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Now that Seby Zavala has returned from the disabled list, the catcher rotation with Zack Collins is back on.
White Sox roving catching instructor John Orton has been traveling with the big-league club because that’s where the catchers need the most immediate help. Omar Narvaez leads the league in passed balls with abysmal framing numbers, and Alfredo Gonzalez has looked overwhelmed by the emergency call to the majors.
How are these connected? Orton being in Cleveland gave James Fegan the opportunity to get an update on defensive progress from the Barons’ tandem. Zavala is the one who seems ahead, based on this:
“Seemed like this spring and even in the [Arizona] Fall League a little bit last year, some things started to really click for him defensively,” Orton said of Zavala. “Receiving-wise, he’s always had really good hands, but he kind of quieted it up and is just a real solid receiver right now. Just being around the veteran pitchers of the fall league helped him just go to the next level as far as running a game. He’s always been a super smart, super sharp kid, a kid that cares about the pitching staff, which is No. 1, but now he kind of has a really good feel.”
“I think Double-A starting off the year was a big jump for [Collins] offensively and defensively, so he kind of got off to a slow start offensively, so we kind of left him alone on the defense side because I didn’t want to throw too much at him,” Orton said. “He was kind of, I’m not going to stay struggling, not having the results he wanted offensively. The defensive side of it, it takes a while to kind of catch up. He didn’t have a ton of games at the A-ball level to get him ready for Double-A. He was kind of behind that way, I guess, but definitely seen improvements lately.”
- Jordan Stephens: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 2 HR
- Thyago Vieira: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
- Danny Mendick went 1-for-3 with a walk.
- Zack Collins was 0-for-1 with three walks.
- Eloy Jimenez’s three-run homer in the first was his only hit in four at-bats, and resulted in all the scoring.
- Seby Zavala was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts.
- Jameson Fisher doubled, singled and struck out twice.
- Tito Polo was 1-for-2 with a sac bunt.
- Spencer Adams, everybody: 8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K on 90 pitches.
- Luis Alexander Basabe went 1-for-4 with a double and two strikeouts.
- Ti’Quan Forbes, 0-for-3 with a strikeout and an HBP.
- Alex Call went 2-for-4 with a double, strikeout and stolen base.
- Micker Adolfo drew a walk and struck out thrice.
- Joel Booker, 1-for-4.
- Yeyson Yrizarri, 0-for-3 with a walk.
- Bernardo Flores: 8 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 5 K