Welcome back to your most comprehensive coverage of all things White Sox farm in one convenient article. This week we will cover the Arizona Fall League “Fall Stars” Game, Caribbean Winter Leagues, and examine the unveiling of the first (of many to come) White Sox prospect rankings.
Arizona Fall League
It was a light week for the White Sox prospects in the AFL as the league had their version of the All-Star break with their Falls Stars Game on Saturday. Reliever Brian Clark appeared in the top of the 8th retired the only batter he faced. Courtney Hawkins came into the game in the bottom of the 7th as a DH and struck out in his only at bat.
Zack Collins (.235/.435/.412, 6 BB, 5 K over 23 PA)
Courtney Hawkins (.192/.218/.308, 2 BB, 16 K over 54 PA)
Danny Hayes (.178/.240/.244, 4 BB, 13 K over 49 PA)
Trey Michalczewski (.111/.256/.139, 7 BB, 15 K over 43 PA)
Collins blasted a three-run home run on Tuesday while adding a walk and a single in an impressive performance. Collins is on the taxi squad, which means he can only play twice a week, but it isn’t affecting his excellent offensive approach. Collins now has more walks than strikeouts and is clearly not over matched by the AA-AAA level competition. Hawkins played in three games this past week leading up the Falls Stars Game and went 3-12 with only one strikeout, which is an encouraging development. Michalczewski’s batting average continues to plummet, but the good news is that he coaxed three walks in his last two games.
Lechich continues his logic-defying scoreless streak, pitching around two hits over one inning in his first appearance of the week, and two walks over one inning in his second. The converted outfielder isn’t racking up tons of strikeouts, but incredibly keeps putting up zeroes as he hones his craft as a pitcher. Clark had a fantastic week spanning two appearances, striking out four batters over four no-hit innings, with his only blemish being two walks. It was decidedly less stellar for Sanburn, who was lit up in his start, allowing five runs to score over three innings. Turner allowed a solo home run in his only inning of work on Tuesday.
Caribbean Winter Leagues
Some rough numbers from this trio that is seeing occasional playing time in the Venezuelan League. Aside from Avisail Garcia (whose tenure with the White Sox may be coming to end anyway), Rondon is the last piece in the infamous Jake Peavy trade still in the system. Rondon is a defensive wizard, but has never been able to hit enough to justify serious prospect attention.
Hobson played in two consecutive games back on October 12th and 13th, then hasn’t appeared since. He homered in his first game, then went 0-4 with four strikeouts and presumably went home. In contrast to Hobson’s Mexican League experience, minor league veteran Jason Bourgeois played in his first four games last week.
Wilfredo Rodriguez (.100/.308/.100 in 4 games)
Catcher Wilfredo Rodriguez, a former 7th round draft, was signed as a minor league free agent by the White Sox in October.
Rymer Liriano (.367/.486/.533 in 11 games)
Finally, we’ve reached the star of our Carribbean Winter League coverage. The recently signed Liriano went 4-4 with a double and a triple on Saturday in his native Dominican Republic League. The Sox have some hard decisions to make with their roster, and especially so in the outfield. Depending on which direction GM Rick Hahn decides to take the team, Liriano could either be in Charlotte or a perhaps a starter for the big league club, patrolling corner outfield spot.
- According to multiple sources, the White Sox have hired Mark Grudzielanek to manage the AAA Charlotte Knights. Grudzielanek was a long time MLB player and most recently a part of the Arizona Diamondbacks player development staff. He previously managed the Arizona D’Backs Class A affiliate Kane County Cougars and led them to the 2015 Midwest League Western Division Championship. Following the successful season, he was promoted to assistant coordinator of player development, a position he served in 2016.
- The White Sox released former prospect Daniel Webb and outrighted J.B. Shuck to Charlotte.
Links and Notes
- Baseball America released their 2017 top 10 White Sox prospect rankings. The 2016 draft class is already dominating the list, taking the top two spots and five of the ten total. Our own Top 30 list will come out in January.
- BA also released their best tools and 2020 lineup article for the White Sox farm system.
- FutureSox’s Matt Cassidy has a unorthodox proposal for what to do with a struggling outfield prospect that is worth a read.
- FutureSox also had a offseason mail bag that covered a multitude of topics.
- Clay Overcash, who signed Trey Michalczewski and Alec Hansen among other White Sox prospects, was named the team’s Scout of the Year at their organizational meetings.
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