Ryan Bukowiecki is a student at the Illinois Media School and a contributor to The D & Davis Show and WARR where he follows the White Sox
The White Sox had an up and down week in a multitude of ways. Bright spots, along with the Yolmer Sanchez walk-off from last night seen above, include the call up of a few big name pitching prospects as well as playing the role of spoiler to a couple teams fighting for the playoffs.
Unfortunately the injury bug resurfaced and took down a must-watch player in Yoan Moncada. The farm system stayed quiet compared to the last few weeks but one of the Sox prized assets had a memorable achievement.
Memorable moments were on also on display on the major level, as a couple young players had moments to be proud of amidst a mostly forgettable year on the field.
Calling all arms
The Sox called up a pair of important arms from Triple A Charlotte, Carson Fulmer and Lucas Giolito. Now, neither of the youngsters were able to pick up the win but one faired much better than the other. Fulmer really struggled in his 2017 debut, going only 1.1 innings and surrendering 6 earned runs off 4 hits with 3 walks and 0 strikeouts. Fulmer has been dealing with control issues of late in the minors and that continued at the major league level.
Fulmer has been very up and down in his Sox career. Even with the struggles, Fulmer has good stuff and still could be a potential starter but if things don’t turn around within the next season then the Sox may look at him more as a reliever.
Giolito, like Fulmer, is another potential starter for when the Sox get good again, his Sox debut was encouraging though not flashy. Giolito went 6 IP and had good command with 0 walks and 4 strikeouts. The Twins were able to get 6 hits with 3 of those being home runs. Giolito did not have a good command of his breaking stuff and was still able to go 6 innings. Homers aside, it was an encouraging first start for the young hopeful ace.
A pitcher that is deserving of some love, especially with how important he is to the organization, is pitcher Carlos Rodón. Rodón had a very disappointing first half in what seemed like a pivotal season for the lefty, but Rodón has sure turned it around as of late. In the month of August he has posted a 2.45 ERA striking out 28 and walking 7.
Looking at some of the advanced metrics, he has a WHIP of just 1.06 and his fielder independent ERA of 3.32 makes for all around outstanding. This is a great sign for Sox fans and hopefully he can finish strong in a somewhat disappointing season and maybe that will set him up to take off in 2018.
David And Goliath
It has been noted that the Sox are fighting for the worst record in baseball this season, which would provide the franchise with the prized first pick in next year’s draft. So ultimately it is better that the Sox lose but it sure is fun watching them play spoiler to teams fighting to make the playoffs.
The Sox are currently a bad baseball team, for teams like the Twins and Rangers the Sox are a potential spark for a win streak. In this past week, at least, those teams did not fair as well as they would have liked. The Rangers are fighting for a wildcard berth and a sweep of the Sox would have helped, but the Sox were able to split the series. The split was highlighted by a two-home run game from Nicky Delmonico last Friday, one of which was inside the park. Another good start from Miguel González helped the team get through a 3-2 win Sunday in the series finale.
Similarly, the Twins are fighting for a wildcard spot and had hoped to sweep or at least win the 5 games slated at Guaranteed Rate Field, but the Sox continued to show up. The 3-2 series win for the Sox was highlighted by a game-tying hit from Moncada only to be followed by a game winning hit from Tim Anderson in Game 4 of the series on Wednesday.
Moncada ripped an RBI double in the 8th to tie the game. Then in the 9th inning Tim Anderson hit the walk off single that scored Avisail Garcia and beat the Twins — hopefully this will be a familiar scene in the years to come.
The Dreaded Injury Bug
The only thing that can ruin the call up party this season — injuries. All the young players being called up can have a terrible rest of 2017 and it ultimately wouldn’t matter, there just won’t be a large enough sample size to draw from to make complete decisions on players.
Growing pains are expected with young players and that can still be fun to watch but players with pain is never fun. Reynaldo Lopez is still on the 10 day DL and will be joined now by Moncada who has hit the 10 day DL for the second time this year with a shin bruise.
Yoan’s injury does not look to be severe and it sounds like Lopez’s injury is progressing nicely. Injuries are apart of the game and hopefully there won’t be anymore, the sad part is that both players had been looking good before their injuries.
On The Farm
- Jake Burger had himself a day on Thursday. The 3rd baseman hit for the cycle in a 6-5 victory over Greensboro in an 11-inning marathon. Burger didn’t need the extra innings for his cycle, his four at-bats went single, homer, triple, walk and a double in the 9th.
- Michael Kopech picked up his first win at Triple A Charlotte in his debut. Though Kopech did not have his best stuff he was able to battle and do enough, his stat line was 5 IP giving up 2 ER off of 6 H with 2 BB and 4 strikeouts.
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