White Sox news, Minor Leagues updates and more

April 27, 2012

What does the future hold for Gordon Beckham?

Chris Cwik:

Gordon Beckham has not lived up to expectations. After being selected eighth overall by the Chicago White Sox in 2008, Beckham was expected to be one of the team’s future stars. And after a strong rookie season, it looked like Beckham might achieve that goal. Since then, however, Beckham was struggled mightily. For the 25-year-old, 2012 is a make-or-break year. The early signs do not look encouraging. …

Other White Sox links:

March 19, 2012

Hector Santiago, starting pitcher?

Scott Merkin:

[Hector] Santiago, 24, entered Tuesday’s scheduled off-day for the White Sox as a veritable lock to break camp as one of the team’s seven relievers. He threw a scoreless inning against the Reds during Monday’s 1-0 loss at Camelback Ranch, giving him six without allowing a run this spring, while striking out six.

And the screwball has played a major part in this success.

… After being selected in the 30th round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, Santiago made 129 of his first 130 appearances out of the bullpen for Bristol, Class A Kannapolis and Class A Winston-Salem. He started 23 games for Winston-Salem and Double-A Birmingham in 2011, before pitching 5 1/3 scoreless innings in relief for the White Sox, giving up just one hit.

His impressive debut with the White Sox and continued success in Spring Training has caught the eye of the higher-ups in the organization.

“You know, we may take a [Chris] Sale approach with him,” said White Sox general manager Ken Williams of Santiago, who also could work as a late-inning left-hander. “We might keep him in the bullpen and then look to start him down the line.”

Speaking of pitches, Jake Petricka wants to continue developing his breaking stuff:

The harshest critic of Jake Petricka is … Jake Petricka.

Armed with a mid-90 mph fastball that most deem to be a “plus” offering — scouting jargon for beyond big league average — the White Sox’s No. 5 prospect shrugged and said he believed it to be only average. OK, he relented, maybe slightly above average.

Despite receiving an invitation to Chicago’s Major League camp this spring, it’s clear the 23-year-old right-hander is wary of becoming a one-pitch pitcher destined for the bullpen. He’s intent on improving his secondary pitches — a changeup and a slider — necessary ingredients for a future in the rotation.

Petricka finished 2011 in Class A Advanced Winston-Salem’s starting rotation. He went 7-8 with a 3.65 ERA over a career-high 113 1/3 innings across three lower levels before working exclusively as a reliever in the Arizona Fall League. Impressing others, if not himself, in either role this month likely would lead to a spot with Double-A Birmingham.

MiLB.com asked Petricka to describe and grade each of the three pitches he employs, fastball included. (His grade is based on a scout’s traditional 20-80 scale, 50 being Major League average.) Here is Petricka, in his own words:

Other White Sox links:

February 9, 2012

MLB.com’s 2012 Top 20 White Sox Prospects

Jonathan Mayo:

1. Addison Reed, RHP (video)
2. Nestor Molina, RHP (video)
3. Trayce Thompson, OF (video)
4. Eduardo Escobar, SS (video)
5. Jacob Petricka, RHP (video)
6. Erik Johnson, RHP (video)
7. Keenyn Walker, OF (video)
8. Simon Castro, RHP (video)
9. Tyler Saladino, SS (video)
10. Jhan Marinez, RHP (video)
11. Marcus Semien, SS (video)
12. Nate Jones, RHP (video)
13. Hector Santiago, LHP (video)
14. Charlie Leesman, LHP (video)
15. Kevan Smith, C (video)
16. Andy Wilkins, 1B (video)
17. Michael Blanke, C (video)
18. Scott Snodgress, LHP (video)
19. Jose Quintana, LHP (video)
20. Josh Phegley, C (video)

No Dylan Axelrod, Jared Mitchell, Andre Rienzo, Gregory Infante, Jeff Soptic, Rangel Ravelo on the list.

January 27, 2012

FutureSox’s 2012 Preseason Top 25 White Sox Prospects

Matt Cassidy:

1. Nestor Molina, RHP     [NEW]
2. Addison Reed, RHP     [Previous Rank: 2nd, no change]
3. Simon Castro, RHP     [NEW]
4. Tyler Saladino, SS     [Previous: 9th, +5]
5. Trayce Thompson, OF     [Previous: 3rd, -2]
6. Jacob Petricka, RHP     [Previous: 4th, -2]
7. Hector Santiago, LHP     [Previous: 16th, +9]
8. Keenyn Walker, OF     [Previous: 7th, -1]
9. Eduardo Escobar, SS     [Previous: 6th, -3]
10. Dylan Axelrod, RHP     [Previous: 19th, +9]
11. Jared Mitchell, OF     [Previous: 5th, -6]
12. Andre Rienzo, RHP     [Previous: 11th, -1]
13. Jhan Marinez, RHP     [NEW]
14. Gregory Infante, RHP     [Previous: 14th, no change]
15. Erik Johnson, RHP     [Previous: 17th, +2]
16. Charlie Leesman, LHP     [Previous: 15th, -1]
17. Pedro Hernandez, LHP     [NEW]
18. Andy Wilkins, 1B     [Previous: 13th, -5]
19. Scott Snodgress, LHP     [Previous: UNR]
20. Brandon Short, OF     [Previous: 12th, -8]
21. Jeff Soptic, RHP     [Previous: UNR]
22. Kevan Smith, C     [Previous: 24th, +2]
23. Ozzie Martinez, SS/2B     [NEW]
24. Ryan Buch, RHP     [Previous: 18th, -6]
25. Michael Blanke, C     [Previous: 32nd*, +7]

January 16, 2012

Kevin Goldstein’s 2012 Top 11 White Sox prospects

Kevin Goldstein @ BP:

System in 20 Words or Less: Two words: Not good.

Four-Star Prospects
1. Addison Reed, RHP
Three-Star Prospects
2. Nestor Molina, RHP
3. Trayce Thompson, OF
4. Jake Petricka, RHP
5. Simon Castro, RHP
6. Keenyn Walker, OF
Two-Star Prospects
7. Eduardo Escobar, SS
8. Jhan Marinez, RHP
9. Myles Jaye, RHP
10. Tyler Saladino, SS
11. Andre Rienzo, RHP

Goldstein has 9 more Sox prospects (Juan Silverio, 3B; Jared Mitchell, OF; Brandon Short, OF; Pedro Hernandez, LHP; Gregory Infante, RHP; Erik Johnson, RHP; Michael Blanke, C; Dylan Axelrod, RHP; Osvaldo Martinez, SS) more and his scouting report on Addison Reed at the link.

January 11, 2012

Baseball America’s Top 10 White Sox prospects for 2012

Phil Rogers:

1. Addison Reed, rhp
2. Nestor Molina, rhp
3. Simon Castro, rhp
4. Trayce Thompson, of
5. Jake Petricka, rhp
6. Keenyn Walker, of
7. Jhan Marinez, rhp
8. Tyler Saladino, ss
9. Juan Silverio, 3b
10. Ozzie Martinez, ss

January 2, 2012

BaseballInstinct looks at Sox prospect RHP Jacob Petricka

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ January 2, 2012 1:00 pm
Tags: ,

BaseballInstinct:

313°. Jacob Petricka, RHP, White Sox, 6/5/1988 – A big 6’5″ righty, Petricka flashes triple digits and has one plus offering in that 4-seam FB. He’s only 170 lbs., so concern over him holding up over 200 innings seasons is certainly apparent. He moved over 3 levels in 2011, dominating over 9 starts between the Sally and Appy before hitting a wall in High-A Carolina. His K rate dropped to just 15.2% over 67.2 IP and he walked 26 in that same span. He’s still refining a slider and his CU lags behind. We’ll see how he fares in High-A when he’s able to go back to his FB more often. Profiles better as a RP. ETA 2013.

Stats:

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2010 22 2 Teams 2 Lgs Rk-A CHW 2 5 .286 3.05 17 8 1 0 0 0 44.1 38 23 15 1 15 0 48 3 1 8 191 1.195 7.7 0.2 3.0 9.7 3.20
2010 22 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 2 4 .333 2.86 8 8 0 0 0 0 34.2 25 12 11 1 7 0 38 2 1 4 136 0.923 6.5 0.3 1.8 9.9 5.43
2010 22 Kannapolis SALL A CHW 0 1 .000 3.72 9 0 1 0 0 0 9.2 13 11 4 0 8 0 10 1 0 4 55 2.172 12.1 0.0 7.4 9.3 1.25
2011 23 3 Teams 3 Lgs A+-A-Rk CHW 7 8 .467 3.65 23 22 0 0 0 0 113.1 114 53 46 3 39 0 99 3 0 9 486 1.350 9.1 0.2 3.1 7.9 2.54
2011 23 Bristol APPY Rk CHW 0 0 0.00 2 1 0 0 0 0 4.0 4 0 0 0 0 0 5 0 0 0 14 1.000 9.0 0.0 0.0 11.2
2011 23 Kannapolis SALL A CHW 3 1 .750 2.81 8 8 0 0 0 0 41.2 39 14 13 0 13 0 48 0 0 4 169 1.248 8.4 0.0 2.8 10.4 3.69
2011 23 Winston-Salem CARL A+ CHW 4 7 .364 4.39 13 13 0 0 0 0 67.2 71 39 33 3 26 0 46 3 0 5 303 1.433 9.4 0.4 3.5 6.1 1.77
2 Seasons 9 13 .409 3.48 40 30 1 0 0 0 157.2 152 76 61 4 54 0 147 6 1 17 677 1.307 8.7 0.2 3.1 8.4 2.72
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table Generated 1/2/2012.

And an update on Simon Castro from BaseballInstict:

Simon Castro was one of San Diego’s top prospects at about this time last year. Castro pitched well enough in 2010 to appear in the Futures Game while pitching for San Antonio with a 2.92 ERA and 107 K in 130 Innings. This season he was disappointing in his stint at Double-A, 4.33 ERA 73 K, 95 hits in 89 innings and was awful at Triple-A, 10.17 ERA, 21 K, 37 hits in 26 innings. Pedro Hernandez, was 10-3 with a 3.49 ERA in 2011. The 23-year-old lefty [righty] has a low to mid 90s fastball and a very good change-up.

December 29, 2011

John Sickels’ Top 20 White Sox prospects for 2012

John Sickels:

1) Nestor Molina, RHP, Grade B+: Acquired from the Blue Jays for Sergio Santos, and immediately became Chicago’s first or second-best prospect. I think he can remain a starter. Molina was a big topic of discussion earlier this month.

2) Addison Reed, RHP, Grade B+: The best closer prospect in baseball thanks to superior command of 93-97 MPH fastball and devastating slider. You can make a case to rank him ahead of Molina, if you think Molina will be a reliever.

3) Tyler Saladino, SS, Grade C+: 2010 seventh round pick out of Oral Roberts developed from draft sleeper into solid prospect. Good power for a middle infielder, and has some idea about the strike zone, scouts like his work ethic. Main issue now is if he can stick at shortstop, and I think he has a decent chance to do so.

4) Trayce Thompson, OF, Grade C+: Highest-ceiling bat in system, tapping into his power now and making good progress on defense. Kills lefties but has serious contact problems against right-handed pitching. Struck out 172 times while repeating Low-A. Has the tools to be a star slugger but also carries a high risk of failure.

5) Hector Santiago, LHP, Grade C+: Came out of nowhere to reach the majors (briefly) in 2011 thanks to development of a new screwball to go with 90-95 MPH fastball. Third pitch still needs work and it is unclear if he starts or relieves in the long run, although recent rumors indicate the Sox will continue to start him. Projects as number three/four starter if third pitch develops, or a power relief arm.

The best closer prospect in baseball” comment helps explain Sergio Santos’ trade.

December 16, 2011

Fangraphs’ Top 15 2012 White Sox prospects

Marc Hulet:

2. Nestor Molina, RHP

BORN: Jan. 9, 1989
EXPERIENCE: 5 seasons
ACQUIRED: 2006 non-drafted free agent (Toronto)
2010-11 TOP 10 RANKING:
Off

SCOUTING REPORT: I came very close to ranking Molina No. 1 overall in the White Sox system. As a Jay, he would have ranked in the six to eight range – which tells you a little bit about the depth of the two systems. Some online publications have referred to Molina as a “control pitcher” which has a negative connotation and implies that his stuff is below average. While the Venezuelan has plus control, his stuff is at least average – if not better. He has an 87-93 mph fastball and a potentially plus splitter that is his out-pitch. He also has a decent slider.

YEAR IN REVIEW: When his breaking ball improved to the point where the Jays organization felt it could be at least MLB average, Molina was moved into the starting rotation for good in 2011. He had a breakout season and reached double-A. The 22-year-old hurler spent the majority of the season in high-A where he posted a 2.45 FIP (2.58 ERA) in 108.1 innings. He showed his outstanding control by posting a walk rate of 1.16 BB/9. Molina also sent a large number of batters back to the dugout shaking their heads (9.55 K/9).

YEAR AHEAD: Molina received five late-season starts in double-A and showed that he was far from over-matched: 0.47 FIP, 0.82 BB/9, 13.50 K/9. He probably needs about half a season at double-A before moving up to triple-A and could be ready for the Majors by the end of the season. Chicago tends to be overly aggressive with some of its pitchers so I wouldn’t be shocked to see Molina in triple-A to begin 2012.

CAREER OUTLOOK: Molina has the makings of a No. 3 starter at the MLB level. The big question for him is his durability. Originally an outfielder, he was moved to the bump permanently in 2008 and has pitched more than 100 innings just once (2011). There is also some concern over his delivery and that, unless it gets smoothed out, he’ll be a high-leverage reliever at the MLB level.

For the other prospects hit the link.

December 14, 2011

BaseballInstinct’s 2012 Top 10 White Sox prospects

George Utter:

1. Nestor Molina, RHP 01/09/1989 H: 6’1” W: 180 – (Nathaniel’s take) Nestor Molina had a breakout season in 2011, posting unbelievable strikeout-to-walk ratios at both High-A Dunedin (115/14 in 108 1/3 IP) and Double-A New Hampshire (33/2 in 22 IP). Originally a third baseman/outfielder, Molina converted to pitching in 2008, and wasn’t even a starting pitcher until this season, so his huge year caught many by surprise. While Molina’s pure “stuff” isn’t quite as good as his numbers suggest, it’s no slouch, either: he works at 89-94 mph and boasts a very good splitter.  Molina will probably start 2012 in either Double-A or Triple-A, but he’s very polished and should end up in Chicago at some point during the season. Don’t be surprised if Chicago initially lets his two pitches work in relief upon his reaching the majors.

Our Video

Our Instinct: We had Molina #3 in our Blue Jays Top 10 and scouted him ourselves.  Tom Belmont took the above video of Molina in July, and it’s been used on several notable sites.  We love what Molina brings to the table, but as Tom said in his Prospect Instinct|Nestor Molina article, he’s not going to be an ace, nor does he have the body to be a workhorse in the middle.  He figures to be a nice fit as a #4, however, as Nathaniel suggested, he could end up in the White Sox bullpen.

Reports for the other prospects (2. Addison Reed, 3. Tyler Saladino, 4. Trayce Thompson, 5. Jeff Soptic, 6. Jacob Petricka, 7. Rangel Ravelo, 8. Kevan Smith, 9. Jared Mitchell, 10. Keenyn Walker, and Dylan Axelrod) at the link.

September 14, 2011

The Sox won’t resolve Ozzie Guillen’s situation until after the Marlins have hired a manager says Jayson Stark

Stark @ ESPN:

Who will be managing the White Sox next season? We tossed that question at a baseball source who is tight with team chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, and got this succinct reply: “Ozzie Guillen.”

The same source also said, with zero equivocation, that if the Marlins think they can wait this out and then scoop Guillen off the unemployment line this winter, they’d better re-think. Unless the folks in Florida want to trade a big-time player to the South Side, the source said, the White Sox won’t make any move to resolve Guillen’s future until after the Marlins have hired a manager.

Seems like the Sox want to make others think Guillen isn’t going anywhere so they have more leverage in any negotiations that take place. I’m not confident it will work. There is also this nugget:

White Sox officials have been telling people in the game they need to cut payroll next year after going over budget this season. And they also have five starters under contract for next year, even without Buehrle.

So an executive of one team who spoke with the White Sox brass says the only way he sees them making room for Buehrle is if he’s willing to “be creative” about his next contract. AND the club would have to be able to trade one of its current starters — most likely Gavin Floyd. Can all that happen? Of course. But it’s still a lot of hoops for Buehrle and his team to jump through.

I think Buehrle will be “creative.” Maybe a 2-3 year offer would be enough. Sign him Jerry!

Other White Sox links:

May 8, 2011

Jacob Petricka struck out 9 and walked 2 last night (May 7)

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ May 8, 2011 9:14 pm
Tags: ,

5/7:

Kannapolis Intimidators
Player IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Petricka 6.0 5 2 1 2 9 0 2.73
Moran 2.0 0 0 0 1 2 0 12.21
Hunt, L (W, 1-0) 1.0 2 2 1 0 2 0 1.80

WP: Petricka.
Groundouts-flyouts: Petricka 6-1.
Batters faced: Petricka 24.

April 22, 2011

Baseball America on Jacob Petricka

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ April 22, 2011 2:42 pm
Tags:

BA staff:

As a second-round pick last year out of Indiana State with a fastball that consistently gets into the mid-90s, White Sox RHP Jacob Petricka shouldn’t face too many problems in low Class A. He’s come as advertised so far pitching with Kannapolis, where he’s allowed one run in 11 innings over his last two starts. Petricka, 22, now has an ERA of 0.53 and a 22-4 K-BB mark in 17 innings .

April 20, 2011

Jacob Petricka has struck out 22 and walked 4 on his 3 outings this year

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ April 20, 2011 3:20 pm
Tags: ,

4/10:

Kannapolis Intimidators
Player IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Petricka 6.0 0 0 0 1 9 0 0.00
Reed 2.0 1 0 0 1 4 0 0.00
Wilson, J 2.0 0 0 0 3 2 0 0.00
Negus 2.0 1 0 0 2 1 0 0.00
Cooney, C 2.2 1 0 0 1 1 0 0.00
Upchurch (W, 1-0) 1.1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0.00

4/15:

Kannapolis Intimidators
Player IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Petricka (W, 1-0) 5.0 4 0 0 1 7 0 0.00
Arroyo 1.2 5 3 3 1 3 0 4.05
Ballinger, J (S, 1) 2.1 1 0 0 1 2 0 1.35

4/20:

Kannapolis Intimidators
Player IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Petricka 6.0 5 1 1 2 6 0 0.53
Burnside (W, 2-0) 2.0 3 4 4 1 0 1 4.85
Wilson, J (S, 2) 1.0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1.29

April 10, 2011

Jacob Petricka strikes out 9 and walks one (April 10)

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ April 10, 2011 9:24 pm
Tags: ,

4/10:

Kannapolis Intimidators
Player IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA
Petricka 6.0 0 0 0 1 9 0 0.00
Reed 2.0 1 0 0 1 4 0 0.00
Wilson, J 2.0 0 0 0 3 2 0 0.00
Negus 2.0 1 0 0 2 1 0 0.00
Cooney, C 2.2 1 0 0 1 1 0 0.00
Upchurch (W, 1-0) 1.1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0.00

Groundouts-flyouts: Petricka 5-4, Reed 2-0, Wilson, J 0-1, Negus 2-1, Cooney, C 5-2, Upchurch 0-1.
Batters faced: Petricka 20, Reed 8, Wilson, J 9, Negus 8, Cooney, C 10, Upchurch 4.

Mike Blanke’s 2-run HR in the 16th inning provided the only runs of the game.

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