White Sox news, Minor Leagues updates and more

December 30, 2010

Kenny Williams to Ozzie Guillen: You handle Oney-Bobby saga

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 30, 2010 12:10 pm
Tags: , , ,

Haugh @ CT:

Oney, Ozzie’s 24-year-old son, put his famous father in another awkward spot Wednesday when he aired details via Twitter of Bobby Jenks’ personal problems shared in the sanctity of the clubhouse.

References to Jenks’ drinking issues, his marriage, an altercation with a clubhouse attendant and an emotional breakdown in Guillen’s office did little but raise doubts about just how private any future interaction with the Sox manager will stay.

“It is an issue I trust Ozzie to manage as there are obvious peripheral issues that are in direct conflict to what we believe and could directly compromise the integrity of clubhouse privacy, privacy that is vital to a team’s unity and success,” general manager Ken Williams told the Tribune in an e-mail.

What could go wrong? Ozzie has been handling Oney less than masterfully… Remember the Guillen-Ordonez fight? Could we have more fireworks?

UPDATE: JJ has a good post about it.

UPDATE #2: Kenny also addressed Bobby’s remarks:

“Not only do I disagree with Bobby’s assessments, I condemn them for being non-factual and the reckless spirit they represent,” Williams said. “The White Sox organization appreciates Bobby’s efforts while he was here, and we wish him well. But if he pauses to reflect on the many hours of conversation and examples of support we have shown over the years, it is my hope he realizes he owes Ozzie Guillen an apology.”

December 28, 2010

Bobby Jenks wants a manager who knows how to run a bullpen

Merkin @ CWS:

“I’ll always respect [Guillen] as a person and give him credit that’s due,” Jenks said. “But I want to play for a manager who trusts his relievers, regardless of what’s going on.

“With the way Ozzie was talking this winter and the way he treated me, I don’t want to fight with the guy. How many times did he question my ability, and then saying how he would love to have me back, but I would have to come to Spring Training and fight for the closer’s role like anyone else?

“Why would I come back to that negativity?” Jenks said. “I’m looking forward to playing for a manager who knows how to run a bullpen.”


According to Jenks, the White Sox offered two years at $10 million after the Winter Meetings and the team then asked for an answer on the morning before the initial agreement was reached with Crain. The White Sox source said the organization spoke with Jenks’ agent before Crain was signed, but no offer was made. It simply was a conversation about expectations.

Other teams besides Boston had interest. Jenks listed those opportunities from closing for Tampa Bay to starting — yes, starting — for the Texas Rangers. Jenks was a starter for five Minor League seasons with the Angels before being converted to the bullpen when joining the White Sox.

UPDATE: Seems Oney Guilen, Ozzie Guillen’s son, didn’t like Jenks’ comments.

December 27, 2010

Cuba may allow Cuban baseball players to play in other countries

Filed under: MLB — The Wizard @ December 27, 2010 7:32 pm
Tags: , ,

Passan @ YS:

The Baseball Federation of Cuba, headed by Fidel Castro’s son Tony, is discussing a plan that would allow baseball players to leave the country in exchange for a proportion of their salary going to Cuba, according to two sources familiar with the proposal.

Ideally, one source said, Cuba would send players to the major leagues and circumvent the spate of defections that have embarrassed the country. Such a plan, the source said, is currently a non-starter. Though MLB would welcome Cuban players, the arrangement would in effect pay the Cuban government for players, a violation of the United States’ 50-year-long embargo on Cuba. That is unlikely to thaw for baseball. While the U.S. government has allowed Cuba to play in both World Baseball Classics, Cuban players were the only ones not given the prize money handed out by the International Baseball Federation.

For now, the idea is for Cubans to go to Japan, South Korea, Mexico or Europe, like doctors and entertainers who make money elsewhere, then return home eventually. …

Juan Silverio scouting report

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 27, 2010 7:26 pm
Tags: ,

Newman @ STS:

Chicago White Sox prospect Juan Silverio split the 2010 season between the Pioneer and South Atlantic Leagues posting a .228/.267/.384 combined line in just over 300 at bats. However, about half his home run and walk totals came during short season in less than a hundred at bats while his performance in the “Sally” was reminiscent of a third string catcher. Is Silverio a non-prospect? No, but he’s not a player without significant flaws which more likely than not will prove fatal at higher levels. …

December 25, 2010

Diamond Futures’ 2011 White Sox Top 12 prospects

Baseball Numbers @ Diamond Futures:

Grade A

1) Chris Sale, LHP (2010 Performance Scores– Dominance 80; Control 60; HRrate 29; Stamina 27)

We believed Chris Sale was the best college arm available in the 2010 draft. His 2010 College Performance score trailed only Texas A&M’s Barrett Loux. So we were as shocked as the White Sox likely were when he was still available at #13. The Sox fast-tracked Sale to the Big Leagues in a relief role, and he only continued to make favorable impressions once arriving—ending the season as the team’s best option at closer. Coming out of the bullpen allowed Sale to consistently throw his fastball in the mid-90s—a few ticks higher than he had worked as a starter. The relief work also allowed him to focus on his slider—the pitch that offered greatest concerns coming into the draft. What the bullpen did not allow him to do was showcase his plus-plus change—the pitch that is the main reason why we believe that he is ideally suited for a starting role.

At a slight 6’6”, we believe Sale could ‘beef-up’ and work in the mid-90s as a front of the rotation starter with a solid three-pitch repertoire. Unfortunately, word out of Chicago is that Sale is likely to once again find himself in the bullpen in 2011. This isn’t a two-pitch Neftali Feliz, that we advocated a bullpen role for. Therein lies the paradox with the White Sox decision to make a run at the Central division in 2011—as it likely means that Sale is the de facto closer vs. working on being a difference maker at the top of the rotation. Still just 21yo, the White Sox are unlikely to harm his development in any significant way, but this is a special arm that should be developed as such.

Hit the link for the other 11 reports.

Conan O’Brien sings ‘Run, Rudolph, Run’ and other ‘Rudolph’ covers

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 25, 2010 12:00 pm
Tags: ,

Conan O’Brien sings Run, Rudolph, Run (song-only):

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Merry Christmas to all!

More ‘Run, Rudolph, Run’ covers inside (more…)

December 24, 2010

Josh Phegley’s platelet count has spiked up after his operation!

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 24, 2010 1:02 pm

Merkin @ CWS:

… Strong support from his family helped Phegley deal with the setback. He also learned more about how the game is run after being forced to the sideline, where he watched intently and studied the decisions made by his managers and coaches.

Most of Phegley’s treatment took place at Wake Forest Baptist Hospital, and Phegley gave huge credit to the White Sox organization for its ongoing support. As an up-and-coming White Sox prospect, Phegley was scheduled to take part in the Arizona Fall League so that he might pick up missed at-bats, but instead of trying to get the ITP under control while also playing baseball, Phegley went home to focus on getting well.

His spleen was removed during surgery on Nov. 5, a process that caused Phegley’s platelet count to automatically spike. If post-surgery blood work had revealed that his platelet count had plummeted again, that would indicate that there still was a problem. But his platelet count not only didn’t drop, it elevated further, as evidenced by tests taken in early December, which leads an ecstatic and encouraged Phegley to believe “all is well.”

“At the beginning, it was so surreal that it didn’t hit me that it was that big of a deal. You have this life-threatening illness, but you feel 100 percent normal,” said Phegley, who has been working out for the past month and only has to guard against certain bacterial infections that could do damage without the counteracting antibodies produced by his spleen. “It happens to thousands of people per year. It’s like a genetic thing.

“Some people I talk to, they get strep throat, and their system will do this. You can get a common cold, and it happens.” …

That’s absolutely fantastic!

The Hardball Times’ 2011 projections

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 24, 2010 12:56 pm
Tags: ,

Introduction. THT’s Forecasted Final 2011 Standings:

American League Central
Team Wins Losses
DET 87 75
MIN 79 83
CHA 79 83
CLE 68 94
KCA 58 104

A computer projection that’s not upbeat about the White Sox. Nothing new here!

December 22, 2010

Kenny Williams has looked at 4th/5th type starting pitchers

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 22, 2010 6:21 pm
Tags: , ,

From Merkin’s mailbag:

Q: What’s the White Sox greatest need in this offseason?

A: They still need another pitcher. I hear Williams has looked at fourth or fifth type starters who could fill in for Peavy while he’s working his way back from the detached latissimus dorsi muscle in his right posterior shoulder, but then could move into the bullpen when Peavy comes back. Someone like Ian Snell, John Maine or Jeremy Bonderman could be a candidate.

Of course, the team could add another reliever and move Sale into the rotation. Then, they would examine the rotation when Peavy returns and see where Sale belongs. That plan was explained by Williams to MLB.com back in September.

Scott Merkin sees Chris Sale as the White Sox closer in 2011

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 22, 2010 6:06 pm
Tags: , , , ,

From Merkin’s mailbag:

Q: In 2010, Chris Sale‘s contribution to the White Sox was indisputably huge. I was wondering what capacity you see Sale in for the White Sox in 2011: starter or bullpen? I remember Williams saying that the White Sox were looking for him to join the rotation, but finding solid bullpen help is so difficult.

A: Right now, I would say Sale is the White Sox closer, even if he prepares as a starter during Spring Training.

That guess is not meant as any slight to Matt Thornton, who certainly can handle this job and probably would become one of the American League’s elite closers. He has the makeup and, of course, the pure talent.

Thornton ultimately might become a victim of his own All-Star success. The Sox rely on Thornton to shut down hitters in the seventh or the eighth or possibly both innings and might feel more comfortable with the rookie Sale solely working the ninth.

Sale could end up as a starter. But pitching coach Don Cooper has stressed to me during two offseason conversations how he doesn’t think it’s good for Sale’s development to use him as a starter in place of Jake Peavy for four or five weeks and then put him back into the bullpen. Remember, just because Sale closes or relieves this season doesn’t mean he can’t be a top-flight starter in the future. Check out Texas and its potential plans for Neftali Feliz as an example.

Merkin also speaks positively about Tyler Flowers’ defense.

December 20, 2010

Santa Coop is bringing a healthy Jake Peavy to the South Side

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 20, 2010 9:46 pm
Tags: , ,

Merkin @ CWS:

Those White Sox fans still hoping for the perfect gift during this holiday season might have just received such a present from pitching coach Don Cooper. Cooper spoke Monday to MLB.com about a Jake Peavy rehabilitation throwing session he witnessed in Chicago about two weeks ago. And the reviews of Peavy’s showing provided by the White Sox pitching leader bordered on uplifting.

“With my eyes, he looked free and easy and was going through what he was doing pretty [darn] well,” said Cooper, who was joined by White Sox head athletic trainer Herm Schneider at Peavy’s workout. “I was immediately talking about how he looked looser, freer, easier and quicker.

“The problems he had were going on before he ended up ripping his muscle off. It was not a one-day thing. But in the words he used, ‘I feel normal.'”

… Cooper’s endorsement of Peavy on Monday speaks volumes as to how the right-hander is on the right track to recovery.

“He did a heck of a job to be where he’s at,” said Cooper. “I really didn’t think he would be right there. I thought it would be slower, but he hopped right into it and has a chance to be ready.

“Regardless, the next step is to build up strength and break through mental barriers common with this sort of injury. One is to let it go more and more, picking up the intensity of throws, and constantly climbing.” …

Jesse Crain is learning to throw a split-finger

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 20, 2010 3:16 pm
Tags: , , ,

Reifert tweets:

[Jesse] Crain on Sox: “I’m really excited and getting better. I’m learning to throw a split finger and working with Coop will make me better.”


Crain on his White Sox role: “I am going to be the right-handed pitcher between [Chris] Sale and [Matt] Thornton at the end of the game.”

Seems Sale will not be the closer.

UPDATE: Merkin @ CWS:

The 2011 closer’s job seems to belong to either Matt Thornton or rookie Chris Sale, but with both of them throwing from the left side, Crain stands just a tick ahead of Sergio Santos as the team’s right-handed closing option.”That was part of what attracted me, as well,” said Crain, who fits the mold of what J.J. Putz did for the White Sox in 2010 — being able to work anywhere from the sixth through the ninth. “I’ll definitely have opportunities to finish games.”

With Crain’s addition, the White Sox have five solid arms in their bullpen, and they could go with a couple of youngsters to fill out the seven-man bullpen. Crain was part of that all-in, 2011 mentality for the White Sox, with general manager Ken Williams telling MLB.com this past Saturday how there was more money to work with in free agency after he originally stated the team was tapped out following Konerko’s return.

Andre Rienzo scouting report

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 20, 2010 12:30 pm
Tags: ,


[Andre] Rienzo flashes pretty decent stuff, featuring a mid 90s fastball and developing offspeed stuff. Along with this, Rienzo has displayed pretty decent control. …

The offspeed stuff development is very exciting.

December 16, 2010

White Sox made unsuccessful 1-year, $3.5 million offer to Kerry Wood

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 16, 2010 7:25 pm
Tags: ,

Wittenmyer @ CST:

In a move that surprised even the Cubs, former staff ace and closer Kerry Wood agreed to return to his baseball roots and sign with his original team for one year, $1.5 million, according to a source.

… As recently as last week, team officials expected Wood to take a more lucrative, multi-year offer from either the New York Yankees, where he finished last season, or the Boston Red Sox.

Wood also considered a one-year, $3.5 million offer from the White Sox before following his heart back to the North Side, where he maintains strong relationships with Cubs‚ front office personnel, as well as several former teammates still with the club.

Damn, Kenny will push the 2011 payroll to $130 million!

December 15, 2010

White Sox sign RHRP Jesse Crain to 3-year, $13 million deal [UPDATE #2]

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 15, 2010 8:04 pm
Tags: , ,

Gammons @ MLB tweets:

White Sox have three year deal with Jesse Crain.

First mentioned in a tweet by Cowley:

Market on Q is not to KW’s liking …. but what’s that I smell in the kitchen? Smells like Crain cooking.

Crain is a Type-B free agent. He was offered arbitration.

UPDATE: A mini scouting report from Brett Ballantini:

Crain fits well in a Chicago bullpen filled with power arms, and features a wicked slider that has made a fool of many a White Sox hitter in the past. However, Crain has a tendency to give up flyballs, which could have a much more dangerous effect in homer-happy U.S. Cellular Field than at the Metrodome or Target Field in Minnesota.

UPDATE #2: Levine @ ESPN:

The deal is expected to be worth $13 million over three years, another major league source said.

Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.