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White Sox Minor League Player of the Week (April 17-23): Wilfred Veras

Wilfred Veras hit three homers in one week and is learning a new position this year, which makes him an easy call for our MVP

Wilfred Veras (left) went from congratulating Loidel Chapelli Jr. (center) for a great first week to having a great second week himself!
| Winston-Salem Dash

Around the System
In Charlotte, the Sox placed newly signed Stephen Piscotty on the Triple-A roster. They released Ricardo Sánchez and brought Garrett Davila back up to replace him. Andrew Pérez was activated as well to bring in a couple new lefties to the roster.

For the Barons, just a couple of promotions last week: Jerry Burke and Ben Norman both were promoted from the Dash.

Back in North Carolina for the High-A Winston-Salem Dash, Chris Lanzilli was promoted to the team from Kannapolis. Norge Vera was placed on the 7-day IL as well.

Finally, Brooks Baldwin was activated and played this week in Kannapolis. Victor Torres was placed on the Development List.

White Sox Minor League Player of the Week

Wilfred Veras: .407/.448/.852, 3 HR, 5 R, 9 RBI, 2 BB, 7 K, 2 SB

Apologies for the outdated videos, Winston-Salem did not play a team that had a video feed last week, and that is a bummer, because Wilfred Veras was awesome at the plate. He hit three homers in a week and has shown, at least for now, improvement in plate discipline. His walks are down 1%, but the K-rate is down about 3%, so it’s a net positive on that front. He is also learning a new position. He was a corner infielder last season, and has spent most of his 2023 games, sans one, in right field. Both assists came two weeks ago, but he is looking relatively OK out in right. I am not sure that is where he will end up, but the bat looks good regardless. He was one of the few who did well in Project Birmingham, so maybe a promotion there isn’t that far away — even at 20 years old.

Charlotte Knights

A.J. Alexy: 2 2⁄3 IP, 20.25 ERA, 3 BB, 4 K
Nate Fisher: 11 IP, 0.82 ERA, 4 BB, 9 K
Jonathan Stiever: (IL)
Davis Martin: (did not pitch)
Sean Burke: 1 2⁄3 IP, 27.00 ERA, 4 BB, 2 K
Franklin German: 2 2⁄3 IP, 16.87 ERA, 2 BB, 5 K
Nicholas Padilla: 1 2⁄3 IP, 5.40 ERA, 5 BB, 5 K
Lane Ramsey: 1 2⁄3 IP, 5.40 ERA, 1 BB, 4 K
Carlos Pérez: .154/.313/.154, 2 R, 3 BB, 2 K

Nate Fisher has been a big part of the improved Charlotte pitching staff so far this season. Last week, Fisher’s ERA was less than 1.00, and on the year he has a 2.78 ERA in 22 2⁄3 innings. He is striking out more batters compared to his Triple-A stint in the New York Mets system last year, but the walks are up. Sean Burke did not do particularly well in his first start of the season and A.J. Alexy has not shown well, at all. There will be more than six starters used in an MLB year, and Davis Martin is the presumed sixth option. Is Fisher putting himself into that conversation as Burke tries to improve?

Birmingham Barons

Matt Thompson: 5 IP, 1.80 ERA, 5 BB, 6 K
Cristian Mena: 6 IP, 3.00 ERA, 0 BB, 6 K
Adam Hackenberg: .133/.235/.333, 1 HR, 3 R, 3 RBI, 1 BB, 5 K
Bryan Ramos: IL
José Rodríguez: .200/.261/.200, 2 R, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 6 K
Yoelqui Céspedes: .167/.318/.167, 3 R, 1 RBI, 4 BB, 10 K, 1 SB
Luis Mieses: .263/.286/.368, 3 R, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 8 K

The top hitting prospects in Birmingham did not do very well last week. The pitching, led by Matt Thompson and Cristina Mena, were much better. Thompson’s start really was helped by good fielding, as he survived five walks, but he has put together two good results and one bad so far. Mena, on the other hand, was not going long in games and allowed too many runs, but he struck out quite a few batters. This week, he got a quality start and did not walk anybody. As mentioned above with Nate Fisher, that seventh guy in the depth chart has to come from somewhere, and it can come from Double-A, as happened last year with Davis Martin.

Winston-Salem Dash

Jonathan Cannon: 5 IP, 3.60 ERA, 2 BB, 3 K
Drew Dalquist: 2 IP, 9.00 ERA, 0 BB, 3 K
Jared Kelley: IL
Kohl Simas: 4 IP, 6.75 ERA, 1 BB, 5 K
Norge Vera: 2⁄3 IP, 13.50 ERA, 0 BB, 2 K (placed on IL)
Loidel Chapelli Jr. .263/.440/.368, 4 R, 4 RBI, 6 BB, 7 K, 2 SB
Wes Kath: .333/.333/.500, 6 R, 4 RBI, 0 BB, 8 K
Colson Montgomery: IL
Wilfred Veras: SSS White Sox Minor League Player of the Week
Terrell Tatum: .273/.407/.545, 1 HR, 7 R, 7 RBI, 5 BB, 8 K, 3 SB

Kannapolis Cannon Ballers

Tanner McDougal: 4 IP, 0.00 ERA, 0 BB, 6 K
Peyton Pallette: 3 IP, 0.00 ERA, 1 BB, 2 K
Tyler Schweitzer: 5 IP, 3.60 ERA, 1 BB, 4 K
Jordan Sprinkle: .176/.333/.294, 4 R, 1 RBI, 3 BB, 4 K
Tim Elko: .400/.444/.800 - 3 HR, 4 R, 9 RBI, 2 BB, 8 K

It was a close call between Wilfred Veras and Tim Elko for MiLB White Sox Player of the Week; both mashed, but Veras mashed just a bit more. Elko was known for two things in college: homers and strikeouts. That has not changed since he joined the Sox organization. He has four homers overall in 2023, for a .259 ISO. The strikeouts are down compared to his 24 games last year after the draft, but a near 32% K-rate remains really bad in Low-A. Maybe Elko can continue to bring those strikeouts down, but it will be difficult given this was a problem in college as well. He could move to High-A soon given he is 24, and any improvement in plate discipline there would be a good thing.

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