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White Sox Minor League Update: June 23, 2021

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Timely hitting propels the organization to an undefeated day

Octuple burger: Jake Burger tallied eight total bases during his 4-for-5 performance for the Knights.
Laura Wolff/Charlotte Knights

It was a monster night for the Knights, especially Jake Burger, who got the start at second base. Thanks to its offensive explosion, Charlotte pulled away with a lopsided victory.

In the second, Jake Burger and Mikie Mahtook hit back-to-back singles to open the inning, and an error on Mahtook’s single allowed Burger to score. That was the first run of the game, and later in the inning, Seby Zavala drove in Mahtook with a sacrifice fly.

The top of the fourth started the exact same way, as Burger and Mahtook opened the inning with two consecutive singles. Zavala drew a walk to load the bases, and Matt Reynolds drove in a run with a ground out. Then, Marco Hernández blew the game wide open with a double, and Blake Rutherford added another insurance run with a single. At this point, the Knights held a commanding lead of 6-0.

On the other side of the ball, starter Alex McRae had a great start. In five innings, McRae struck out five, and his control was strong (50 strikes of 73 pitches). McRae also did a good job of limiting sharp contact, and no runs were scored on his watch.

Meanwhile, though the Knights had a large lead, they were not done. In the fifth, Gavin Sheets singled, and Burger drove him in with a double to make it 7-0. Zavala later hit his second sacrifice fly to extend the lead to eight. That was more than enough runs to win this game.

Not that it was necessary, but Burger padded the lead in the ninth with his fourth hit. This time, it was a home run.

Matt Tomshaw struggled in the bottom of the ninth, but by that point, the result of this game was not in question. So, the Knights held on rather easily for an upset victory over the Sounds, who are near the top of the Southeast Division standings.

Poll

Who was the Knights MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 94%
    Jake Burger: 4-for-5, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 4 R
    (140 votes)
  • 0%
    Mikie Mahtook: 3-for-5, RBI
    (0 votes)
  • 5%
    Alex McRae: 5 IP, 0 R, 5 H, 1 BB, 5 K
    (8 votes)
148 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Knights Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    Matt Reynolds: 1-for-5, RBI, 2 K
    (2 votes)
  • 8%
    Blake Rutherford: 1-for-4, RBI, K
    (9 votes)
  • 89%
    Matt Tomshaw: 1 IP, 5 ER, 4 H, 1 BB, 1 K
    (93 votes)
104 votes total Vote Now

The Barons fell behind early, but they stormed back and ultimately walked it off to wrap up a thrilling game in Birmingham.

Blake Battenfield started for the Barons, and it was not his night. After a leadoff single and a fielder’s choice that did not yield any outs, Battenfield was in trouble in the first. With one out, Pensacola cashed in. A single by Nick Fortes loaded the bases, and Battenfield hit a batter with the bases loaded. Then, Lazaro Alonso drove in a pair with a single, and all of a sudden, the Barons trailed by a score of 3-0.

The second inning was also a struggle, but this time it was a direct result of poor fielding. With two outs and nobody on base, third baseman JJ Muno made an error that extended the inning. A double put runners on second and third. Then, JJ Bleday, who was drafted fourth overall in 2019, hit a single to drive in a pair of unearned runs to make it 5-0.

However, the Barons did not go down quietly. In the fourth, Birmingham had four consecutive hits by Carlos Pérez (single), (Indiana Hoosier) Craig Dedelow (single), Jameson Fisher (triple), and Laz Rivera (home run). Just like that, it was a 5-4 game.

The score remained 5-0 until the bottom of the seventh, when the Barons used a single and back-to-back one-out walks to load the bases. Pérez had an opportunity to turn the game around, and he hit a grounder that gave Pensacola a chance to turn two. Pensacola got the out at second, but the throw to first was off the mark, and the Barons instead scored two to take a 6-5 lead.

In the eighth, Pensacola tied it with a two-out single, but Micker Adolfo did not allow the game to get to extra innings. In the bottom of the ninth, Adolfo launched his 11th home run of the year to send the crowd home happy. It was Adolfo’s only hit of the game, but it could not have come at a better time.

Poll

Who was the Barons MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 38%
    Micker Adolfo: 1-for-4, BB, walk-off HR
    (38 votes)
  • 45%
    Jameson Fisher: 3-for-4, 3B, 2B, 2 RBI
    (45 votes)
  • 2%
    Laz Rivera: 2-for-4, HR, 2 RBI
    (2 votes)
  • 14%
    Peter Tago: 3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 5 K
    (14 votes)
99 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Barons Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 47%
    Blake Battenfield: 3 IP, 5 R (3 ER), 6 H, 1 BB, 1 K
    (35 votes)
  • 34%
    Romy González: 0-for-5, 2 K
    (25 votes)
  • 17%
    JJ Muno: 0-for-3, BB, 2 K, error
    (13 votes)
73 votes total Vote Now

The Dash raced out of the starting blocks and led 9-3 at one point in this game. Though Asheville made it interesting toward the end, Winston-Salem held on for the win.

Ian Dawkins and Yoelqui Céspedes led off the game by drawing back-to-back walks. Alex Destino drove in Dawkins with a sacrifice fly, and Lenyn Sosa drove in Céspedes with a single. Just like that, the Dash had an early 2-0 lead.

Kaleb Roper was the starting pitcher for the Dash, and he struggled to keep the ball in the park. In the first, Joe Pérez homered to cut the Tourists’ deficit in half. Roper also allowed a pair of solo home runs in the third. Thanks to Destino’s second sacrifice fly of the evening, though, the score was tied 3-3 after three.

In the fourth, Evan Skoug launched a home run to put the Dash back on top. Then, a Duke Ellis single, a Dawkins walk, and a Céspedes single loaded the bases with one out. Yolbert Sánchez stepped up to the plate with a chance to add some key insurance runs, and he took advantage. Though Sánchez was thrown out trying to advance to second on his single, all three runners scored, and the Dash led, 7-3.

Lenyn Sosa added a pair of additional insurance runs in the fifth with a two-run homer, his fifth of the season. The middle relievers struggled, but Brian Glowicki slammed the door shut to preserve the lead. Glowicki struck out four of the five batters he faced to end the Tourists’ hopes of completing the comeback.

Poll

Who was the Dash MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 9%
    Brian Glowicki: 1 2⁄3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 4 K
    (9 votes)
  • 32%
    Yoelqui Céspedes: 2-for-4, BB, 3 R
    (32 votes)
  • 20%
    Yolbert Sánchez: 2-for-4, 3 RBI
    (20 votes)
  • 10%
    Evan Skoug: 2-for-4, HR, 2B
    (10 votes)
  • 28%
    Lenyn Sosa: 2-for-4, HR, 3 RBI
    (28 votes)
99 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Dash Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 6%
    Tyler Osik: 0-for-4, K
    (4 votes)
  • 23%
    Luis Curbelo: 0-for-4, K
    (15 votes)
  • 34%
    Kaleb Roper: 3 1⁄3 IP, 3 ER, 5 H, 1 BB, 4 K
    (22 votes)
  • 34%
    Edgar Navarro: 1 1⁄3 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 0 K
    (22 votes)
63 votes total Vote Now

In the lowest-scoring game among the White Sox affiliates, the Cannon Ballers continued their recovery from their ice-cold start to the season. Kannapolis came out victorious thanks to a late rally against Fayetteville.

José Rodríguez led off with a double in the bottom of the first, and he advanced to third on a ground out. Then, Luis Mieses drove in Popeye with a sacrifice fly to score the first run of the game.

Chase Solesky started for the Cannon Ballers, and his first two innings on the mound went about as well as possible, striking out five with no hits. However, the third inning did not go as smoothly. After a walk and a single, with two outs, Jordan Brewer drove in a pair with a two-out double to put the Woodpeckers on top. However, that was the only damage the Woodpeckers did against Solesky, who lasted 4 13 innings and struck out eight.

The score remained 2-1 until the bottom of the seventh, when the Cannon Ballers wasted no time rallying. Harvin Mendoza, Caberea Weaver, and Samil Polanco hit three consecutive singles to open the inning. Polanco’s single drove in Mendoza to tie the game. Then, Daniel Millwee laid down a bunt, and a throwing error by Fayetteville’s pitcher resulted in the best-case scenario for the Cannon Ballers. Two runs scored on the play, everyone was safe, and Kannapolis led by a score of 4-2.

The Woodpeckers got one of those runs back in the eighth. With the bases loaded and two outs, second baseman Bryan Ramos made a fielding error that allowed one run to score. However, reliever McKinley Moore pitched out of the jam to preserve the lead. The ninth inning was drama-free, so the Cannon Ballers held on for a 4-3 victory.

Poll

Who was the Cannon Ballers MVP?

This poll is closed

  • 30%
    Harvin Mendoza: 2-for-4, R
    (18 votes)
  • 10%
    José Rodríguez: 2-for-4, 2B. R, three errors
    (6 votes)
  • 3%
    Samil Polanco: 1-for-3, RBI, R
    (2 votes)
  • 18%
    McKinley Moore: 1 2⁄3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB, 1 K
    (11 votes)
  • 37%
    Ty Madrigal: 2 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K
    (22 votes)
59 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Who was the Cannon Ballers Cold Cat?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    Bryan Ramos: 0-for-3, BB, error
    (5 votes)
  • 89%
    Lency Delgado: 0-for-4, 4 K
    (41 votes)
  • 0%
    Luis Mieses: 0-for-3, RBI
    (0 votes)
46 votes total Vote Now