In this edition of our White Sox Minor League News and Notes, a number of the highest ranked prospects in the system moved up the ladder, the rookie affiliates are making runs at the playoffs, and another new prospect officially joined the system in Winston-Salem. That plus a complete rundown of transactions, affiliate performances, and a handful of useful news links are all here to get you caught up on the week that was on the White Sox farm.
Key Prospects Promoted
A number of the biggest prospects in the system were on the move in the past week.
While the transaction is not yet official, Lucas Giolito will reportedly be promoted and make his White Sox debut with a start tomorrow. Even sooner than that, we’ll be getting another look at Carson Fulmer in the black and white, as he gets the starting nod on the back end of today’s doubleheader. Fulmer is the officially the 26th man and won’t be staying past the DH, barring the unexpected.
Flame-throwing right-hander Michael Kopech is not headed to Chicago, but he did move from AA Birmingham to AAA Charlotte and will make his debut there today. Ranked third on the FS30, Kopech reaches the top minor league level at just 21 years old, but he’s also well past his career high in innings pitched so he may see shorter starters to finish the year.
A pair of highly ranked position players went from Advanced-A to AA. Second-ranked Sox prospect Eloy Jimenez and ninth-ranked Zack Collins have both been promoted to Birmingham. Jimenez certainly made clear he was ready for the jump with his bashing of Carolina League pitching in 2017. Collins was a little more of a surprise given his problems with contact and average, but the club clearly feels he’s ready and the move allows both he and Seby Zavala to play catcher full time.
- RHP Chris Volstad was placed on the DL retroactively to 8/13, then re-activated a week later and started yesterday
- INF Ronald Bueno promoted from Birmingham to Charlotte
- INF Tyler Ladendorf placed on the DL
- RHP Michael Kopech promoted from Birmingham to Charlotte
- RHP Michael Ynoa activated from the DL
- RHP Danny Farquhar recalled from Charlotte to the Chicago White Sox
- OF Eloy Jimenez promoted to Birmingham from Winston-Salem
- C Zack Collins promoted to Birmingham from Winston-Salem
- 1B Keon Barnum activated from the Temporary Inactive list
- C Brett Austin placed on the DL, retroactive to 8/14
- LHP Scott Snodgress activated from the DL
- RHP Ryan Burr assigned to the Winston-Salem Dash (let’s hope he gets along with Ian Hamilton)
- INF Toby Thomas assigned to Winston-Salem from Birmingham
- C Daniel Gonzalez promoted to Winston-Salem from Kannapolis
- LHP Andre Wheeler placed on the DL, retroactive to 8/12
- OF Luis Alexander Basabe placed on the DL, retroactive to 8/13
- 1B Matt Rose activated from the DL
- RHP Mick VanVossen promoted to Winston-Salem from Kannapolis
- LHP Bernardo Flores placed on the DL
- OF Craig Dedelow promoted to Kannapolis from Great Falls
- RHP Kade McClure promoted to Kannapolis from Great Falls
- OF Blake Rutherford placed on the DL, retroactive to 8/14
- INF JJ Muno promoted to Great Falls from AZL
AZL White Sox
- RHP Luis Ledo assigned to AZL on a rehab assignment
DSL White Sox
- No transactions
For the Record
- Charlotte went 4-2 for the week (53-73 overall, 24 games back), their best weekly showing in quite some time. But the team still sits in last place in the International League South and has been eliminated from playoff contention for some time. The Knights have experienced a ton of roster turnover this year, and just as players heat up they find themselves with Chicago.
- Birmingham also went 4-2 on the week (24-30 2nd half, 14.5 games back) and yet still sit in last place in the Southern League North. With their recent hot streak, plus the addition of some key prospect bats, there’s a good chance they’ll climb out of the cellar. But their elimination number is just 2, with a couple weeks left to play, so the postseason just isn’t in the cards this year for the Barons.
- Winston-Salem posted a rough 2-6 week (26-31 2nd half, 7.5 games back), dropping them to 4th place in the Carolina League Northern Division. The Dash looked like they should have been a 2nd half contender, but some key injuries and promotions of top end prospects have made it tough for them to compete. Their second half has certainly been a large improvement over the first half, even after losing six games in the past seven days.
- A 4-2 week for Kannapolis (24-32 2nd half, 8 games back) didn’t take them out of last place in the SAL North, but they are now within one game of two teams above them. The performance was highlighted by some excellent pitching – just 13 runs allowed in six games is a good recipe for success. Remember that the Intimidators are already in the playoffs no matter how they finish the second half, so the question is just how ready they will be for the postseason.
- Great Falls opened the week with a pair of losses, but have since rattled off five straight wins to pad their division lead in the PIO North (10-8 2nd half, 2 games up on Billings). The Voyagers’ offense has come alive, scoring 59 runs during their current five game winning streak. Great Falls is in a good position to make a run at the postseason.
- The AZL White Sox are having a red hot second half, currently sporting a 13-5 record just a half game behind their Camelback-cousins the AZL Dodgers for the best record in both their division and the entire league. They will make the playoffs if they can win the AZL Central in the 2nd half.
- The DSL White Sox have an overall record of 30-35 and are in fifth place (of 8 teams) in the Baseball City Division.
In Case You Missed It
- Fangraphs released their “Summer” Top 100 Prospects list, on which the White Sox placed seven prospects. Yoan Moncada, Jimenez, Kopech, Giolito, Luis Robert, Reynaldo Lopez and Blake Rutherford all made it, with Dylan Cease just missing. See where they fell on Eric Longenhagen’s list here.
- Jimenez didn’t stay long with the Dash, but the club enjoyed the Eloy experience nonetheless and radio man Joe Weil wrote about it here.
- Dan Hayes of CSN did another tour of the affiliates recently, and has come back with some good content. Here’s a recent sample, but keep an eye out for more.
- Our Julie Brady took in a pair of Dash games recently and wrote about it. But instead of your typical scouting-style piece, Julie gives us more of a look into the nuances and stories that unraveled in front of her, giving some deep (and sometimes hilarious) insight into a few unusual occurrences from those games. Read it here.
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