On the major-league site of the roster, all arbitration-eligible White Sox are under contract for 2017. After Jake Petricka and Dan Jennings agreed to terms on Thursday, Todd Frazier, Miguel Gonzalez and Zach Putnam joined them on Friday, preserving for at least one more year Keith Foulke’s legacy as the last White Sox to have an arbitration hearing.
The specific figures aren’t so important these days, but here’s how the salaries compared to their MLB Trade Rumors projections:
- Todd Frazier: $12M ($13.5M)
- Miguel Gonzalez: $5.9M ($2.6M)
- Brett Lawrie: $3.5 M ($5.1M)
- Avisail Garcia: $3M ($3.4M)
- Dan Jennings: $1.4M ($1.2M)
- Zach Putnam: $1,117,500 ($900K)
- Jake Petricka: $825K ($900K)
- Total: $27.74M ($27.6M)
I had a feeling that Gonzalez was going to blow up his estimates. He was supposed to earn $5.1 million with Baltimore before the Orioles cut him at the end of spring training, and he threw 135 effective innings with the White Sox. I didn’t necessarily think he would receive the raise that he did, but I expected it to be in the ballpark of the salary he expected in 2016.
And yet the individual discrepancies balanced each other out. The estimated total still came within about $150,000 of the actual, so the projections remain useful as ever, at least in the aggregate.
While Yoan Moncada received the bulk of the attention at the White Sox’ mini-camp for young hitters this week, there is evidence that he had company.
Take Zack Collins, for instance. When the White Sox drafted him with the 10th overall pick, the larger draft analyst community figured Collins wouldn’t be long for catching duties. The White Sox have maintained that they have no such plans to move him, and White Sox catching instructor John Orton went a step further after his first impression:
"I thought his hands work good, and he blocked the ball pretty well. He doesn't look stiff back there," said Orton, speaking about Collins during this week's hitters' minicamp at Camelback Ranch. "So right away I was pleasantly surprised."
“Everyone talked about his bat, which is his strength. But I think he's going to be a very good catcher. I see no reason why he shouldn't be an above-average Major League catcher someday."
The White Sox provided video evidence of Collins’ receiving, if you’re a show-me kind of person:
And then there’s Charlie Tilson, who’s trying to get back into a groove after his hamstring fell off the bone like a well-cooked rib. The mini-camp was his first documented baseball action since he underwent surgery in early August, and Dan Hayes says Tilson is making the strides required at this point in his rehabilitation:
"I can’t complain," Tilson said. "The rehab process has been going good. I'm still working through it. I'm able to pretty much compete and participate in everything, but there's still some barriers I've got to break. So I'm taking it one day at a time. But I'm really confident in the timeline I've got right now and hopefully I can get out here early and make an impact for the team."
Matt Davidson’s season also ended in the middle of his White Sox debut in 2016, and he also sounds like he’s in full working order after his broken foot. Todd Steverson is pulling for him:
"Sadly enough, Matty got cut short after Game 1 like quite a few of our guys last year. I really am proud of Matty. I've been here ever since he came into the organization, and we've been in close communication throughout the time he has been here."
To watch him struggle the first few years over there in Triple-A [Charlotte], to be able to bounce back and make his way back to the big leagues was a positive. You can't say anything other than it's a positive for not only him, but as an organization helping him along and [getting him] back to where he was when we acquired him. He's in a good place, it seems like right now. His mindset and physicality are all there."