White Sox news, Minor Leagues updates and more

February 27, 2011

White Sox sign remaining members of the 40-man roster

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ February 27, 2011 3:00 pm
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The Chicago White Sox have agreed to terms on 2011 contracts with the following 17 players:

Catchers (1) – Tyler Flowers

Infielders (4) – Gordon Beckham, Eduardo Escobar, Brent Lillibridge and Brent Morel

Outfielders (2) – Alejandro de Aza and Stefan Gartrell

Pitchers (10) – Anthony Carter, Kyle Cofield, Freddy Dolsi, Lucas Harrell, Gregory Infante, Nate Jones, Jeff Marquez, Jhonny Nunez, Chris Sale and Sergio Santos

All members of the White Sox 40-man roster are signed for 2011.

Mark Gonzales tweets today’s “signings should put Sox’s projected 2011 payroll slightly over $125 million.”

UPDATE: Gordon Beckham leads today’s signings with a $485,000 deal.


February 15, 2011

Ozzie Guillen calls out baseball players

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ February 15, 2011 6:15 pm
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From Ozzie Guillen’s comments at the CSN awards last night:

Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith, who famously lost seven teeth when he was hit in the mouth with a puck last season, also earned Guillen’s respect.

“You are a tough….guy. Too bad I can’t curse here,” said Guillen, who often attends Blackhawks games with his wife. “Baseball is easy. If one of our players has got an ingrown toenail, they don’t want to play. Then I see (Keith) and your teeth come out…it’s amazing what you guys do, it really is.”

and on Gordon Beckham:

“I love you, bro. You know why I love you? Because you almost got me fired last year. And I am still playing you,” Guillen said. “But what I can say about Gordon is that this kid came up out of high school and college and two days in the minor leagues. He thought baseball was easy. My personal opinion is that what Gordon went through last year…I was kind of excited about it, I was happy, because that teaches him for the rest of his career. He’s got a chance to be a Hall of Famer, he’s got a chance to be a pretty good ballplayer. He’s got a chance to be a great hitter. And if he listens to me, he’s going to be better. What this kid went through…not too many people can handle that, especially when you are a kid and you have had success all of your life playing baseball. God puts you in a position to fail, to see how really you love this game.”

February 4, 2011

No commercials for Gordon Beckham this year (video)

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ February 4, 2011 10:45 pm
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Merkin @ CWS:

“This year, I’m going to make my money on the field, not off the field,” Beckham said during a Thursday phone interview with MLB.com. “I’ve been offered a couple of different opportunities, but I’ve declined them, respectfully.”

BTW, here are Beckham’s Giordano’s spots:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H8NqvQL8GrI (0:31)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECm73kbVvuM (0:16)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdjTRMWO-FI (0:31)

January 31, 2011

Fangraphs on Gordon Beckham

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ January 31, 2011 8:40 pm

Axisa @ FG:

the kid was beating the ball into the ground roughly 50% of the time during the first two or three months of the [2010] season. Once he made an adjustment and started getting more loft on the ball, the production increased considerably. This shouldn’t be a surprise, The Cell is a hitter friendly park especially for right-handed hitters (137 HR, 104 wOBA park factor for RHB according to StatCorner). Park dimensions won’t matter too much when when you’re hitting the ball into the ground, just how long the groundskeeper keeps the grass. Beckham’s ground ball rate in 2009 (40.4%) was right in line with his rate from the last three months of 2010 (~40.3%), and the production was similar as well. …

January 23, 2011

Gordon Beckham wants to bunt for a hit more this year

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ January 23, 2011 2:00 pm

Reifert tweets:

[Gordon] Beckham says one of his goals is to bunt for a hit more in 2011. #SoxFest

Get yourself together Bacon. Slap-hit singles is Pierre’s style. We want doubles, triples and home runs dammit.

January 13, 2011

Alexei Ramirez bulks up

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ January 13, 2011 6:22 pm
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Padilla @ ESPN:

Ramirez, in particular, was noticeably different. Beckham said the svelte shortstop, who hit 18 home runs last season and had a .431 slugging percentage a year ago, added even more muscle.

“He looks to have gained muscle and it’s pretty exciting,” Beckham said. “I think some guys have hit more than I have (this offseason) but everybody is ready and excited and that’s important. When you have guys that are prepared and exited that’s a good combination.”

More Beckham here.

Camp Cora video

http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/white-sox/post/_/id/3090/video-live-from-camp-cora (1:11)

Camp (Joey) Cora: Gordon Beckham, Ramon Castro, Brent Morel, Alexei Ramirez, Alex Rios and Dayan Viciedo, Juan Pierre, A.J. Pierzynski and hitting coach Greg Walker.

December 6, 2010

White Sox offered Gordon Beckham to S.D. for Adrian Gonzales? [UPDATE]

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ December 6, 2010 7:36 pm
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Nightengale @ USAT tweets:

The Chicago White Sox were runner-up in the Adrian Gonzalez derby, offering IF Gordon Beckham and prospects.

Is there a rule that says half of the White Sox prospects must be shipped to San Diego?

UPDATE: Heyman @ SI tweets:

chisox dangled beckham for a-gon. Was talk deal could expand to include gavin floyd. But chisox didn’t favor big quick extension for adrian 

November 10, 2010

Most Important Sox, 2011 and beyond edition (#1-10)

Ballantini @ CSN:

As the coals in the hot stove are just beginning to get stoked up, it’s time to rank the current Chicago White Sox, in order of importance for 2011 and beyond. It’s not intended to be a strict list of merely the best players, or best values, on the White Sox. Rather, it takes into account team depth, the free agent market, or answering the question of which player would hurt the most not being on the team? …

1.    Chris Sale, P

Sale is not the best White Sox player — yet. But in just 21 games last season, he established himself as a potential superstar. He’s the most important White Sox player in 2011 because of his flexibility — he’s a potential starter, setup man, or closer. Talk about a “Sale” — the 21-year-old lefty will fill a crucial slot on the team for peanuts, and for a guy who provided $2.6 million in value (estimated salary values all via FanGraphs) in just his short stint with the club last season, the value of this Sale is immeasurable.

November 4, 2010

White Sox working on a multiyear year deal for LHP John Danks [UPDATE]

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ November 4, 2010 3:10 pm
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Padilla @ ESPN:

The Chicago White Sox have pushed John Danks near the top of their offseason priorities.

According to a source, the team is trying to work a multiyear contract for the left-handed starter into their budget. So while negotiating with free agent Paul Konerko lies ahead, as well as deciding whether or not to bring back A.J. Pierzynski, not to mention retooling the bullpen, it will all be done with an eye toward Danks.

The 24-year-old still has two more years of arbitration-eligible status, but the desire is to lock him in at least through his first free-agent year in 2013. That would require a minimum three-year deal, but a four-year pact is more desirable, according to the source.

Padilla speculates that something in the $20 million range might be enough for a 4 year contract. Aaron Gleeman thinks a 4 year deal would require something around $30 million.

Padilla also  says the Sox are discussing to keep their young core of John Danks, Alexei Ramirez, Gordon Beckham together. Other young players who could join that core are Sergio Santos, Dayan Viciedo, and Chris Sale.

UPDATE: MLBTR agrees with Gleeman and explains why teams have interest in locking up young starters like Danks.

THT’s White Sox 2011 Top 10 prospects

Hagen @ THT:

1. Chris Sale / SP/RP / Sale is a tenacious competitor who belongs in the rotation long term. He displays great movement and strong command of an impressive three-pitch mix. He is far and away Chicago’s best prospect. 

The rest at the link. It also lists the Top 10 White Sox players under the age of 26.

November 2, 2010

White Sox re-sign SS/2B Omar Vizquel

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ November 2, 2010 2:40 pm
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Merkin @ CWS (Press Release):

On Tuesday, the first of five days during which teams have to negotiate exclusively with their own free agents, [Omar] Vizquel returned to the White Sox via a one-year, $1.75-million contract. The expectation for the 11-time Gold Glove Award winner is that he will fulfill the role originally intended for him, as the primary backup to shortstop Alexei Ramirez and second baseman Gordon Beckham.

October 25, 2010

Kenny Williams indeed kicked the tires on Cliff Lee in July

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ October 25, 2010 7:55 pm
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Geoff Baker talked with Seattle Mariners team president Chuck Armstrong:

“I went home Thursday night, thinking we had a deal with the Yankees,” Armstrong said. “Pending an exchange of the physical information of the players involved. The next morning, when we got into the details of the physicals of the players involved, one of the players that was coming to us from the Yankees was disabled, and based upon the best medical information that our team medical director, Edward Khalfayan, had, he recommended that we not proceed. Jack (Zduriencik) and his people then spent some time with the Yankees trying to come up with an alternative player, or players, to replace that player. Or even players to be named later. If we could come up with that. In the meantime, other clubs became involved. The White Sox, Minnesota and Texas to name a few.”

So, Larry Stone heard correctly. Same for Ken Rosenthal. And, if you think Seattle asked for Gordon Beckham you are correct!

UPDATE: Tim Brown (Yahoo) says Cliff Lee might be a Kenny Williams target again in the off-season. Other possible Kenny Williams targets: Prince Fielder, Rafael Soriano, Matt Kemp.

October 18, 2010

JJ reviews Gordon Beckham’s 2010 season

Filed under: Chicago White Sox — The Wizard @ October 18, 2010 8:29 pm

JJ Stankevitz:

In 2009, Beckham swung at 24.7 percent of pitches out of the strike zone. In 2010, that percentage shot up to 32.1 percent.

… Swinging at pitches out of the strike zone usually leads to three results: weaker contact, more strikeouts, and fewer walks. Not surprisingly, we saw all three of those from Beckham in 2010. …

More player reviews by JJ here.

October 11, 2010

Differences between expected and actual BABIP for the 2010 White Sox

Gross @ THT:

A couple of years ago, Chris Dutton and Peter Bendix did some research on batted-ball data and created a metric called xBABIP (“expected BABIP”). xBABIP dispelled the myth that BABIP was primarily a function of “LD%+ .120.” Rather, as Dutton and Bendix found, BABIP was better explained as a function all batted-ball types and ratios with speed/power/strikeout considerations.

Last year, Derek Carty and Chris Dutton debuted the simple xBABIP calculator on THT. This tool has empowered users to determine a player’s xBABIP and compare it to their actual BABIP. Therefrom, one could forecast a hitter’s expected batting line, assuming all the input ratios were to remain constant. Over the course of 500+ PA, these ratios tend to be significant, though conclusions can still be drawn at the 300 PA threshold (we’d really only be waiting on IFFB% stabilization).

For all 270 hitters who accrued 300 or more plate appearances this season, I applied the xBABIP formula (by park) to determine each hitter’s expected batting lines. In short, what I have created is a spreadsheet of “what you can expect as a baseline for production in 2011, assuming all else remains constant.” In other words, this is how these hitters should have hit in 2010. …

Numbers for the White Sox players from the full spreadsheet:

Player PA xBABIP BABIP Difference
Andruw Jones 328 .310 .239 .071
Juan Pierre 734 .351 .294 .057
Mark Kotsay 359 .298 .247 .051
Carlos Quentin 527 .282 .241 .041
A.J. Pierzynski 503 .299 .278 .021
Alex Rios 617 .322 .306 .016
Alexei Ramirez 626 .311 .300 .011
Gordon Beckham 498 .304 .297 .007
Omar Vizquel 391 .309 .309 0
Paul Konerko 631 .297 .326 -.029

For players that played part of the year with the White Sox I got their BABIP numbers from statcorner. All the numbers are for the time they played for the White Sox:

Player PA xBABIP BABIP Difference
Jayson Nix 57 .262 .189 .073
Manny Ramirez 88 .313 .388 -.075

Mark Teahen had only 262 PAs.

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