Escobar rewarded for job well done

The White Sox placed three prospects on the 40-man roster, including one of the stars of the Arizona Fall League.

Eduardo Escobar received a bonus for his fine performance in Arizona Fall League on Friday: a spot on the 40-man roster.
Along with Escobar, reliever Anthony Carter (who also had a nice AFL season) and Nathan Jones earned protection from the Rule 5 draft. The 40-man roster now has six open spots remaining.
*Escobar the only no-brainer of the group, leading a thin group of middle infielders with the system’s best defense. He also showed a surprising amount of pop in the AFL, hitting .300/.353/.536, although he ended the season with just four hits in his last 33 at-bats.
*Carter built upon his decent season at Birmingham with startling success as a Saguaro. Most notably, he struck out 16 hitters without a single walk over 10 innings. Three of the four runs he allowed came in one rough outing. There are reasons to suppress enthusiasm — he just reached Double-A as a 24-year-old, he mostly pumps fastballs, and he’s an extreme flyball pitcher — but he did everything he could in Hitting Heaven.
*Jones is an interesting case, as he was said to have great reliever stuff (fastball-slider), but made the jump to starting in 2010 with mediocre results. His strikeout rate dropped (7.84/9IP  in 2009 to 6.43), walk rate increased (2.91 to 3.30), and he became far more hittable (.244 BAA to .296).
On the plus side, he threw 152 1/3 innings, which was more than double his career high (68 in 2009), and allowed just 10 homers. I’m guessing he’ll end up in relief, but I doubt it hurt anything to give starting a shot. If nothing else, he gained a ton of experience.
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Wrapping up the seasons for the two other notable AFLers:
*Jared Mitchell singled in his final at-bat of the fall season, so he avoided finishing the season with an 0-for-13 slump. He hit just .163/.239/.200 over 80 at-bats, but that was to be expected. He hadn’t played any competitive baseball since the second week of spring training, and was facing a level of competition brand new to him. He just needed to stay healthy, so mission accomplished.
*Charles Leesman didn’t have much fun in Arizona, posting the kind of line that makes Carter’s performance all the more impressive. He allowed 23 hits and nine walks over 10 2/3 innings (a 3.10 WHIP!), good for an 11.81 ERA. He did strike out 12.
As always, it’s worth noting that AFL performances aren’t terribly predictive. Brent Morel won last year’s batting title and followed up with a terrific minor-league season in 2010, but Jordan Danks hit .343/.458/.505 and didn’t come close to matching that in Charlotte. Let’s not even talk about C.J. Retherford.
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Arizona Fall League (final game):

  • Thursday: Peoria 3, Mesa 1
    • Jared Mitchell went 1-for-3.
    • Eduardo Escobar went 0-for-2 with a walk.
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Jim Margalus
Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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Buehrlesque

Poor CJ. I remember when he was talked about as a legit contender for the big club last year. Man, what the heck happened?

knoxfire30

Can we add to the mitchell summary something like, “and he showed he re-gained his + + speed???”
Or did he not show + + speed?
I have heard conflicting accounts of how well he was moving and I have seen no actual footage to judge for myself, anyone have some first hand insight.

splitfingeredpujols

I might be going crazy, but I seem to recall hearing Mitchell himself say this exact same thing in a recent interview.

baseballjones

Are the Danks brothers a package deal, in that John is waiting to see if Jordan will make the big club before committing to a long-term deal? This could be the year he gets the nod…

knoxfire30

If jordan danks gets the nod this year the whitesox are a 100 loss team. As a 24 year old in an extremely hitter friendly AAA stadium he managed to be a below average regular by just about all accounts. His defense is the only thing close to MLB ready, his bat makes it possible that he will never account for anything more then a 4th or 5th outfielder.

baseballjones

So, if by “getting the nod”, I meant as a 4th or 5th outfielder (aka bench player), does that also doom us to be a 100 loss team?

baseballjones

I wrote on another blog recently that Jordan Danks today seem like he is the LH version of Brian Anderson. And that they had no problem keeping BA around waiting for him to prove himself with the bat, since the glove (and the 5-tool potential)was always there.
Not that I wish for a front row seat to another painful BA-esque trainwreck, but if it keeps his brother in our fold for another 3 years (the length of time for contracts he keeps avoiding), then why not. I mean, we could do far worse to keep the bench warm with a pricier name, or one not nearly as skilled with the glove, couldn’t we? It doesn’t get any cheaper than minimum wage, and the savings over a guy like Andruw Jones (for example) would likely net you $1MM that might come in handy now or later.

knoxfire30

John Danks has much more character then to determine his signing an extention based on if the sox take pity in his hole in the bat brother and make him a 5th outfielder.
Im on record as saying the sox are going to resign danks atleast once no matter what, i stand by that and hope that jordan danks inability to make the big league squad isnt a factor
jordan was a good gamble on a highly athletic, toolsy player with good potential in the 7th round (althoguh he got 2nd round money) but the gamble didnt pay off, I personally think he is a lost cause at this point. I however applaud the sox for taking a shot like this and going over slot, two things they typically dont do.

splitfingeredpujols

To his credit, Brian Anderson was actually a decent hitter in the minors. If Danks2 wasn’t related to Danks1 I doubt anybody would even think twice about him anymore.

baseballjones

Wow, I had no idea that Jordan Danks had already failed, because that is how I read the tone of your last post…but, Tyler Flowers on the other hand, his “future is so bright I gotta wear shades…” and was merely the victim of a down year last season? Curious.

dudeman

There really is no comparison there. I doubt there is anyone in the industry that would trade Flowers for Jordan Danks, hypothetically.
I’m not suggesting that Flowers has tons of value, but Danks barely registers as a real prospect at this point.

baseballjones

Yeah, that was just sarcasm rearing its ugly head again. There is no direct comparison between the players, but there is a comparison to how these 2 prospects are viewed by the fans. You can say each have “holes in their bats” based on their inability to demonstrate enough hitting to earn the MLB nod, but while one (Flowers) seems to be viewed so favorably by many on this site, I found it odd that the other (Danks) was potentially viewed as nearing the end of his chances to make it.

knoxfire30

I’m gonna hope the danks vs flowers comparison was sarcasm, I have no bias toward either player, one however has proven a hell of a lot more then the other and thats brutally obvious when going over the numbers.

baseballjones

Agree that Flowers has better minor league numbers (and more of them to form an opinion on potential for success at the MLB level) but, in the end it is still quite possible that Jordan Danks gets a chance without having “earned it” yet.

fustercluck

Next time the dog eats your homework, just stay home. Save us all the embarrassment.
Oh, and more free content, please.

splitfingeredpujols

When I first read about comparisons between Escobar’s defense and Vizquel’s, the first thing I did was check their MiLB offensive stats.
Now, the notion that Escobar’s D compares to Vizquel is something I can’t verify (having never seen him personally), but I doubt it’s quite that good. Not a knock at EE, but Omar is among the all-time best defenders.
Still, they are comparable. Beyond being Venezuelan, they’re switch hitters of a modest build. Omar is a bit shorter, EE a bit skinnier. They both had good speed in the minors, and they both failed to translate that speed into steals.
What gives me hope is that Omar’s bat continued to improve into his late 20’s, and into his early 30’s. His baserunning followed suite, while his defense remained elite. If EE can follow the same path…well that’s just a nice thought.
EE is already a better hitter than Omar was at the same point in their respective careers. Assuming an Omar-like path of progression is obviously unfair, but it’s always nice to dream.