitching side, Jake Cose made his second start of the year and did reasonably well as he ramps up, throwing five innings of two hit ball and allowing one earned run (and two unearned). Lefty Brian Clark skipped a level to go to Advanced A this year and continues to have control problems. He walked three in an inning of work in this one, and has a dozen free passes in 13.1 innings thus far (along with 4 wild pitches, and 12 K).

Kannapolis 7, Lexington 3

Eddy Alvarez stays red hot, reaching base in all five of his plate appearances (2 singles, 3 walks) and stealing 3 bags. His season line now stands at .324/.443/.509, he’s stolen 10 bases in 12 attempts, and he’s ready for a promotion if only there was a spot for him to move into. Louie Lechich, Michael Suiter and recently-added Ryan Leonards all added doubles to further help the Intimidators’ offense. On the pitching side, not to be overshadowed, Jordan Guerrero put together yet another masterful start: 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 10 K. Guerrero, like Alvarez, sure looks ready for a jump soon. Matt Cooper added another strong inning and has yet to give up a run or even a hit in his first four games of the season.

*Note: No trains were harmed in the making of today’s recap.

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