The White Sox four full season affiliates finished their regular season on Monday but the Winston-Salem Dash will play on as they host a playoff game on Wednesday. Rookie affiliate Great Falls still has a game left as they vie for a playoff spot.
The Charlotte Knights ended their season by dropping their last series to the Gwinnett Braves. The Knights finished with a record of 74-70, which was much improved over than 2014 tally of 63-81. Second baseman Micah Johnson went 4-11 with a walk and a double over the series and finished his season with the Knights with a .315/.375/.466 line. Johnson will be added to the White Sox roster today and hopes find a permanent home in Chicago.
Dayan Viciedo went 2-4 with a double in the last game of the year and was fantastic with the Knights hitting .341/.401/.543 over 36 games. If you are wondering why Viciedo is not being called up to Chicago (at this time anyway), Viciedo is not on the 40-man roster while Micah Johnson is. It remains to be seen what the Sox plan to do with the Cuban slugger, but how he played in Charlotte at least should have their attention.
If you are interested in the 2016 spring training bullpen battle, relievers Junior Guerra, Blake Smith, and J.B. Wendelken all had scoreless appearances in this series. Blake Smith, who was added to the organization in a mid-season trade, finished the year with a 2.89 ERA and an eye-catching 64 strikeouts over 53 innings. Smith was drafted by the Dodgers organization as a outfielder, but has made the difficult transition to pitcher.
Mark Blackmar pitched 7.2 shutout innings of tw0-hit ball and closer Peter Tago finished the game with 1.1 perfect innings as the Barons blanked the Montgomery Biscuits 4-0 on Saturday en-route to winning the series. Peter Tago, who was an off-season rule V acquisition, completed a fantastic 2015 regular season by finishing with a 2.71 ERA over three affiliates and earned saves for each one. Tago is not quite finished, as he was chosen to represent the Sox in the Arizona Fall League.
Jacob May went 1-3 with a walk in the season finale and finished with a .274/.327/.333 line which is impressive because his season was in jeopardy after a scary head injury in early June. Despite missing nearly two months, May still stole 38 bags and improved his average and OBP from his 2014 numbers.
The play-off bound Dash finished off the regular season by winning two straight games over the Frederick Keys fittingly thanks to strong pitching. Jordan Guerrero struck out seven batters over and only allowed two hits over 5.2 scoreless innings on Sunday and Spencer Adams threw six innings without allowing an earned run on Monday to earn the win. After being held to two runs over the first two games, the Dash offense exploded for nine runs and fourteen hits on Monday. Keon Barnum had three hits and Nick Basto blasted a home run to lead the charge.
2015 1st round pick Carson Fulmer will start game 1 of the playoffs on Wednesday against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans.
The Kannapolis Intimidators ended their season on a sour note, as they were overwhelmed by the West Virginia Power during the three games. 2015 4th round draft pick Zack Erwin started the game on Saturday and struck out four while allowing one run over three innings. Erwin finishes his first professional season with a 1.34 ERA over 40.1 innings between Great Falls and Kannapolis. Starters Zach Thompson and Thad Lowry took the losses on Sunday and Monday, respectively. Shortstop Toby Thomas went 4-10 with a home run and two walks over the course of the three games to lead the offense.
The Voyagers easily swept the doubleheader against the Missoula Ospreys but could not overcome the Billings Mustangs on Monday. Starter Tanner Banks threw six shutout innings in game 1, while oddly all seven of the runs were scored via the home run. Dante Flores, Johan Cruz, Victor Velasquez, and Joxelier Garcia all went yard as Great Falls cruised to the win. Velasquez 2nd home run of the day in game 2 proved to the difference as he hit a 3rd inning grand slam.
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