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White Sox Minor League Update: May 27, 2021

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Birmingham gets two-hit and wins, Winston-Salem gets three-hit and loses, up is down, left is ... still left actually

Laz Rivera provided the crucial offense the Barons needed.
Kim Contreras/South Side Sox
Knights/Tides linescore
Batting section of box score
Fielding and pitching section of box score

Box score link

Offensively, this was a decent game. Pitching-wise, not so much. Félix Paulino, who was notably cursed by James Fegan just prior to his first start of the season, was staked to a 4-0 lead after the top of the second inning and immediately gave it right back. Then, when a comedy of errors involving Zach Remillard and a futile fielder’s choice gifted the Knights a run back in the third, Alex McRae in relief gave that right back too, plus three more. Charlotte kept chipping away for the next couple of innings, but couldn’t overcome those eight early runs. Jace Fry pitched a scoreless inning in his first rehab appearance returning from a back injury, and Connor Sadzeck is now Connor Happyzeck (and has never heard that before and never will again) as he added a scoreless inning of his own. Hunter Schryver also appeared but gave up two runs.

No Jake Burger bomb today — Tim Beckham manned third in his stead — and no Gavin Sheets, who took the day off after his clench-worthy tumble into the dugout while catching a foul ball yesterday. Even so, two walks, a Beckham RBI single, and catcher Nate Nolan’s second home run of the season combined for the four-run second, and Charlotte scored once in each of the next three innings on the aforementioned fielder’s choice, a force out, and a GIDP. The Nolan home run and a Matt Reynolds triple were the only extra-base hits of the game for Charlotte, and they went 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position.

Luis González was pinch-hit for by Mikie Mahtook and Nick Williams was pinch-hit for by Reynolds, both in the fourth inning.

Poll

Who was the Knights MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 28%
    Nate Nolan: 1-for-4, HR, R, 2 RBI, 2 K
    (22 votes)
  • 48%
    Tim Beckham: 2-for-3, R, RBI, BB
    (38 votes)
  • 23%
    Blake Rutherford: 2-for-5, R, K
    (18 votes)
  • 0%
    Matt Reynolds: 1-for-3, 3B, RBI
    (0 votes)
78 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Knights Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 17%
    Félix Paulino: 2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 2 BB, K
    (12 votes)
  • 76%
    Alex McRae: 2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 BB, K (L)
    (53 votes)
  • 5%
    Marco Hernández: 0-for-5, 2 K
    (4 votes)
69 votes total Vote Now

Barons/Trash Pandas linescore
Batting section of box score
Pitching section of box score

Box score link

Pitching was the story in Madison, Ala. tonight, as the Barons snuck past the Rocket City Trash Pandas, 3-2. Actually, Laz Rivera’s eighth-inning, game-winning solo shot was the story, but as that ancient wisdom says, both things can be true.

The Barons pulled this one out at the last second despite ending up with just two hits, obviously the most important one off of Laz’s bat, the other a futile fifth-inning single from Craig Dedelow. To be fair, Denny Brady started this one for the Trash Pandas, and Bradys are known for being exceptionally gifted at whatever they do, whether that’s baseball, football, or angrily tweeting about the Chicago White Sox. Also, Boomer Biegalski got the tough-luck loss, throwing FIVE innings in relief and giving up just one run on two hits (one of those being the Rivera dinger). Boomer Biegalski! What a night.

Konnor Pilkington was excellent in five innings of work, giving up two runs on five hits (both runs on solo dongs), striking out three and walking zero. Pilkington’s success so far in Birmingham is encouraging after a 2019 campaign with the Dash marred by poor control and laborious innings. He’s still walking people at a similar rate (obviously in much fewer innings this year so far), so if he can lower that in addition to keeping the ones he does put on from scoring the way he has been, that could be a boon to a system that’s looking thin on high-minors pitching.

The bullpen was just stellar behind him. Four guys threw an inning each in relief, going Peter Tago (no baserunners, two strikeouts), Zach Muckenhirn (no baserunners, THREE strikeouts and the win), Bennett Sousa (one walk, one strikeout, hold), and finally Ofreidy Gómez (no baserunners, one strikeout, save). See? Who needs offense!

Poll

Who was the Barons MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 16%
    Laz Rivera: 1-for-3, HR, R, RBI, K
    (11 votes)
  • 24%
    Konnor Pilkington: 5 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 3 K
    (16 votes)
  • 59%
    The Bullpen: 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, BB, 7 K (W, H, S)
    (39 votes)
66 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Barons Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 41%
    Micker Adolfo: 0-for-4, 2 K
    (26 votes)
  • 3%
    Ti’Quan Forbes: 0-for-4, 2 K
    (2 votes)
  • 54%
    This is an unfair poll
    (34 votes)
62 votes total Vote Now

Dash/Crawdads linescore
Batter section of box score
Pitching section of box score

Box score link

Dash bats were quieted today by the Hickory Crawdads, owners of one of the strongest original logos in MiLB. All the players I said nice things about at FutureSox today went a combined 1-for-15, Alex Destino’s first-inning double my one face-saving grace. The Dash had two more hits all game: one a fifth-inning double by center fielder Duke Ellis, the other an eight-inning single by center fielder Duke Ellis. Yolbert Sánchez’s leadoff walk in the ninth went nowhere and represented the only other Dash baserunner of the day.

The pitching was actually very good until a late hiccup. Jerry Burke got the start, his first of the season and his second appearance with the Dash, the first coming on May 21 in relief of Davis Martin’s then-no-hitter and resulting in four scoreless innings (three hits). Burke wasn’t quite as sharp tonight, getting dinged for a couple of runs (only one earned though, on Luis Curbelo’s third error at third base), throwing a wild pitch and hitting a batter. Four hits, one walk, and one earned run in five innings will play just fine though, and his Dash ERA stands at 1.00 over nine innings total.

Trey Jeans, whose name is so good I will let it stand without making a joke, was very effective over three innings in relief, allowing just two hits and one walk, striking out one and hitting one. Luke Shilling got the ninth and was not effective, giving up the first two runs of his professional career, which now swells to 8 ⅓ innings. He threw 29 pitches, just 14 for strikes, as he walked two and allowed two hits and three runs; his ERA shoots all the way up to 2.16.

Poll

Who was the Dash MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 50%
    Jeremiah Burke: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 R, ER, BB, 4 K (L)
    (24 votes)
  • 33%
    Trey Jeans: 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, BB, K
    (16 votes)
  • 14%
    Duke Ellis: 2-for-3, K
    (7 votes)
  • 2%
    Alex Destino: 1-for-4, 2B, K
    (1 vote)
48 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Dash Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    Jeremiah Burke: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 R, ER, BB, 4 K (L)
    (0 votes)
  • 72%
    Luis Curbelo: 0-for-4, 2 K
    (34 votes)
  • 27%
    Julie Brady: For cursing several players by posting about them
    (13 votes)
47 votes total Vote Now

Cannon Ballers/Mudcats linescore
Batter part of box score
Pitcher part of linescore

Box score link

This may shock you to hear, but the Cannon Ballers lost tonight, pulling their record down to … well, they’ve won two games. They put up a brave, six-run effort, but a forgettable start by Yoelvin Silven combined with a bullpen not at its best buried Kannapolis. Silven couldn’t make it out of the third, his worst start this season, and although he didn’t walk anybody (silver linings!), he did allow nine hits and six runs. Bailey Horn, the last/fifth-round draft pick from 2020, notched a strikeout for all six outs he recorded, but he did give up three runs (two earned) in-between. Garvin Alston Jr., drafted in round 37 in 2019, had a rougher outing, striking out none in his 1 ⅓ innings, walking four and allowing two hits and three runs, all earned. On the other hand, Jordan Mikel (2020 minor league free agent called up to Kannapolis literally today) and Tyson Messer (2019 draft pick) combined for two scoreless innings, also with six strikeouts. Despite allowing 11 earned runs, the Cannon Ballers did strike out 16. And walk seven. It’s a work in progress.

The good news is there are several Ballers bats that seem to be slowly waking up. Caberea Weaver had a nice three-hit day, capped by his second home run of the year. Lency Delgado added a solo dong of his own. Bryan Ramos, who turned 19 years old in March, has been heating up to the tune of a .331 batting average over his last eight games, not an arbitrary endpoint selected by me at all. He hit his first home run of the season yesterday. Interestingly, he DHed again tonight, a spot he’s becoming familiar with; in 2019, he played the overwhelming majority of innings at third base. This year, he’s only played one game there, playing six at second base and the rest at DH.

Johnabiell Laureano reached base three times, one hit, one walk, and one HBP; he scored twice. Tyler Osik, back with the team after an unsuccessful seven-game stint with the Dash, hit a single and grounded in a run. José Rodriguez, typically the Ballers’ hottest bat, went 0-for-4, as did Benyamin Bailey and Victor Torres. Bailey and Torres also both made errors (with a PB for Torres as well), meaning we are looking onward to tomorrow and better things.

Poll

Who was the Cannon Ballers MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 100%
    Caberea Weaver: 3-for-5, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI
    (41 votes)
  • 0%
    Lency Delgado: 1-for-4, R, RBI, 3 K
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Bryan Ramos: 2-for-4, K
    (0 votes)
  • 0%
    Johnabiell Laureano: 1-for-2, 2 R, BB, HBP
    (0 votes)
41 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Cannon Ballers Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 82%
    Yoelvin Silva: 2 ⅓ IP, 9 H, 6 R, 0 BB, 4 K (L)
    (34 votes)
  • 12%
    Benyamin Bailey: 0-for-4, 2 K, E
    (5 votes)
  • 4%
    Victor Torres: 0-for-4, K, E, PB
    (2 votes)
  • 0%
    José Rodriguez: 0-for-4, R, K
    (0 votes)
41 votes total Vote Now