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2021 South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 35: Emilio Vargas

There’s something the White Sox have seen in this big righthander — and the reveal is coming soon to Charlotte

Arizona Diamondbacks Photo Day Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Emilio Vargas

Right-Handed Starting Pitcher
230 pounds
Age: 24
SSS rank among all right-handed starting pitchers in the system: 9

Emilio Vargas was claimed off of waivers from the Arizona Diamondbacks last November and seems to have earned a fair amount of esteem from White Sox brass, as evidenced by an invite to major league camp this spring. (He saw no official action before being sent designated for Triple-A Charlotte.)

Vargas has no major league experience, and has not climbed higher than Double-A in his career. If the righthander’s assignment holds, he’ll make his Triple-A debut when the Charlotte Knights season opens in May.

He had a 3.84 ERA and 1.13 WHIP in 20 starts split between rookie ball and Double-A in 2019. It was his second stint with Arizona’s Double-A Jackson Generals, and his numbers remained largely the same between 2018 and 2019, although his ERA dipped from 4.04 to 3.78 and his record improved to 5-3 in 17 starts in 2019.

Vargas has a career 3.48 ERA in 127 games (99 starts) over seven minor league seasons.

There’s not a lot that distinguishes him, beyond being a reliable, durable starter. Vargas fits the bill as fodder for the Triple-A rotation and might just have a ceiling as a AAAA-type guy. However, there’s something the White Sox saw that prompted the waiver claim, and it’ll be interesting to find out what his major league time at Camelback Ranch, and ongoing work with the Knights coaching staff, may yield.