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Luis Robert promoted to Birmingham

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Zack Burdi will join Robert in Birmingham, and Steele Walker earns a promotion to Winston-Salem

Chicago White Sox Photo Day
Moving on up: Luis Robert is one of the latest White Sox prospects to earn a promotion.
Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images

Luis Robert is being rewarded for tearing the cover off the ball with the Winston-Salem Dash this season, as he is moving up to Class AA Birmingham. After fighting off injuries for much of his time in the organization, Robert is off to a flaming-hot start, as his slash line sits at a crazy .453/.512/.920 after 84 plate appearances. MLB Pipeline ranks Robert fourth among White Sox prospects, eighth among all outfield prospects, and 37th among all prospects. This will be the 21-year-old outfielder’s first experience above Class A+, and he appears to be more than ready for the challenge.

Zack Burdi also earned a promotion to Class AA Birmingham. Burdi was sidelined for much of 2018 due to Tommy John surgery the previous year. He has not gotten many innings lately as a result. He pitched 6 13 innings and allowed two earned runs in the Arizona League last year. In his rehab assignment in Class A Kannapolis, he pitched three innings and allowed three earned runs, though that is a tiny sample size, and his advanced peripherals showed that he was quite unlucky in those innings (0.63 FIP, 1.35 xFIP). The 24-year old right-hander was the second of two 2016 White Sox first round picks. MLB Pipeline ranks him 16th among White Sox prospects. Before Tommy John surgery, Burdi got a decent amount of experience in Class AAA, with 33 13 innings there in 2017 (4.05 ERA, 2.86 FIP, and 2.92 xFIP).

Steele Walker is the last of the major promotions, as he moves up from Class A Kannapolis to Class A+ Winston-Salem. The 2018 second round pick has been cruising right along with Kannapolis, slashing .365/.437/.581 in 87 plate appearances this year. That is not quite a Luis Robert slash line, but he is not too far from that. According to MLB Pipeline, Walker is the White Sox No. 11 prospect.

Moving up to Birmingham with Robert and Burdi is starter Kyle Kubat. Kubat chased a strong 2018 at Winston-Salem (6-3, 3.55 ERA, 1.204 WHIP) with a sizzling start to 2019 (2-0 in four starts, 1.23 ERA, 0.727 WHIP).

Joining Walker in the move from Kannapolis to W-S is imposing reliever Austin Conway. Conway, a 2018 31st rounder, has a 0.00 ERA through five games (six innings), with 13 Ks, three walks and a 0.833 WHIP.

José Nin, meanwhile, is making the jump from Winston-Salem to Charlotte. Nin has pitched in eight games in 2018, with three saves, a 3.65 ERA and 1.135 WHIP. He has 16 Ks against just three walks.

Connor Walsh also makes the jump to Charlotte, from Birmingham. He had a 3.52 ERA in 7 23 innings (six games) for the Barons.