White Sox Minor Keys: April 19, 2022

The Charlotte Knights opened up a six-game series in Nashville against the Sounds, so I made the 15-minute drive to see them in action. I’ll be in and out of First Horizon Park throughout the week, depending on lineups and whether the White Sox ever play again.

A couple of Knights notes on the pitching front:

No. 1: Tuesday afternoon, Mike Rodriguez of Univision Sports tweeted that Johnny Cueto pitched a couple of innings in extended spring training on Monday before heading off to join the Charlotte Knights.

Tuesday night, Cueto was in Charlotte’s dugout.

(Sox Machine photo)

If his schedule holds, he’ll pitch Saturday night. Assuming he pitches at some point during this Nashville trip, I’ll be there regardless.

No. 2: The last time I saw Tyler Johnson pitch in person, it was an inning for the Kannapolis Intimidators during a trip to Asheville, N.C. He struck out two over a scoreless frame in one of many dominant outings in Low-A, and after finishing the season dominating High-A, it seemed like we’d see him in Chicago the following year.

Well, it’s 2022, and thanks to multiple injuries and a knee surgery, Johnson’s career is still trying to get over the hump in Charlotte. He entered tonight’s game with a 13.21 ERA with 21 walks over 15⅔ innings scattered over the last two seasons, interrupted by the aforementioned procedure.

Tonight marked his best-ever outing with the Knights — two scoreless innings, allowing just a walk while striking out two. He sat 95-96 with his fastball, so it seems like the arm strength is all the way back. He also had some sizable misses at times, so the control remains suspect, but he’s tied together three consecutive scoreless outings, in the event you’re looking for any kind of positive story from the Charlotte bullpen.

Nashville 7, Charlotte 0

  • Romy Gonzalez went 0-for-2 and was lifted after Charlotte fell behind by the final score. He ended the previous inning by completing a 6-3, and nothing appeared to be wrong then.
  • Carlos Pérez went 1-for-3 with a walk.
  • Micker Adolfo was 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.
  • Tyler Johnson: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K

Birmingham 2, Biloxi 1

  • Yolbert Sánchez went 1-for-4.
  • Lenyn Sosa, 0-for-4.
  • Yoelqui Céspedes homered for the third time, his only hit in four trips.
  • Jose Rodriguez went 1-for-3 with a walk.
  • Davis Martin: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 5 BB, 7 K

Notes:

*Céspedes’ homer was quite a poke to the opposite gap.

Greenville 5, Winston-Salem 4

  • Oscar Colás went 1-for-4 with a walk and two strikeouts.
  • Bryan Ramos was 2-for-4 with a K.
  • Luis Mieses made his 1-for-4 count, as the hit was a grand slam. He also struck out once.
  • Adam Hackenberg was 0-for-3 with a walk and two strikeouts.
  • Harvin Mendoza, 0-for-4 with a K.

Highlights:

*Here’s the Mieses slam:

Kannapolis 14, Fredericksburg 2

  • James Beard went 1-for-3 with three walks and two stolen bases.
  • Colson Montgomery drove in five by going 1-for-3 with a double, two walks and a sac fly.
  • Wilfred Veras went 1-for-3 with a walk, strikeout and two HBPs.
  • DJ Gladney was 2-for-6 with two doubles and two strikeouts.
  • Wes Kath struck out three times during his 2-for-6 night.

Highlights:

*Baseball Prospectus’ Ben Spanier was at the game and shared footage of Montgomery and Kath:

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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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Willardmarshall

19 ABs, 9 strikeouts…. Putting Micker through waivers may not
have been so risky….

knoxfire30

Has Romy been announced as the player coming up for the DH?

Still very very early but will be interesting to see if the sox move players in the system aggressively or if they are a little more patient then usual since they have more lower level system guys having early success like montgomery, colas, ramos… etc I think Colas should aggressively climb the system but I like the idea of some of the others getting a slower progression and really building themselves up.

HallofFrank

They announced Haseley last night.

knoxfire30

hmm kinda weird he got pulled then

jhomeslice

Did not hit a lick anywhere last year, sub-.600 OPS at AAA last year, same so far this year. Has 2 homers since 2018 at all levels. I mean what’s the point – defensive replacement I guess? Knowing TLR, he will hit 6th against Bieber because he is a lefty!

texag10

Man, you really hate Haseley something fierce.

a-t

it’s been 43 PAs for Haseley and he’s 1) not impacting the ball but 2) walking more than he’s striking out. calm down

phillyd

Going oppo on a cold night in Birmingham is impressive.

jorgefabregas

I think Montgomery had two strikeouts (his first two ABs), not two walks. His sacrifice fly was near the warning track, for those on watch for his first professional homer.

Wondering if there’s room on Winston Salem for Smelley, who is old for Kanny. Also wondering how his defense is–think he had two throwing errors in a game recently.

jhomeslice

Maybe I’m naive to hope for anything from Cueto. I’ve just always liked him because he just seems like a cool, very animated and energized dude with a very interesting pitching style. Was great at one time.

If he can repeat what he did last year, it would be worlds better than Lambert/VV. Hope he can get ready quickly (along with Giolito) so we don’t have to see either of those guys more than a couple more times.

Last edited 2 months ago by jhomeslice
Torpedo Jones

I know we’re obviously still very early in the season, but I’m really encouraged by James Beard’s start. His .421 BABIP won’t sustain, but his walks and strikeouts are much improved so far. He’s still striking out quite a bit at 28% of his PAs this year, but that’s way down from 39%(!) of his PAs last season.

He’s not going to hit for power, but drawing walks and making contact might be enough given his off-the-charts speed on the basepaths. Especially if he can deliver quality defense in the outfield.

It’s also good to see they have him aggressively stealing when he gets on base. With 9 swiped bags this year, he’s already matched his total for all of 2021. I’d be curious to know why they didn’t have him attempting to steal more in his previous seasons. Seems like that would be a good way to let him grow his confidence since he has a natural advantage with his speed.

jorgefabregas

Yeah, he can now be on a similar track to Adam Engel, who didn’t make full season ball until his age 22 season.

joewho112

Those clips really make me appreciate major league camera crews. I have no idea how they find that tiny ball in the air so fast