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White Sox Minor League Player of the Month (August 2022): José Rodríguez

With a stellar finish to his season, the slugger is back on track for Charlotte and beyond in 2023

Before his season-ending hamate injury, José Rodríguez had turned the corner in Birmingham and was back on his MLB trajectory.
@JeffAllison2337/Twitter

José Rodríguez’s season is over after hamate bone (hand) surgery after an awkward swing on August 20 so he cannot continue his hot couple of months, but boy, did he make the most of his shortened August. He just about had a 200 wRC+ (198) thanks to a huge increase in power. The nine homers in 17 games were the same number of singles he had. That’s a really fun stat, and he still had four doubles in there, and all of that comes out to a .449 ISO. It took a long time to find that power, but by the end of the year José finished with a .150 mark which is fine for a middle infielder, and we should expect it to be higher next season. With his injury, it seems like a return to the Fall League is out of the question, so hopefully the next time we see him is in Charlotte.

Birmingham Barons

José Rodríguez: .319/.413/.768 — 9 HR, 10 BB, 12 K, 17 R, 17 RBI, 3 SB **Monthly MVP**
Yoelqui Céspedes: .242/.308/.421 — 4 HR, 5 BB, 37 K, 11 R, 10 RBI, 7 SB
Oscar Colás: .288/.351/.490 — 6 HR, 7 BB, 28 K, 18 R, 15 RBI
Sean Burke: 21 IP, 2.57 ERA, 7 BB, 38 K
Matthew Thompson: 17 13 IP, 6.75 ERA, 7 BB, 21 K
Caleb Freeman: 9 IP, 1.00 ERA, 2 BB, 9 K


Charlotte Knights

Lenyn Sosa: Triple-A .380/.446/.760 — 6 HR, 6 BB, 8 K, 8 R, 15 RBI **Monthly MVP**
(MLB: .130/.130/.261 — 1 HR, 0 BB, 9 K)
Yolbert Sánchez: .304/.341/.316 — 4 BB, 8 K, 10 R, 4 RBI, 2 SB
Jake Burger: .315/.403/.463 — 2 HR, 7 BB, 12 K, 8 R, 8 RBI
Jason Bilous: 13 23 IP, 11.20 ERA, 15 BB, 16 K
Kade McClure: 13 IP, 2.77 ERA, 5 BB, 15 K

If you want a runner-up for the monthly MVP, conveniently enough, it is Lenyn Sosa. He had a better wRC+ than José Rodríguez, but a poor stint in MLB and not as many runs produced for Sosa was the difference. Sosa had a slow start in Triple-A and hasn’t looked great in MLB, but he at least has turned it around in Charlotte now, with the power he had in Double-A finally coming back. He had six homers in 13 Triple-A games, with a seventh in MLB. Technically, sandwiched around a short trip to the majors, Sosa had four in a row for the Knights. One slight notation is he only had one other extra-base hit on top of those homers, so it really became homer-or-single type of month. Sosa has cut down on strikeouts, but his time in MLB definitely outed the biggest hole in his game right now, swing-and-miss. He has something to work on and knows what he should do to fix his game; he will just be 23 next year, still a very young prospect for someone on the doorstep of the majors.


Project Birmingham

Bryan Ramos: Double-A .188/.188/.344 — 1 HR, 0 BB, 6 K, 2 R, 4 RBI
(High-A: .311/.380/.475 — 2 HR, 7 BB, 10 K, 13 R, 12 RBI, 1 SB)
Colson Montgomery: Double-A .100/.095/.150 — 0 BB, 6 K, 3 R, 2 RBI
(High-A: .200/.327/.375 — 1 HR, 8 BB, 10 K, 5 R, 4 RBI)
Luis Míeses: Double-A .414/.433/.586 — 1 HR, 0 BB, 1 K, 3 R, 8 RBI
(High-A: .250/.281/.383 — 2 HR, 0 BB, 8 K, 5 R, 6 RBI)
Duke Ellis: Double-A .313/.389/.375 — 2 BB, 6 K, 3 R, 1 RBI, 4 SB
(High-A: .221/.264/.294 — 3 BB, 16 K, 10 R, 2 RBI, 8 SB)
Wes Kath: Double-A .313/.313/.375 — 0 BB, 6 K, 2 RBI
(Low-A: 263/.382/.544 — 4 HR, 11 BB, 23 K, 13 R, 6 RBI)
Wilfred Veras: Double-A .267/.313/.267 — 1 BB, 3 K, 1 R
(Low-A: .333/.342/.507 — 1 HR, 2 BB, 17 K, 8 R, 15 RBI)
Jared Kelley: Double-A 4 IP, 6.75 ERA, 0 BB, 6 K
(Low-A: 13 IP, 4.15 ERA, 12 BB, 11 K)
Kohl Simas: Double-A 3 IP, 12.00 ERA, 1 BB, 3 K
(Low-A: 11 23 IP, 7.71 ERA, 9 BB, 12 K)
Norge Vera: Double-A 2 23 IP, 0.00 ERA, 3 BB, 4 K
(High-A: 3 13 IP, 8.10 ERA, 4 BB, 5 K)
Drew Dalquist: Double-A 2 13 IP, 11.57 ERA, 2 BB, 2 K
(High-A: 12 13 IP, 10.95 ERA, 7 BB, 11 K)
Cristian Mena: Double-A 3 IP, 6.00 ERA, 0 BB, 6 K
(High-A: 9 23 IP, 3.72 ERA, 4 BB, 16 K)


Winston-Salem Dash

Tyler Osik: .382/.444/.727 — 4 HR, 5 BB, 10 K, 9 R, 13 RBI **Monthly MVP**

Tyler Osik is actually in Birmingham now, but nobody would have slotted into the Dash section as a monthly MVP, so we kept him here. Yeah, most players of note are now one level up or one level below; Birmingham should be a very good team to start the year in 2023, though. Osik is becoming more and more like Yermín Mercedes every day. The bat seems to be good, though time in Birmingham will hopefully confirm or deny that, but he doesn’t really have a position. He started out as a first baseman and kind of left fielder but is now learning catcher, very slowly, and is otherwise a DH. I say slowly because he went from playing 73 23 innings of catcher last season to 152 so far this year. He has played the plurality of his games as a DH, just to get his bat into the lineup, and it works for whatever team he is on. The bat has played where he has gone, mostly as a great BABIP player, though in August (and why he is the MVP) there was more pop. The Sox have too many of these types of players ahead of him already and it is tough to see him leapfrogging any of them, but if the bat truly plays in Double-A maybe he will be a smart Rule-5 pick for another team.


Kannapolis Cannon Ballers (2022 Draft Class)

Jordan Sprinkle: .297/.366/.378 — 1 HR, 5 BB, 15 K, 13 R, 3 RBI, 6 SB (4th round pick, $452,900 bonus)
Jacob Burke: .292/.418/.477 — 2 HR, 7 BB, 16 K, 11 R, 10 RBI, 4 SB (11th round pick, $225,000 bonus)
Brooks Baldwin: .203/.272/.230 — 7 BB, 20 K, 11 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB (12th round pick, $125,000 bonus)
Shane Murphy: 5 IP, 3.60 ERA, 3 BB, 2 K (14th round pick, $125,000 bonus)
Jonathan Cannon: 3 IP, 0.00 ERA, 1 BB, 3 K (3rd round pick, $925,000 bonus)
Billy Seidl: 6 IP, 1.50 ERA, 3 BB, 5 K (15th round pick, $100,000 bonus)
Eric Adler: 2 23 IP, 10.13 ERA, 6 BB, 6 K (6th round pick, $200,000 bonus)
Jonah Scolaro: 20 13 IP, 2.21 ERA, 9 BB, 31 K (UDFA) **Monthly MVP**

Kannapolis lost quite a bit of talent to Project Birmingham, it was not just Winston-Salem. So, the draft class and undrafted free agents are up and sucking up at-bats and innings more quickly than in a normal season. UDFA Jonah Scolaro was the best of the bunch in August. He is older, so he skipped the rookie leagues and went straight to Kannapolis once he was signed. He has been pretty good there, and is even in a starting role right now. He came out of Florida State as a reliever, but he pitched in the Atlantic League (Indy ball) as a starter. Scolaro’s slider is his best pitch, and good breaking balls usually mean good things in the lower levels even if the fastball isn’t top-notch. It is certainly working out for Scolaro, with a K-rate just below 35%. The Sox need more pitching in their ranks, especially higher in the system, look for Scolaro to be the type of guy that hangs around for a while. I won’t say he will never make it to MLB, not after Tanner Banks surprisingly did.


ACL White Sox

Drake Logan: .150/.320/.250 — 1 BB, 10 K 2 R, 2 RBI (19th round pick, $125,000 bonus)
Ethan Hammerberg: 6 IP, 1.50, ERA, 1 BB, 9 K (20th round pick, $100,000 bonus)
Mark McLaughlin: 1 IP, 0.00 ERA, 0 BB, 1 K (7th round pick, $150,000 bonus)
Dylan Burns: 25 13 IP, 1.78 ERA, 6 BB, 24 K **Monthly MVP**


DSL White Sox

Godwin Bennett: .381/.491/.786 — 4 HR, 7 BB, 7 K, 15 R, 15 RBI, 3 SB **Monthly MVP**
Erick Hernández: .100/.182/.150 — 2 BB, 3 K, 2 R
Loidel Chapelli Jr.: .308/.386/.436 — 4 BB, 4 K, 9 R, 4 RBI
Ryan Burrowes: .231/.340/.282 — 4 BB, 9 K, 11 R, 4 RBI, 5 SB

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