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October 1, 2011
July 29, 2011
July 17, 2011
It is clear that good relievers like Heath Bell, Mike Adams and Leo Nunez can be had, and it is a relievers’ market. It is also a market in which a half-dozen teams are looking for right-handed-hitting outfielders, but while the Mets wisely approach the deadline trying to figure how much of Carlos Beltran‘s money to take to get one or two legitimate prospects, the Rockies have essentially backed off moving Ryan Spilborghs, and the Cubs have told suitors they want to hold onto Jeff Baker, that right-handed bat market consists of Conor Jackson, Josh Willingham, Reed Johnson, Lastings Milledge and Jeff Francoeur. The Dodgers would like to shed salary, but they are so crippled there isn’t much to shed other than Kuroda and the valuable Jamey Carroll; they’re trying to pare Triple-A payroll. Oakland will move the veteran bats and a reliever or two. Seattle won’t have a fire sale, and they’re not likely to get much for Erik Bedard. Kansas City will do some paring.
July 8, 2011
Lastings Milledge, of, White Sox: Milledge is still just 26, so we could still see the former Mets prospect back in the big leagues with a shot to rebuild his career. But for now, he’s having to prove himself again at Triple-A Charlotte. He did his share this week, hitting .367/.387/.800. If nothing else, Milledge illustrates how tough it is to be a righthanded corner outfielder in the big leagues. He has hit .287/.361/.432 against lefties in his career, which likely would have been enough to keep him in the majors. But his .261/.314/.378 career numbers against righthanders (in more than twice as many plate appearances) have been the difference between a long big league career and plenty of trips on the Triple-A-major league shuttle.
Milledge is hitting .292/.360/.480/.840 with 25BB and 38 K in 283 PA. Other numbers: .319 BABIP, 43% GB%, 13% LD%, 33 RC, 4.30 RC/27, .363 wOBA, 114 wOBA+, 129 OPS+.
April 12, 2011
I thought someone would claim him. Good for the Sox.
April 7, 2011
Prior to today’s game vs. Tampa Bay, the Chicago White Sox designated outfielder Lastings Milledge for assignment and purchased the contract of right-handed pitcher Jeff Gray from Class AAA Charlotte.
Milledge, 26, appeared in two games with the Sox this season, going 1-4 with a double and a run scored.
Gray, 29, was signed by the White Sox as a free agent on November 23, 2010. He is 1-1 with a 4.91 ERA (22 ER/40.1 IP) in 36 major-league relief appearances with Oakland (2008-09) and the Cubs (2010).
Gray will wear uniform No. 60.
Hopefully he isn’t claimed and goes to Charlotte.
UPDATE: J.J. asks why was Milledge DFA’d and not Lillibridge. Seems strange. And he thinks Milledge will be claimed. Unfortunately, I think so too. Someone will want him after his strong spring training.
March 27, 2011
UPDATE: Merkin @ CWS:
Although the White Sox cannot yet officially confirm their last four moves before breaking camp, the team’s 2011 Opening Day 25-man roster appears to be set. And reliever Jeff Marquez looks to be the odd man out.
March 26, 2011
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.”
March 25, 2011
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.
March 22, 2011
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.
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.”
March 20, 2011
… The outfielder has been fighting for a spot on the White Sox throughout spring training, which may be more routine than warming up for him. Milledge hasn’t taken any time off since the last season ended.
“I went to Venezuela and played the whole season there,” Milledge said. “I just haven’t take off since last season. I went home for about seven to ten days and for those seven to ten days I actually went to instructional league to get ready for the season over there.”
Earning a starting position isn’t likely for Milledge and he knows that.
“What I want to accomplish is to show the team that I can do anything at any time. If somebody’s tired or somebody’s down, I can step in and be able to produce and not look at the lineup sideways,” Milledge said.
March 17, 2011
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.
March 12, 2011
[Lastings] Milledge just told me White Sox have made such an impression on him, he’ll def remain w/team whether or not he sticks right out of camp
The 2011 White Sox are not a short-term proposition for Milledge, either. Not that he’s angling to fall short of making the big club, but he’s already anticipated any setbacks along the way.
“I’m definitely going to Charlotte [AAA] if I don’t make the club,” Milledge said. “We already talked about it. I don’t have a problem with that. Whether starting at AAA and going from there, I’ve been there and done that as well. I just want to be the best at what I do when I’m called upon and the team needs me to step up. Whatever the case may be, I want to be able to step in and be productive when I’m called upon.”
Fourth outfielder candidate Milledge continued to state his case for the 25th spot on the roster, playing a flawless center field and going 1-3 with an RBI.
“I’m happy with the way Milledge is playing right now,” Guillen said. “He’s playing very good. Catching the ball is very important.”
Guillen wasn’t worried about Milledge getting picked off of first after leading off the ninth inning with a single.
“I want [players] to create some confidence in spring training to steal bases.”
February 26, 2011
Trying to catch on with the Sox as a reserve outfielder, Milledge is already impressed with the way Guillen goes about his business.
“I think he’s a real, real honest guy,” said Milledge, a nonroster invitee. “He’s not afraid to express his feelings and he reminds me of my dad a lot. Don’t take anything for granted.”
Guillen has always taken pride in the way he treats every player the same, and Milledge has fallen right into line.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re the highest-paid player or a nonroster invitee,” Milledge said. “Black, white, Latin, it doesn’t matter. He treats everybody the same and what you see is what you get. Just play the game hard, respect the game and you won’t have any problems.”