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White Sox Minor League Update: Aug. 20, 2017

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What to make of Blake Rutherford’s quiet first full season

Intimidators Stadium
Intimidators Stadium

Blake Rutherford has been on the disabled list this past week, but apparently it’s not significant enough to spark cryptic social media messages on his Twitter or Instagram accounts. Either that, or every prospect isn’t as candid as Luis Robert.

Through 20 games with the Intimidators, Rutherford is hitting .244/.311/.293, which works out to .272/.335/.368 when combined with his other 71 South Atlantic League games with the Yankees. It’s an underwhelming output for a top-50 prospect in his first full pro season, and James Fegan wrote a good piece for The Athletic parsing it.

Scouts have loved Rutherford because of good bat-to-ball skills from the left side and the potential to grow into a bigger power threat, but it’s easy to get anxious when Rutherford has just two homers over 394 plate appearances. Chris Getz frames it as though he’s going about building a hitting profile in the correct order.

Sox director of player development Chris Getz is perfectly fine seeing Rutherford's hit tool out in front of his power.

“Teaching contact is more challenging than flat-out trying to get a guy to hit for power. He’s got the ability to make contact, over time he’s going to learn how to drive the ball,” Getz said. “He can drive the ball right now. He’s got kind of natural quickness, barrel through the ball. As you get older, as you get more professional at-bats under your belt. He’s going to be in a position to where, ‘Ok, that ball I can do a little bit more with, do a little bit more with that ball.’”

Charlotte 5, Lehigh Valley 4

  • Jacob May went 0-for-2 with a walk and a strikeout, and 1-for-2 on the basepaths.
  • Jake Peter went 2-for-3 with a triple and an HBP, and was picked off/caught stealing.
  • Rymer Liriano walked twice and struck out twice.
  • D.J. Peterson and Casey Gillaspie both were 0-for-4 with a strikeout.
  • Danny Hayes went 3-for-4 with two homers.

Birmingham 6, Montgomery 3

  • Eloy Jimenez went 1-for-3 with a double and a walk.
  • Zack Collins was 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.
  • Nick Basto, 1-for-4 with a double and a strikeout.
  • Courtney Hawkins went 0-for-3 with a walk.
  • Danny Mendick, 0-for-2 with a strikeout.
  • Jordan Guerrero: 6 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 K

Potomac 2, Winston-Salem 1

  • Joel Booker went 0-for-4 with a strikeout.
  • Jameson Fisher went 1-for-2 with two walks.
  • Seby Zavala was 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Kannapolis 3, Hagerstown 2 (11 innings)

  • Alex Call went 2-for-5 with two doubles and a strikeout.
  • Luis Gonalez was 0-for-5 with three strikeouts.
  • Micker Adolfo, 0-for-5 with two strikeouts.
  • Gavin Sheets went 2-for-4 with a walk and a strikeout, and was picked off.
  • Craig Dedelow was 0-for-4 with a walk and two strikeouts.
  • Dylan Cease: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 1 HR, 1 WP

Great Falls 11, Helena 7

  • Justin Yurchak went 0-for-1 with four walks.
  • Franklin Reyes went 3-for-5 with a double and a strikeout.
  • Carlos Perez was 0-for-4.
  • Lincoln Henzman: 2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP

AZL White Sox 9, AZL Cubs 4

  • Ramon Beltre went 0-for-5 with two strikeouts.
  • Jose Colina was 3-for-4 with a double.
  • Sam Abbott was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.
  • Maiker Feliz tripled in his only trip to the plate.