Maybe the Sox want both Lastings Milledge, and Brent Lillibridge to make the team.
UPDATE: Merkin @ CWS:
But comments from Guillen following Marquez’s four-inning Saturday start, during which he allowed three runs on six hits, just might indicate both Lillibridge and Milledge will be leaving Arizona with the White Sox.
“He pitched well. He pitched good. He did everything we asked him to do, and that’s the best Spring Training he’s had, put it that way, since we’ve had him,” said Guillen of Marquez, who came over from the Yankees as part of the November 2008 Nick Swisher trade.
“In the meanwhile, you have to make moves sometimes,” Guillen said. “The last move always hurts.”
Brent Ballantini has it. On Lastings Milledge:
And he’s a Kenny guy, right?
Well, Williams traded for Lillibridge just a few years ago, too. But do the White Sox see greater upside from Milledge—perhaps even to the extent where he could be a long-term possibility on the team if/when Juan Pierre or Carlos Quentin leave? Absolutely. Milledge has flashed five tools in the desert this spring.
Seems Merkin’s report that the 25th spot is between Lastings Milledge and Brent Lillibridge was accurate. Here’s today’s Merkin:
Optioned to Triple-A Charlotte prior to Tuesday afternoon’s Cactus League game against the Mariners were outfielder Alejandro De Aza, right-hander Gregory Infante and catcher Tyler Flowers.
Also reassigned to Minor League camp were six players who had been in the big league camp as non-roster invitees: right-handed pitchers Brian Bruney, Jeff Gray, Josh Kinney and Shane Lindsay; infielder Dallas McPherson; and outfielder Jordan Danks.
… Milledge was in the starting lineup for Tuesday’s game in Peoria, Ariz., as he continues his competition with Brent Lillibridge for the last seat on manager Ozzie Guillen’s bench.
Merkin @ CWS:
The White Sox are down to the final couple of roster decisions before breaking camp, and two of those players on the bubble will be on display Tuesday in Peoria against the Mariners. Lastings Milledge gets the start in left field and will be leading off, while Brent Lillibridge hits ninth and starts in center. Milledge and Lillibridge stand as the main candidates for the 25th man or last utility outfield spot.
BTW, Humber on his cutter:
Humber talked Sunday with pitching coach Don Cooper, who laid out the current scenario for the right-hander. With Peavy almost certain to start the 2011 regular season on the disabled list, the fifth-starter’s job is there for the taking for Humber.
A strong Spring Training by Humber has been enhanced by the development of a cutter. Cooper discussed with Humber adding the pitch during the offseason, and Humber seems most satisfied by the consistency of the pitch as opposed to being able to find success on one or two offerings.
“It has definitely been huge for me, being able to put more movement on my fastball,” Humber said. “I’ve gotten a lot of easy outs on it. When you get in tough counts, it’s nice to have something to throw in there that stays off the fat part of the bat. That’s what it has been for me.”
Ballantini @ CSN:
4th spot on the bench
There are eight players vying for this last bench spot alongside Ramon Castro, Mark Teahen, and Omar Vizquel. What’s sad, if not unsurprising, is that some of the best performers in camp come from this group of players, fighting for their major-league lives.
The Pick: Lastings Milledge
The pick could easily be at least five of the other seven players, but Milledge brings a “wow” factor to the White Sox that could prove crucial in the case of a prolonged slump or injury. The onetime first-rounder has proven nearly as sound defensively as Brent Lillibridge and Alejandro De Aza and is every bit the baserunner. He also brings more pop as evidenced by his pair of home runs on Thursday to bring his Cactus league total to four.
Fundamentally (bunting), he might trail the competition, but the White Sox have enough bunters on the roster. It also helps that as the fifth outfielder (given that Teahen will likely see a healthy chunk of time spelling Carlos Quentin in right), Milledge balances the bench as a right-hander, which gives him an advantage over De Aza. Perhaps the biggest advantage Milledge has over the competition is five walks against five strikeouts—all of the other aspirant outfielders are much heavier on the Ks.
More battles at the link.
Manager Ozzie Guillen didn’t hesitate when asked Monday night about Brent Lillibridge starting ahead of Gordon Beckham at second base for the second consecutive game.
“I love the way he plays,” Guillen said of Lillibridge, who went 4-for-6 on the Sox’s recent trip. “I think I’m going to take advantage and have his hot bat. He had very good at-bats (Sunday), and that’s all I ask. This kid continues to have a hot bat, I’ll find a place to play him.”
There is something wrong with this headline: Ozzie. If Beckham isn’t going to start (UPDATE: three) consecutive games, then send him to the minors. This is crazy…
Minor League Transactions
Chicago White Sox
Signed: OF Alejandro De Aza*
Released: RHP Ryan Strauss, LHP Wander Perez
Added to 40-man roster: C Donny Lucy
Optioned to Triple-A: RHP Dan Hudson, SS Brent Lillibridge, OF Alejandro De Aza
Option transferred: RHP Jhonny Nunez (Triple-A to Double-A)
Voluntarily retired: RHP Levi Maxwell, OF Harold Baines Jr.
BTW, Jhonny Nunez switched from relieving to starting.
Prior to today’s game vs. the Oakland Athletics, the Chicago White Sox made the following seven roster moves:
• Optioned OF Alejandro De Aza, RHP Daniel Hudson and INF Brent Lillibridge to Class AAA Charlotte;
• Reassigned RHP Greg Aquino, LHP Charlie Leesman, C Donny Lucy and LHP Erick Threets to minor-league camp.
With the moves, the White Sox 25-man roster includes 12 pitchers, two catchers, seven infielders and four outfielders.
Sergio Santos and Jayson Nix made the opening day 25-man roster.
Mark Gonzales remind us that Jayson Nix and Sergio Santos don’t have any minor-league options left and must pass through waivers to remain with the Sox if they aren’t named to the roster. OTOH, Alejandro De Aza and Brent Lillibridge have minor-league options and can be sent to the minors. Erick Threets and Greg Aquino have signed AAA contracts and will remain with the Sox even if they aren’t included in the team’s the roster. Conclusion: Sergio Santos with his 98mph fastball and his three above average pitches ain’t going anywhere. BTW, Jim warns on the danger of taking a 13th pitcher in Jayson Nix’s place.