2023 White Sox Affiliate Preview: Dominican Summer League (Rookie)

(White Sox)

The Chicago White Sox’s affiliate in the Dominican Summer League began play on Monday, June 5th against the DSL Padres Brown. The rookie level club in the DSL is made up of mostly teenagers hailing from the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. The players in this league are extremely raw and undeveloped which isn’t surprising due to the majority of them being of high school age without the same level of experience or resources.

The Dominican Summer League was founded back in 1985 and is currently the only Latin America based rookie league entirely run by Major League Baseball. Teams in the DSL are owned and operated by Major League franchises. Each team plays a 72-game schedule that typically ends in late August prior to the playoffs. 48 teams will compete in the league with multiple organizations choosing to field two teams.

The White Sox’s affiliate plays at the club’s complex in Boca Chica and they play in the Boca Chica Baseball Baseball City Division of the Dominican Summer League. The 2023 club is comprised of 16 pitchers, five catchers, eight infielders and six outfielders. Out of 35 players on the roster, the majority are members of the most recent international class.

Statistics shouldn’t be heavily relied upon but meaningful indicators of future performance can often be found. Age, loud tools and positional value are all factors that can help players stand out in the league.

Anthony Nunez will be serving as the manager for the Dominican Summer League White Sox in 2023. Julio Bruno will be the hitting coach and Moises Nunez is the Assistant Hitting Coach. Guillermo Reyes is tasked with coaching the infielders. The pitching coach is Jose Brito, who served as the assistant pitching coach last year. Angel Gonzalez is an assistant coach on the staff and Fran Bautista will be the Performance Coach.

Pitchers

  • Jordany Chirinos (17, RHP)
  • Reudis Diaz (17, RHP)
  • Halan Dishmey (18, RHP)
  • Adrián Gil (19, RHP)
  • Ricardo Gomez (18, RHP)
  • Jeremy Gonzalez (18, LHP)
  • Óscar Hernandez (17, RHP)
  • Denny Lima (18, RHP)
  • José Malavé (17, RHP)
  • Alexander Mateo (17, RHP)
  • Pedro Redman (19, RHP)
  • Luis Reyes (17, RHP)
  • Luis Rodriguez (19, RHP)
  • Emilio Rosario (18, RHP)
  • Marcelo Villadares (18, RHP)
  • Fabián Ysalla (18, RHP)

Of the 16 members of this pitching staff, Marcelo Villadares and Adrián Gil are the only ones who have spent time in the Dominican Summer League previously. Despite a rough start to begin his career, Luis Reyes is the most notable name on the pitching staff in the Dominican Republic. The White Sox signed the 17-year-old righty for $700,000 and they were impressed with the amount of time he spent pitching stateside in amateur events with Perfect Game.

Reyes has grown in recent years and has sprouted up to 6-3 and 190 pounds. His fastball consistently hits 96 mph and while he must improve his control, he displays a low effort delivery with good extension and feel for secondary pitches. He shows a slider and a changeup and his primary secondary offerings. On a recent episode of the FutureSox podcast, Ben Badler of Baseball America joined the show and offered his insight on Reyes.

Badler recently wrote about the club’s international class and one of his sleepers was recently signed by the White Sox out of Venezuela. Fabián Ysalla signed out of Venezuela for just $50,000 after originally working out for clubs as a shortstop. The mound conversion has gone well so far. The right hander is a 6-1, 185 pounder who can run his fastball up to 95 mph. The veteran prospect writer surmised that Ysalla, “could throw upper 90’s with more experience and mechanical changes.” The 18-year-old displays a long arm action but repeats his delivery well.

Ysalla has also shown a “hard curveball with tight rotation, sharp bite and good depth.” The publication noted that the pitch could ultimately be featured as a plus secondary. Valladares is an 18-year-old righty who was listed as a sleeper last year. The lanky 6-4 hurler has shown good arm action. His fastball projects into the upper 90’s as well with downhill angle from a high three quarter slot. He’s another potential starter with a repeatable delivery.

The rest of the pitching staff is made up of recent signings outside of 19-year-old Venezuelan Adrián Gil. Gil was signed two years back after training with Freddy Garcia and he posted a 4.91 ERA in a tiny sample in 2021. There are six Dominicans and six Venezuelans comprising the rest of the staff in the Dominican Summer League.

Jordany Chirinos is a 6-3, 195 pound righty and the 17-year-old signed out of Venezuela back in January for $50,000. Ricardo Gomez is another Venezuelan who was signed back in May. The 6-3, 160 pounder is 18-years-old and he’ll debut in the DSL this summer. Óscar Hernandez is a 17-year-old right hander who stands at 6-4 and weighs 190 pounds. 17-year-old José Malavé signed for $50,000 in January and will likely pitch in relief. 19-year-old Luis Rodriguez hails from Venzeula as well along with Jeremy Gonzalez, who happens to be the only lefty on the entire staff.

Reudis Diaz is a 17-year-old Dominican who was a recent addition to the club’s latest international class. He is a 6-1, 180 pound right hander. Pedro Redman is a 6-2, 190 pound Dominican who was also signed in May. Dominican Halan Dishmey is a 6-6, 210 pound right hander who is slated to pitch out of the bullpen in the DSL. The staff rounds out with Dominican righties Denny Lima, Alexander Mateo and Emilio Rosario.

Outfield

  • Albert Alberto (17)
  • Marcelo Alcala (17)
  • Leandro Alsinois (18)
  • Cesar D’Oleo (18)
  • Abraham Ńuñez Jr. (17)
  • Fernando Vargas (20)

Abraham Nùñez Jr. earned the highest bonus number in the current international class for the White Sox at $700,000. The 17-year-old Dominican is an athletic center fielder with good bat speed. Marco Paddy and his staff were enamored with Nùñez’s success during amateur tournaments in the Dominican Republic. The 6-2, 175 pounder has shown bat control and strike zone judgment from the right side. He possesses gap power now but he must add strength to get to more.

17-year-old Dominican Albert Alberto is a 6-3, 190 pound outfielder who signed for $50,000 in January. He hits from the right side and projects in an outfield corner. Similarly, the club doled out $50,000 to Venezuelan outfielder Marcelo Alcala as well. The 17-year-old is 6-0 and 183 pounds. Fernando Vargas is a 6-2, 185 pound outfielder who the White Sox signed in 2021 after he was released from the Minnesota Twins. He struggled in 35 games last year.

Dominicans Leandro Alsinois and Cesar D’Oleo will return to the Dominican Summer League in 2023. Alsinois is a 5-10, 175 pounder who can play center field. The 18-year-old posted a .799 OPS in 32 games last summer. D’Oleo is a 6-0, 180 pounder who posted a .796 OPS in the same league last year over the course of 25 games.

Infield

  • Rafael Álvarez (18)
  • Ryan Castillo (18)
  • Adrián Gil (17)
  • Javier Mogollón (17)
  • Edwin Peralta (22)
  • D’Angelo Tejada (17)
  • Eyke Ugueta (17)
  • Juan Uribe Jr. (16)

The White Sox have made some interesting additions to their organization throughout the most recent international signing period. Many of these players were highlighted by Ben Badler of Baseball America in his most recent international review profiling the entire signing class of the White Sox for this period. Cuban infielder Rafael Álvarez and Dominican infielder D’Angelo Tejada received the biggest bonuses in the signing class.

Álvarez is a 6-2, 190 pound Cuban who signed for $350,000 in January. The 18-year-old had a history of playing in the outfield but the White Sox worked him out as a third baseman and they’ve been impressed with his defense in that spot. The right handed hitter slashed .366/.505/.662 playing with Granma in the U15 League in Cuba before signing. In addition to his defense, he’s been lauded for his right handed power and plus arm.

Tejada signed for $350,000 as well out of the Dominican Republic back in January. The 17-year-old is an athletic shortstop who possesses plus-plus speed with a really lean frame. The 6-0, 160 pounder has shown good footwork and a plus arm as well. At the plate, it’s mostly gap power to this point but he’ll need to add strength to his frame as he moves through the system. Adrián Gil is another 17-year-old who signed out of Venezuela as well. The 6-0, 193 pounder received $40,000.

Badler identified two recent additions from Venezuela as sleepers to watch as well. 17-year-old Javier Mogollòn is a 5-8, 160 pounder with an electric bat. His right handed swing is short, quick and balanced and he’s barreled live pitching during workouts consistently. He’s a plus runner and could end up as a power threat despite his small stature. He projects to second base and signed for $75,000. 17-year-old Eyke Ugueto is a 5-11, 175 pounder with a “good mix of bat control” and an “aggressive, hard nosed style of play.” He signed for $60,000 and he could stay at shortstop long-term due to his average arm and above average speed.

Juan Uribe Jr. is a 16-year-old infielder with a stocky, strong frame and he displays a short, quick right handed swing. The 5-10, 160 pounder is the son of former major league infielder Juan Uribe and he received $200,000 to sign with the White Sox. He projects as a second baseman and he’s shown an ability to barrel fastballs and recognize pitches. Ryan Castillo and Edwin Peralta are both Dominican corner infielders who will return to the DSL White Sox in 2023 as well.

Catcher

  • Stivan Flores (17)
  • Angelo Hernández (17)
  • Juan Oviedo (19)
  • Edwin Ramos (18)
  • Elías Riera (17)

Venezuelan backstop Angelo Hernández received $500,000 from the White Sox in January as one of their top signings in the period. The 17-year-old is known for his defensive polish with strong catch and throw skills. He’s an advanced receiver who moves well behind the plate and controls the running game. The 6-1, 200 pounder has shown an above average arm as well. He could project for 20 plus home run power at his peak and it’s definitely a power over hit profile offensively.

Stivan Flores is a 17-year-old catcher hailing from Venezuela also and the organization signed him for $250,000 in January. The 5-11, 180 pounder displays average arm strength with solid catch and throw skills but the bat is what got him signed. He’s a potential power hitting catcher with real offensive upside at the dish. Elías Riera is another 17-year-old Venezuelan catcher who the franchise signed during this current international period. The 6-2, 180 pounder received $35,000.

Edwin Ramos is a 6-2, 194 pound backstop from Venezuela who struggled in 27 games in the DSL last season. The 18-year-old is repeating the level this year. Juan Oviedo is listed as a members of the squad as well but he’s currently located on the 60-day injured list. The 19-year-old posted a .767 OPS last year for the DSL White Sox.

Overview

This team should be interesting to follow and it’s an extremely young group. The focus will be on 17-year-old righty Luis Reyes as he’s one of the highest upside pitching prospects in the entire organization. Despite signing as a member of the most recent international class, he’s similar to a high school draft pick due to his extensive history pitching in amateur tournaments in the United States. Fabian Ysalla and Marcelo Valladares offer an intriguing blend of talent as well.

While there aren’t many teenagers returning to the Dominican Summer League, the group that is headlining this current team provides plenty of upside at the plate. The White Sox have added a plethora of young bats with power and speed. Abraham Nunez Jr. and D’Angelo Jimenez should lead the group offensively but sleepers take form on an annual basis. There isn’t a big bonus headliner in this group but multiple players were given significant money and Marco Paddy’s track record is solid in recent years.

There are lots of unknowns in this group but the White Sox’s top 30 prospect lists are littered with similar players. Jose Rodriguez is playing shortstop every day for the Birmingham Barons and he signed for $50,000 out of the Dominican Republic. Lenyn Sosa is broke out for the Barons, has played in Chicago and is now back in Charlotte as well and he signed for just $325,000 out of Venezuela.

Bryan Ramos has returned for the Winston Salem Dash in High-A and he inked a deal for $300,000 out of Cuba. Ryan Burrowes is one of the best infield prospects in the system after starring in the DSL last season and signing for $75,000. One of the best pitchers in the system signed for $250,000 as Cristian Mena is performing for the Birmingham Barons in the Double-A Southern League.

Many of these players will matriculate stateside over the coming years and it all starts for them in the Dominican Summer League in most cases.

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