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Jerry Burke bounced back in 2023 with good health, and moved up to Birmingham to boot.
Tiffany Wintz/South Side Sox

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2024 South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 90: Jerry Burke

A solid season keeps this flexible righty on the radar

Jerry Burke

Right-Handed Relief Pitcher
195 pounds
Age: 25
2022 High Level Birmingham (Double-A)
Age relative to high level +0.7 years
SSS rank among all right-handed relief pitchers in the system 14
Overall 2023 stats 3-1 ⚾️ 28 games (9 finished) ⚾️ 1 save ⚾️ 49 1⁄3 innings ⚾️ 3.83 ERA ⚾️ 1.297 WHIP ⚾️ 48 K ⚾️ 24 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. It was not a surprise that in 2023, Burke moved to the bullpen. But what might have been was that the righty revived his career somewhat, throwing stellar ball in Winston-Salem (2.63 ERA over 11 games) and holding his own with his first taste of Double-A (4.97 ERA).

Burke’s Baseball Cube player ratings
Walks 63 (-20 from last season)
K/BB 56 (-18)
Durability 54 (-13)
Hittable 48 (-7)
vs. Power 48 (-7)
Strikeouts 26 (-4)
Team Winning Percentage .390

There are two main concerns going forward for Burke. One is that he is running out of time to make a real mark in the organization; he isn’t likely due for a promotion to Triple-A and thus will be pitching at an age somewhat significantly older than Double-A level. And despite a solid season pitching at High-A and Double-A, Burke’s ratings (how he compares to his peers) took a massive hit, making him appear to be a completely average minor league pitcher.

2024 South Side Sox Top 100 White Sox Prospects

90. Jerry Burke, RHRP
91. Frankeli Arias, LHSP
92. Mikey Kane, 3B
93. Carlton Perkins, RHSP
94. Tyler Neslony, LF
95. Drew Dalquist, RHSP
96. Jason Matthews, SS
97. Jonathan Stiever, RHSP
98. Tommy Sommer, LHSP
99. Daniel González, LHRP
100. Elier Gil, C

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