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White Sox Minor League Update: June 11, 2019

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Five teams, seven games, four wins for the farm

Luis Robert: He’s good, folks.
Hannah Stone/@BhamBarons

Syracuse Mets 15, Charlotte Knights 8

Justin Nicolino: 4 ⅓ IP, 11 H, 9 R, 7 ER, 4 BB, 3 K
Caleb Frare: ⅔ IP, 3 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP
Adam Engel (CF): 2-for-5, 2 R, 1 3B, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 K **MVP**
Jon Jay (DH): 0-for-5, 1 K
Paulo Orlando (LF): 1-for-4, 2 K
Daniel Palka (RF): 2-for-5, 1 R, 2 K
Zack Collins (1B): 1-for-2, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 1 K
Alcides Escobar (SS): 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI
Seby Zavala (C): 0-for-3, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 E
Danny Mendick (2B): 3-for-4, 2 R, 1 RBI

The Knights clawed their way back from a 9-3 deficit to threaten at 9-8, but Caleb Frare had his worst outing of the year and put the game out of reach with a six-run seventh that included two home runs and started and ended with a Tim Tebow plate appearance (HBP, strikeout). Tebow singled twice, both times off Nicolino, for those rubberneckers out there.

Zack Collins hit an RBI double, scoring Palka after his single in the fourth inning. In the fifth, the Knights added two more after Danny Mendick singled and Adam Engel hit his sixth home run of the year. The sixth was where it really got interesting, and all with two outs: Collins walked and Alcides Escobar hit his 14th double to score him. Seby Zavala walked, Mendick singled again to drive in Escobar, then Engel cleared the bases with a triple. A wild pitch brought in Engel. Unfortunately, that was all the Knights were able to muster, but Charlotte remains seven games above .500 with a 35-28 record.


Game One — Mobile BayBears 5, Birmingham Barons 3

Matt Tomshaw: 3 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K (L, 2-2)
Hunter Schryver: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
Luis Robert (DH): 3-for-3, 1 R, 1 BB **MVP**
Nick Madrigal (2B): 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI
Luis González (CF): 1-for-4, 1 RBI, 1 CS
Gavin Sheets (1B): 1-for-3, 1 2B
Blake Rutherford (RF): 0-for-2, 1 BB
Ti’Quan Forbes (3B): 2-for-3, 1 CS
Trey Michalczewski (LF): 1-for-3, 1 K

Game Two — Birmingham Barons 4, Mobile BayBears 1

Kyle Kubat: 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 K (W, 4-2)
Alec Hansen: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
Luis Robert (CF): 2-for-4, 1 RBI
Nick Madrigal (2B): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SB
Luis Basabe (LF): 1-for-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI
Gavin Sheets (1B): 0-for-3, 1 BB
Blake Rutherford (RF): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 BB
Luis González (DH): 1-for-2, 1 BB, 1 K
Laz Rivera (SS): 3-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI **MVP**

Matt Tomshaw was brilliant in his last start, going six scoreless and giving up only two hits, but was not as good in the opener of Birmingham’s doubleheader today. Tomshaw is one of a handful of pitchers in the system bouncing between starting and relieving, and has been much better in a larger sample size out of the bullpen. His three earned runs all came in the first inning on a Jhoan Urena home run; the fourth came in the second after a Ramon Torres throwing error followed by a top-Angels-prospect Jo Adell double. Lefty Hunter Schryver had a lengthy stretch where he was untouchable — he gave up five total earned runs between April and May — then faltered recently, giving up runs in five straight appearances. Here, though, Schryver bounced back with two scoreless, allowing one baserunner via Brandon Sandoval double.

The Luis Robert show is back in business after a crushing 0-for-12 stretch and a couple of rainouts. Turns out, that 0-for-12 does NOT mean that Robert has forgotten how to hit baseballs, because he hit three of them for singles in the opener. He also drew a walk for his fourth appearance on the basepaths in that game. His batting average rose from a measly .319 to a decent .333.

Meanwhile, the Nick Madrigal Show, airing directly after the Luis Robert Show, is ALSO going quite, quite well. Madrigal had two hits, including a triple that scored Robert (inject it into my veins); Madrigal’s average dropped from .667 pre-opener to .625 post. This effort gave him 10 hits in 16 at-bats with Birmingham. This is, as we say in the biz, “good.”

Luis González knocked in a run, Ti’Quan Forbes gathered two hits, Gavin Sheets hit a double, and Trey Michalczewski singled in the game one loss.

The nightcap was a different story, because it was a different game, and different things happen in different games. Kyle Kubat finally fell to earth in his last start, giving up seven runs in just over three innings, but he re-ascended to orbit with six innings of no-earned-run-ball. The one BayBears run came after a throwing error by Forbes at third, followed by a run-scoring single. Alec Hansen came on to finish up the game in the seventh and had no problem — fly out, strikeout, pop out.

Luis Robert increased his batting average from .333 after the opener to .338. It’s good. He’s good. Madrigal did not get an extra-base hit in this game, but he did single and draw a walk. Luis Basabe made his return from the injured list, a sentence I have definitely typed before, and hit a ding-dong double to score Madrigal (that’s what I call it when you hit a double in your return from the injured list to score Madrigal).

Blake Rutherford both singled and drew an 11-pitch walk. He’s hitting an even .400 over his last 10 games, and his season line has risen to .232/.277/.321, which is still objectively not great but which IS relatively great, considering how badly he struggled in the first two months. A third of his season total of walks have come in the last 10 games, and close to the same percentage of hits.

Meanwhile, if you looked up at any point during the game, Laz Rivera was probably on base. The shortstop had three hits, all singles, and knocked in Rutherford in the sixth. Now, I will stop typing before this becomes a 2,000-word essay about the Barons doubleheader today. You’re welcome.


Game 1 — Winston-Salem Dash 9, Salem Red Sox 3

Jorgan Cavanerio: 6 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K
JJ Muno (LF): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 SB, 1 CS
Mitch Roman (2B): 2-for-3, 2 R, 1 BB
Steele Walker (CF): 2-for-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K **MVP**
Jameson Fisher (1B): 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 K
Zach Remillard (SS): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 2B
Carlos Perez (C): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K
Jordan George (DH): 0-for-2, 1 R, 1 BB
Yeyson Yrizarri (3B): 1-for-3, 1 K

Game Two — Winston-Salem Dash 7, Salem Red Sox 2

Jake Elliott: 3 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
Codi Heuer: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 K, 2 WP
Luis Ledo: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K
JJ Muno (LF): 2-for-2, 2 R, 1 3B, 2 BB
Mitch Roman (2B): 3-for-4, 1 R, 2 2B, 2 RBI **MVP**
Steele Walker (CF): 2-for-3, 2 RBI, 1 CS
Craig Dedelow (RF): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K
Evan Skoug (C): 1-for-2, 2 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
Jordan George (DH): 0-for-1, 1 R, 2 BB
Travis Moniot (3B): 0-for-3, 1 BB, 1 K

The opener was a slog for the Dash, but a good kind of slog. Six-and-a-half innings took 2:27 to play (that’s hours and minutes, not minutes and seconds, just to be totally clear), but Winston-Salem came out on top, and that’s probably what really matters. They scored two in the second, three in the third, and four in the fourth before calling it a day on that front, and nine runs were more than enough to cover the Salem Red Sox’s offensive efforts. Carlos Perez hit a home run; Muno, Walker, and Roman all reached twice; Walker, Fisher, and Remillard all hit doubles. On the mound, Jorgan Cavanerio turned in a quality start, giving up one pesky three-run home run in the sixth to complete the scoring.

The nightcap was a bullpen day, with mostly-reliever-but-sometimes-starter Jake Elliott on the mound. Elliott went two, giving up one run on three hits, then was relieved by Codi Heuer, who throws so hard I can’t believe people don’t just scream and dive out of the batter’s box on principle, which is what I would be doing. Luis Ledo throws similarly hard, and it’s no wonder the Red Sox couldn’t get much going against them. At the plate, Muno again shone, hitting a leadoff triple. Roman almost collected three doubles, but was thrown out at second trying to get that third and was forced to accept just two doubles and a single. Walker’s bat is starting to come around, and his two singles brought his average up to .236. Dedelow slammed a ball off the center field wall for a double, and Evan Skoug perfectly placed one off the right field foul pole for a home run.


Kannapolis Intimidators 5, Greenville Drive 4

Johan Dominguez: 5 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 6 BB, 6 K
Bennett Sousa: 1 ⅓ IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
J.B. Olson: 1 ⅔ IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 K
Ian Dawkins (CF): 1-for-5, 1 RBI, 1 CS, 1 outfield assist
Lenyn Sosa (SS): 0-for-4, 1 BB, 1 K
Alex Destino (RF): 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 BB
Bryce Bush (DH): 0-for-4, 3 K
Corey Zangari (1B): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K
Luis Curbelo (3B): 2-for-3, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K **MVP**
Michael Hickman (C): 1-for-4, 1 2B, 1 K
Ramon Beltre (2B): 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI

All-Star Johan Dominguez worked around six walks, Bennett Sousa had a rare stumble out of the bullpen, and the Intimidators held it together long enough to both play and win a baseball game. Ian Dawkins technically reached base twice, as the second time came on an error, so it counts in my heart if not the box score. Alex Destino, Corey Zangari, and Michael Hickman all doubled, and Luis Curbelo hit his fifth home run of the season. All of them have had pretty rough seasons up to this point, so it’s good to see a little mashing commence. Wilber Perez and J.B. Olson both made scoreless appearances, Olson going 1 ⅔ innings and allowing no baserunners, Perez going one and allowing one.


DSL Diamondbacks 3, DSL White Sox 1

Ronaldo Guzman: 4 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1 WP (L, 0-1)
Jesus Rondón: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB
Anthony Espinoza (3B): 1-for-4, 1 RBI **MVP**
Benyamin Bailey (LF): 0-for-2, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 SB
Andres Rosario (RF): 0-for-1, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 K
Enoy Jiménez (2B): 1-for-3, 1 K

The DSL White Sox were two-hit, and Enoy Jiménez had one of them; Eloy’s 18-year-old brother played second base and was caught stealing that same base after his single. Lots of outs in the DSL come on the basepaths, and the Sox’s only RBI came on one of these. Anthony Espinoza, the 17-year-old who’s batting .294/.381/.441, singled in Andres Rosario from one of his two walks and then was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double.

Ronaldo Guzman, who is 16!!! 16 years old!! made his second start and pitched well, giving up one run over four and throwing just one wild pitch, which, in the DSL, isn’t bad. I know I keep mentioning these player’s ages, and that’s because they are personally offensive to me, someone who keeps getting further away from 16. Carlos Mola pitched three innings in relief, giving up two runs, only one being earned due to Jefferson Mendoza’s error behind the plate. Jesus Rondón pitched a scoreless inning in relief, despite giving up a hit and a walk.