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White Sox Minor League Update: May 6, 2018

It was a day to forget for Kopech, but Eloy keeps mashing

Eloy Jimenez has six home runs in just 17 games this season at Birmingham.

Columbus Clippers (4) Charlotte Knights (3)

Charlie Tilson: 1-for-5, 0 BB, 0 K

Kevan Smith: 1-for-4, 0 BB, 0 K

Patrick Leonard: 0-for-4, 0 BB, 1 K

Casey Gillaspie: 2-for-4, 1 HR, 0 BB, 1 K **MVP**

Michael Kopech: 3 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 3 K

Kopech’s day was short-lived, as he could not find the strike zone. In three innings of work, the righthander had 66 pitches and only 34 were strikes. Since Charlotte has had a inordinate amount of call-ups this early in the season, there was not much to watch for after Kopech was lifted. Kevan Smith continued his hot streak with a single in four at-bats. Meanwhile, Casey Gillaspie, who was taken off the 40-man roster, finally hit his first home run of the year in the loss. Coming into the game, Gillaspie had an isolated power of .043, which shows why he has a dreary future with the White Sox.

Tennessee Smokies (6) Birmingham Barons (2)

Tito Polo: 1-for-4, 1 R, 0 BB, 2 K

Zack Collins: 0-for-2, 2 BB, 2 K

Eloy Jimenez: 2-for-3, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 0 K **MVP**

Matt Rose: 0-for-4, 0 BB, 1 K

Jameson Fisher: 0-for-4, 0 BB, 0 K

Ian Clarkin: 5 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

If Eloy Jimenez hits a home run, does a Barons loss even matter? Jimenez hit his sixth home run in the Barons’ 6-2 defeat. Like Kopech in AAA, Jimenez should not be in AA; it is clear he is above the competition. On the pitching side, Ian Clarkin continues to struggle. He has a 5.39 FIP, and his K/BB is an abysmal 1.18. In what still is a crowded Birmingham starting rotation, Ian Clarkin is becoming the weak link.

Winston Salem Dash (5) Buies Creek Astros (3)

Joel Booker: 0-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB, 0 K

Luis Alexander Basabe: 0-for-1, 3 BB, 1 K

Blake Rutherford: 1-for-4, 2 RBI, 0 BB, 1 K

Micker Adolfo: 0-for-3, 0 BB, 0 K

Gavin Sheets: 0-for-3, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K

Yeyson Yrizarri: 4-for-4, 2 RBI, 0 BB, 0 K

Dylan Cease: 6 IP, 8 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K **MVP**

Winston-Salem was able to take the win 5-3 after a strong performance from Dylan Cease. He did allow 10 runners, but he was able to go six innings. Cease has the arsenal to be a premier pitcher in the majors, but what is lacking is his ability to go deep in games. The more times Cease reaches six innings, the more likely it is he will get a promotion to Birmingham. He is averaging 5.4 innings per start, but that needs to be more than six if Cease wants to be considered a viable starting pitching prospect. Yrizarri was a close second for MVP of the game. He has struggled at the plate this season, but his 4-for-4 performance was the highlight for the Dash bats.

Kannapolis Intimidators (4) Hagerstown Suns (3)

Laz Rivera: 1-for-4, 2 R, 0 BB, 0 K

Craig Dedelow: 1-for-4, 0 BB, 0 K

Tate Blackman: 0-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB, 0 K

Anthony Villa: 1-for-3, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K **MVP**

Parker Rigler: 4 23 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Jose Nin: 1 13 IP, 1 H, 0 BB, 1 K

Kannapolis seemed to have too much Cinco de Mayo fun, as the starting lineup was missing key hitters. Even with some absences, the I’s came out with the 4-3 win. Anthony Villa was the only hitter to drive in a run, as three Hagerstown errors accounted for half of Kannapolis’ offense. Villa has been an afterthought for many, even though he is hitting .368. Tate Blackman and Laz Rivera continue to get one base seemingly every game. Blackman’s OBP is .379 and Rivera’s is .386.