White Sox Minor Keys: Aug. 23, 2022

Regions Field in Birmingham (Sox Machine photo)

One game in, Project Birmingham appears to be a massive success.

Not only did Bryan Ramos and Luis Mieses homer, and not only did they join the promoted Cannon Ballers Wilfred Veras, Wes Kath and DJ Gladney in debuting with multi-hit games, but the incumbents appeared invigorated as well. Oscar Colás reached base three times, Yoelqui Céspedes had a monster game, and Sean Burke dominated over five innings in Birmingham’s 11-7 victory over Mississippi.

Of course, the real implications of this shift will be learned over weeks, not innings, but the idea of a prospect supergroup remains fresh and fun one day in.

For the time being, the bigger implications are felt below. I was curious what the rosters would look like downstream, and it’s a mixed bag:

Winston-Salem: The Dash are thinned considerably, at least when it comes to name-brand talent. Without Ramos and Mieses, the remaining intriguing position players are mostly noteworthy for unusual backgrounds, like outfielder Ben Norman (24, Iowa product signed out of independent Great Falls) and catcher Colby Smelley (13th round JuCo pick in 2021, 22, hit .274/.390/.384 for Kannapolis). 2019 fourth-round pick Jams Beard also got the bump, but that’s because the Dash need bodies. He hit .163/.298/.242 with 118 strikeouts in 71 games for Kannapolis.

Cristian Mena and Norge Vera are still listed on the Dash’s roster, but they were reported to be joining the fray at Double-A at some point. Sorry, Julie.

Kannapolis: The recent batch of draft picks allows the Cannon Ballers to absorb the losses of guys like Kath, Gladney and Veras. Jordan Sprinkle and Brooks Baldwin should get everyday play up the middle, while Ole Miss hero Tim Elko should anchor first base. Jacob Burke, the Miami product picked in the 11th round, gives this roster an outfielder worth following.

Kohl Simas and Jared Kelley are also still listed on Kannapolis’ roster, but the Ballers should get plenty of help from the ACL White Sox with regards to recently drafted pitchers, and Manuel Veloz was recently added as well.

ACL White Sox: Since midseason additions from the DSL are unusual, these Sox are mostly stuck with the guys who were there before the draft. Maybe Cam Butler, Victor Quezada and Manuel Guariman can make the most out of the remaining games.

Charlotte 8, Memphis 2

  • Lenyn Sosa went 2-for-5 with two strikeouts.
  • Adam Haseley struck out thrice during an 0-for-5 night, and he was caught stealing.
  • Yolbert Sánchez went 3-for-4.

Birmingham 11, Mississippi 7

  • Oscar Colás went 2-for-4 with an HBP and a strikeout. He was also caught stealing.
  • Bryan Ramos drove in four by going 3-for-5 with a homer. He struck out once.
  • Luis Mieses also homered in his first Double-A game and struck out during a 2-for-4 night.
  • Colson Montgomery went 1-for-5.
  • Yoelqui Céspedes homered, doubled, singled twice, struck out, stole two bases scored two runs and drove in three.
  • Wifred Veras went 2-for-5.
  • So did Wes Kath, but with two strikeouts.
  • DJ Gladney was 2-for-4 with a K.
  • Adam Hackenberg was the only one who couldn’t get involved, going 0-for-4 with a GIDP.
  • Sean Burke: 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 9 K, 47 of 73 pitches for strikes.






Ashville 6, Winston-Salem 5

  • Colby Smelley went 2-for-4.
  • James Beard has to wear it: 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

Kannapolis 8, Carolina 3

  • Jordan Sprinkle went 3-for-5.
  • Brooks Baldwin, 2-for-5 with a strikeout in his A-ball debut.
  • Jacob Burke hit his first A-ball homer while going 1-for-4.

ACL White Sox 5, ACL Dodgers 4

  • Victor Quezada walked once and struck out thrice.
  • Manuel Guariman went 1-for-3 with a strikeout.
  • Cam Butler was 0-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout.
  • Yohemy Nolasco: 2 Ip, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K
  • Erick Bello and Emerson Talavera: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K

DSL White Sox 4, DSL D-backs Red 3

  • Guillermo Rodriguez went 1-or-3 with a walk, and was caught stealing.
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Watching that 1-9 Birmingham lineup right now seems infinitely more exciting then watching the Whitesox lineup.

Cool idea to throw just a bunch of prospects no matter where they are in their developmental stage onto one team and run them out there.


I think the idea is broader than that. Get all of the roving instructors and minor league coordinators to the Birmingham team. Have the “instructional camp” mindset to help players individually and in small groups. Similar to 2020 offsite camp, Fall Instructional league, and Spring Training.


Jams Beard would be an incredible prospect name. I think he should go with it.


The left-behinds in Winston and Kannapolis must be reconsidering their career plans….


Lol thats one way to look at it, but another is the amount of playing time available just exploded.


Also, depending on where they are in development, they could be heading to Fall Instructional League for a similar experience when season ends. They should make most of playing time, and work to move forward.


Thank goodness for the Sox Machine. It keeps me hopeful for the future and distracts me from the current.


If Colson Montgomery develops into a decent major league starter, it would be the first such White Sox draft and development of a high school position player since _____. First such White Sox draft and development of a high school player of any kind since ______.

I’m having a hard time filling in the blanks here. Mike Morse comes to mind, but he only had one >2 WAR season and a lot of teams had a hand in his development. Is there someone better or more recent?


Mike Cameron was a great player, but that draft was 30 years ago!


Ryan Sweeney (2003) had two >=2 WAR seasons.

Last edited 1 year ago by jorgefabregas

What about Harold?


Quite good. Draft 45 years ago.


Yeah, he’s having a great year. Maybe it will be his first 2 WAR season.


Demonstrates how a K-heavy bat can be made to work. Dodgers making the most of Gallo in the same way

Last edited 1 year ago by metasox

A .400 BABIP (Thompson) helps.


That is the point. When you are making contact, it has to be good contact

Last edited 1 year ago by metasox

The 2008 CHW draftees are entertaining and remarkably successful, tho with almost no credit to the Sox themselves. Beckham disappointed, Morel, Jordan Danks, and Leesman made the majors barely, but Daniel Hudson’s carved out a mostly successful career. The interesting bit is three high schoolers in the later rounds: James McCann, Marcus Semein, and CJ Cron, none of whom signed.

Last edited 1 year ago by a-t

I believe the last White Sox HS draftee (and signee) of any kind to make an All-Star game is Gio Gonzalez from ‘04. Last position player HS draftee/signee to make an ASG was Chris Young, now better known for mediocre announcing on the damn Apple TV broadcasts. Neither of which ever did so in the majors for the White Sox! The most recent HS draftee truly homegrown All-Star was Buehrle, and most recent HS position player homegrown All-Star was Joe Crede.

Last edited 1 year ago by a-t

Good calls. Crede is the position player where there’s no quibble about whether he was a solid major league starter or whether another org developed him. Young had a better career than Sweeney or Morse.


So Jose Rodriguez is now out for the year? See, Birmingham can’t handle all of the fun.

Right Size Wrong Shape

Do you have a link or source for that? I can’t find it anywhere.


Curt Bloom said it was a broken hamate. Just when he was really tapping into his power, so don’t be surprised if he has a slow start next year.

Right Size Wrong Shape

Oh man. What a disappointing turn of events.


Well, that’s the worst way to answer the question of who’s playing SS in BHam now