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2024 South Side Sox Prospect Vote: Round 7

Cristian Mena wins the sixth vote. Who is the seventh-best prospect in the White Sox system?

It took an extended vote and the most-stuffed ballot box yet, but Cristian Mena prevailed at No. 6 in the vote.
| Salina Rae Silver/South Side Sox

It is the seventh year of Top Prospect voting at South Side Sox!

Here’s how 2018 wrangled out — all 42 picks. Also, here’s an archive of every article in the 2018 series. Here’s how 2019 came together, all 50 picks, and the archive as well. Here’s 2020, with the archive. Here’s the 2021 wrap-up of just 35 picks due to flagging participation, along with the full archive. And here’s the 2022 link to the 27-pick wrap, along with the full archive. And Round 24 of voting was 2023’s last (we didn’t do an actual wrap for last year’s voting, but Jordan Sprinkle ended up being our final pick!), with the full archive.

Our Top 100 is now underway, with Jason Matthews as our Mr. 100. We’ll try for a daily Top 100 entry on site, and the Prospect Vote will turn over as soon as the top vote-getter seems to have an insurmountable lead — but we’ll take no longer than a week to vote each round.

We have six of 10 players from last year’s initial prospect vote poll on our first ballot this year, with two players matriculating out of rookie status (Oscar Colás and Lenyn Sosa) and two pitchers falling out of Top 10 consideration (Norge Vera and Sean Burke). And though “we’re not rebuilding,” four of the Top 10 on the ballot to begin were acquired were not even in the system in 2023; put another way, not a single player from our farm system has moved up onto the first ballot in 2024. Oof.

Last year, Sosa was spending his sixth year among our Top 100 Prospects, and this year we have three players in their fifth years on the list: Bryan Ramos, Cristian Mena and José Rodríguez.

All right, let’s have some fun. And get voting!


It took longer than a week of voting, and thus the biggest turnout yet, but Cristian Mena broke away from a deadlock with Jake Eder to prevail this round, totaling 43 of 254 (16.9%) votes. In the end, after all was cast, the top four players all moved up one spot, but the fight for No. 7 looks to be fierce — five votes separated No. 2-6 on the ballot.

A year ago, Mena was voted our No. 8 prospect.

2024 South Side Sox Top-Voted RHSPs

The No. 6-voted prospect last year was Noah Schultz, in 2022 and 2021 it was Yoelqui Céspedes, and the No. 6 vote in 2020 went to Zack Collins.

Peyton Pallette finally broke out of the basement in polling, moving up to No. 9 as ballot rookie Terrell Tatum came in at No. 10, with 10 votes. The outfielder parade continues this round, as 2023 draftee and bonus baby George Wolkow joins the ballot.


South Side Sox Top-Voted White Sox Prospects for 2024

  1. Colson Montgomery — 65% (Rodríguez 16%, Schultz 13%, Nastrini/Quero/Ramos 1.6%, Eder/Mena 0.8%, González/Pallette 0%)
  2. Noah Schultz — 64% (Quero 11%, Ramos 10%, Nastrini 5%, Rodríguez 4%, Mena 2.4%, Bush 1.6%, Eder/González/Pallette 0.8%)
  3. Bryan Ramos — 29% (Quero 25%, Nastrini 13%, Eder 8%, Rodríguez 6%, González 5%, Bush 4.3%, Mena 3.7%, Cannon 3.2%, Pallette 2.7%)
  4. Edgar Quero — 36% (Nastrini 18%, Eder/Rodríguez 8%, Mena 7%, Leasure 6%, González 5.1%, Bush 4.6%, Cannon 4%, Pallette 3%)
  5. Nick Nastrini — 27% (Mena 13%, Eder 11.2%, Leasure 10.6%, Rodríguez 10.1%, J. Burke 9.5%, González 8.9%, Bush 4%, Cannon 3.4%, Pallette 2.8%)
  6. Cristian Mena — 17% (Eder 14%, Leasure 13.0%, González/Rodríguez 12.6%, J. Burke 11.8%, Cannon 6%, Bush 5%, Pallette 4.3%, Tatum 3.9%)

Jacob Burke

Center Fielder
Age 23
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking N/R
2023 High Level Winston-Salem (High-A)
Age relative to high level -0.2 years
Overall 2023 minor league stats 85 games ▪️ 6 HR ▪️ 40 RBI ▪️ .294/.392/.439 ▪️ 36 BB ▪️ 85 K ▪️ 19-of-26 (73.1%) SB

Burke started the year hurt, but once he started playing (at Kannapolis, then quickly in Winston-Salem) he never stopped getting on base. The underrated outfielder made Colson Montgomery’s 50-game on-base streak in 2022 look like nothing, reaching base in 52 straight games to start the season. That .392 OBP seems to be EXACTLY what the Getz regime is valuing in its prospects, and to little surprise Burke was rewarded with a placement in the Arizona Fall League, where he dipped to a .750 OPS against equal-age but tougher overall competition.


Ky Bush

Left-Handed Starting Pitcher
Age 24
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking N/R, acquired from the Angels in July
2023 High Level Birmingham (AA)
Age relative to high level -1.3 years
Overall 2023 stats 4-8 ▪️ 17 starts ▪️ 71 2⁄3 IP ▪️ 6.91 ERA ▪️ 78 K▪️ 37 BB ▪️ 1.647 WHIP

Bush’s broad stats profile resembles closely fellow lefty starter Jake Eder below, but without the return from major injury for context. He’s a second-rounder who, over two full professional seasons-plus, has yet to flash much of his potential.


Jonathan Cannon

Right-handed Starting Pitcher
Age 23
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 19
2023 High Level Birmingham (AA)
Age relative to high level -2.3 years
Overall 2023 stats 1-4 ▪️ 25 starts ▪️ 121 IP ▪️ 4.46 ERA ▪️ 106 K ▪️ 39 BB ▪️ 1.364 WHIP

Cannon ate up High-A in 2023 but hit some speed bumps in Birmingham. He likely starts with the Barons and moves up to Charlotte by midseason, ranking as one of the Top 5 starters in the system.


Jake Eder

Left-Handed Starting Pitcher
Age 25
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking N/R, acquired from Miami in July for Jake Burger
2023 High Level Birmingham (AA)
Age relative to high level -0.3 years
Overall 2023 stats 2-6 ▪️ 14 starts ▪️ 56 2⁄3 IP ▪️ 6.35 ERA ▪️ 36 BB ▪️ 70 K ▪️ 1.676 WHIP

Like Peyton Pallette below, Eder just got his first season post-surgery under his belt in 2023, with shaky results. His assignment (like Colson Montgomery and Bryan Ramos) to the Arizona Fall League due to a late (injury) season start has yielded similarly mixed results. He may need a little more Barons seasoning in 2024, but the AFL assignment indicates even if so, he’ll be in Charlotte shortly.


Jacob González

Shortstop
Age 21
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking N/R, 2023 First Round draft choice
2023 High Level Kannapolis (Low-A)
Age relative to high level +0.1 years
Overall 2023 MiLB stats 34 games ▪️ 1 HR ▪️ 17 RBI ▪️ .211/.333/.260 ▪️ 23 BB ▪️ 25 K

Chicago’s first-rounder in 2023 was dunked right into pro action, getting more than a month’s worth of play in after signing. The results were less than ideal, with zero power stroke. However, did not let his hitting issues sway his selectivity, as his near 1.00 BB/K reflects the batting-eye trend of the overall draft class.


Jordan Leasure

Right-Handed Relief Pitcher
Age 25
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking N/R, acquired in July from L.A.
2023 High Level Charlotte (AAA)
Age relative to high level -2.9 years
Overall 2023 stats 2-4 ▪️ 11 saves ▪️44 games (22 finished) ▪️ 48 1⁄3 IP ▪️ 3.91 ERA ▪️ 24 BB ▪️ 79 K ▪️ 1.262 WHIP

After acquiring him from the Dodgers, the White Sox advanced Leasure to Triple-A for the first time in his career, and he held his own; and in the AFL, Leasure starred against some of the best prospects in the game (1.08 ERA, 0.480 WHIP). He is poised to possibly break north with the White Sox next March, or be the first arm up early in 2024.


Peyton Pallette

Right-handed starting pitcher
Age 22
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 11
2023 High Level Kannapolis (Low-A)
Age relative to high level +0.4 years
Overall 2023 stats 0-4 ▪️ 22 starts ▪️ 72 IP ▪️ 4.13 ERA ▪️ 78 K ▪️ 41 BB ▪️ 1.361 WHIP

The 2023 season was Pallette’s first after missing all of 2022 with injury, and the early returns were promising. He’ll start at Winston-Salem this year, with an expectation of Birmingham in the second half.


José Rodríguez

Shortstop
Age 22
2020 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 32
2021 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 21
2022 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 3
2023 SSS Prospect Vote ranking 5
2023 High Level White Sox (MLB)
Age relative to high level -5.9 years
Overall 2023 MiLB stats 106 games ▪️ 21 HR ▪️ 62 RBI ▪️ .262/.292/.437 ▪️ 31-of-40 (77.5%) SB ▪️ 20 BB ▪️ 108 K

More home run power, but not a big jump in slugging percentage overall (seven points) given the sell-out for power (more than a K per game). Can’t say Popeye’s career is at a crossroads, but he’ll likely need Tim Anderson gone from Chicago to see significant time in the majors in 2024.


Terrell Tatum

Center Fielder
Age 24
2023 High Level Birmingham (MLB)
Age relative to high level -0.6 years
Overall 2023 stats 125 games ▪️ 6 HR ▪️ 24 RBI ▪️ .248/.397/.367 ▪️ 47-of-56 (83.9%) SB ▪️ 100 BB ▪️ 149 K

Yes, it’s possible to be a three true outcomes hitter with one of the outcomes not being a home run; in Tatum’s case, perhaps it’s a stolen base. There is almost zero gap power in Tatum’s game for someone with so much swing-and-miss, but those 100 walks/.397 OBP sure are tantalizing.


George Wolkow

Right Fielder
Age 18
2023 High Level Arizona (Rookie)
Age relative to high level -2.8 years
Overall 2023 pro stats 13 games ▪️ 1 HR ▪️ 3 RBI ▪️ .225/.392/.325 ▪️ 2-of-2 (100%) SB ▪️ 9 BB ▪️ 17 K

In this past 2023 draft, the White Sox took a flier on this high-round (second, third?) prep talent (and lifetime Sox fan!) and it paid off, dangling $1 million to ink him. It’s not a stretch to list Wolkow among the steals of the draft — and as the top talent picked by the White Sox.


Poll

Who is the seventh-best prospect in the White Sox system?

This poll is closed

  • 11%
    Jacob Burke
    (23 votes)
  • 5%
    Ky Bush
    (11 votes)
  • 6%
    Jonathan Cannon
    (13 votes)
  • 19%
    Jake Eder
    (38 votes)
  • 13%
    Jacob González
    (25 votes)
  • 13%
    Jordan Leasure
    (26 votes)
  • 5%
    Peyton Pallette
    (10 votes)
  • 12%
    José Rodríguez
    (24 votes)
  • 4%
    Terrell Tatum
    (9 votes)
  • 6%
    George Wolkow
    (13 votes)
192 votes total Vote Now

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