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White Sox Minor League Update: May 1, 2018

Michael Kopech was solid for Charlotte, but Winston-Salem’s starter stole the show

Keep on Rolling: Knights RHP Michael Kopech earned a quality start while striking out six over six innings of work.
(Laura Wolff/Charlotte Knights)

Leading off, a good read on Winston-Salem manager and former MLB SS Omar Vizquel’s early managerial career. Vizquel has hopes to manage in the majors soon, but is enjoying his time helping develop young players in the White Sox’s system.

Also, some injury updates from White Sox general manager Rick Hahn during his media session prior to Tuesday’s game vs the St. Louis Cardinals: Luis Robert will play extended spring games beginning mid-to-late May, then join the Dash at the end of the month or in early June. Hahn also said Alec Hansen (forearm soreness) will throw his first bullpen early next week, then join Birmingham.

Gwinnett Stripers 8, Charlotte Knights 6

Charlie Tilson (.222): 1-for-5, 2 R

Jose Rondon (.287): 2-for-5, 2B, 1 RBI, 2 R

Matt Skole (.242): 2-for-4, 2B, 1 RBI, 1 R

Kevan Smith (.282): 3-for-4, HR (2), 2 RBI ***MVP***

Juan Perez (.258): 2-for-4, 3B, SB (6)

Michael Kopech (2.67 ERA): 6 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 6 K

BS: Gregory Infante (2): 1 IP, 4 H, 4 ER

The Stripers scored four runs in the top of the ninth, including a 428-ft HR from former Blue Jays All-Star Jose Bautista, as Gregory Infante blew the save and a win for Michael Kopech. Kopech struck out six in six innings of work, but gave up seven hits and three earned runs along the way. He discussed his performance after the game, which you can watch here. Catcher Kevan Smith delivered three of the Knights’s 11 hits, including his second home run of the season.

Winston-Salem Dash 9, Lynchburg Hillcats 0

Mitch Roman (.317): 1-for-4, 2B, 1 R

Blake Rutherford (.342): 2-for-5, 1 RBI, 1 R, 2 SB (5)

Micker Adolfo (.319): 2-for-3, 2 2B, 1 RBI, 2 R

Zach Remillard (.286): 3-for-5, 2B, 1 RBI, 2 R, SB (2)

Nate Nolan (.163): 1-for-4, HR (2), 3 RBI

Alex Call (.225): 1-for-4, HR (2), 1 RBI

W: Dylan Cease (3-1, 2.05 ERA), 7 IP, 2 H, 12 K ***MVP***

RHP Dylan Cease was nearly untouchable in this one, sitting down 18 straight at one point while going a career-high seven innings and striking out a career-high 12 batters. Cease threw 101 pitches, 74 for strikes. The Dash bats gave Cease more than enough support, with a 13-hit attack. C Nate Nolan and CF Alex Call each hit their second homers of the season, while 3B Zach Remillard had three hits of his own. RF Blake Rutherford carried his strong April into May with a pair of hits and a pair of stolen bases.

Kannapolis Intimidators 8, Hickory Crawdads 5

Luis Gonzalez (.326): 3-for-5, 3B, 2 R

Justin Yurchak (.218): 2-for-5, 2 RBI

Craig Dedelow (.237): 1-for-5, 2B, 1 R

Evan Skoug (.159): 1-for-3, 2B, 1 RBI, 2 R, 1 BB, SB (2)

Michael Hickman (.246): 2-for-4, 2B, 1 RBI, 1 R

Johan Cruz (.226): 2-for-3, 1 R, 1 BB

Tyler Frost (.276): 1-for-3, HR (5), 3 RBI, 1 BB ***MVP***

Parker Rigler (1.80 ERA): 4 2/3 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 6 K

W: Yelmison Peralta (1-0, 3.00 ERA), 2 1/3 IP, 3 H, 3 K

Kannapolis jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead after two innings before Hickory tied it after the top of the fifth inning. But the I’s were having none of that, plating four more runs over the next three innings to seal the victory. RF Tyler Frost’s three-run homer in the in the second inning, his fifth bomb of the season, earned him MVP honors. Meanwhile, CF Luis Gonzalez continues his recent tear with three more hits, including a triple, to raise his batting average to .326.