White Sox news, Minor Leagues updates and more

February 17, 2011

Kenny Williams says Chris Sale goes to the bullpen [UPDATE]

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ February 17, 2011 2:45 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Chuck Garfien @ CSN tweets:

Kenny Williams makes it official. Chris Sale will start the season in the bullpen.

other Garfien tweets:

KW wants three lefties in the bullpen to go after the tough lefty hitters in the Central division.

Ozzie says that he’d prefer that Thornton be the Sox closer, but will take his time to make a decision.

Peavy threw 40 pitches off the mound. Said he felt “free and easy.” Good first day.

Until Peavy is ready, Sox will fill gap with off days and a couple possible candidates. Ozzie forgets their names.

Merkin says their names are Phil Humber, Charlie Leesman, Jeff Gray or Lucas Harrell.

BTW, now we know the answer to the previous post, Did Kenny Williams change Don Cooper’s mind on Chris Sale? No, he didn’t.

UPDATE: Merkin expands on the bullpen-starter decision:

The 22-year-old rookie had been in discussions as a possible temporary replacement for Jake Peavy in the fifth starter’s spot, assuming Peavy’s road to full recovery from season-ending surgery to repair a torn latissimus dorsi muscle in his right shoulder doesn’t lead him to Opening Day. But during organization meetings involving the White Sox front office and coaching staff held Thursday morning, it was decided the White Sox were best armed with Sale as a full-time reliever on the heels of his stellar 1.93 ERA posted out of the bullpen in 2010.

That decision won’t alter the White Sox decision to use Sale as a starter in Cactus League action, a plan Williams believes will be best-served for the southpaw’s overall development.

“This is very important because I had to explain this to my coaching staff as well,” Williams said. “The reason I had Chris Sale prepare as a starter is because that’s what he has done his whole life.

“So if you now tell him to prepare differently, might you not see the guy you last saw in September? We want him to prepare as he did so we can expect the same guy to show up. That means using all of his pitches and building him up as a starter.

“He has shown he can transfer that to a relief role,” Williams said. “Had we said he’s going to be a reliever from Day 1, might he prepare as a reliever and not build his arm up and legs up? We want him to be the best guy we just saw.”

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