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South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 84: Jerry Burke

Another year, and a familiar refrain: Stay healthy

Jerry Burke battled injury throughout the 2022 season.
Tiffany Wintz/South Side Sox

Jerry Burke

Right-Handed Starting Pitcher
195 pounds
Age: 24
2022 High Level Kannapolis (Low-A)
Age relative to high level +2.3 years
SSS rank among all right-handed starting pitchers in the system 18
Overall 2022 stats 0-2 ⚾️ 6 starts ⚾️ 15 1⁄3 innings ⚾️ 4.11 ERA ⚾️ 0.913 WHIP ⚾️ 13 K ⚾️ 3 BB

As a freshman at Georgetown, Jerry Burke struggled mightily out of the bullpen, with a 10.12 ERA and 2.53 WHIP. However, he elevated his game as a swingman during his sophomore campaign and enjoyed a solid junior season for the Hoyas in 2019, with a 4.66 ERA and 1.27 WHIP as he relinquished 83 hits and 25 walks while fanning 86 during his 85 innings. This earned him the notice of the White Sox, who selected him in the 17th round of the 2019 MLB draft. A $125,000 signing bonus helped get the youngster in the fold.

Burke’s pro debut numbers were decent overall in 2019, but unexceptional. In his 12 games for the AZL Sox (eight starts), he posted a 4.33 ERA and 1.50 WHIP by ceding 63 hits and 18 walks while striking out 42. The numbers can be taken with a grain of salt, however, as Burke’s 139 combined collegiate and professional innings nearly tripled the combined totals of his freshman and sophomore years. With that said, Burke’s best monthly numbers came in August, when he posted a 2.25 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 18 strikeouts during his 20 innings.

After the pandemic shutdown terminated his 2020 season before it started, Burke began 2021 with a two-week stint in Kannapolis before earning a promotion to Winston-Salem. He was placed on the injured list twice, with the latter stint coming on August 28 and ultimately ending his year. In 13 combined outings (nine starts) totaling 44 2⁄3 innings, he posted a solid 3.43 ERA and 1.19 WHIP by surrendering 40 hits (.237 OBA) and 13 walks (2.6 BB/9) while striking out 43 (8.7 K/9).

The 2022 season was more of the same, again at the A-level. Burke started the year injured, and was activated in late June, seeing just six starts for the summer. The numbers were pretty nice, but the durability is worrisome.

Burke’s Baseball Cube player ratings
Walks 83
K/BB 74
Durability 67 (? this one doesn’t make sense)
Hittable 55
vs. Power 55
Strikeouts 30
Team Winning Percentage .390

With just 31 games pitched over four seasons (three excluding the pandemic cancellation), Burke needs to pitch for a full season in the system before ascending to any sort of real prospect status. If you read Burke’s profile a year ago, when he cracked out Top 100 at No. 85, you’ll recognize the familiar refrain. As it is, time is ticking on a pitcher who will turn 25 in May. Expect him to start at Winston-Salem.

2023 South Side Sox Top 104 White Sox Prospects

84. Jerry Burke, RHSP
85. Carlos Jiménez, 1B
86. Mason Adams, RHSP
87. Frankeli Arias, LHSP
88. Ernesto Jaquez, RHSP
89. Laz Rivera, 3B
90. Xavier Fernández, C
91. Álvaro Agüero, CF
92. Ben Norman, RF
93. Erick Bello, RHRP
94. Adisyn Coffey, RHRP
95. Arnold Prado, RF
96. Alsander Womack, 2B
97. Johan Domínguez, RHSP
98. Evan Skoug, C
99. Noah Owen, RHSP
100. Javier Mora, 2B
101. Will Kincanon, RHRP
102. Yohemy Nolasco, RHSP
103. Billy Seidl, RHRP
104. José Rodulfo, RHRP