Prospect Shuffle – White Sox Edition
Roster moves in minor league baseball always pique some fans’ interests, but there has not been a day quite like this one involving the Dash in some time.
The White Sox announced four moves affecting the Dash this morning. A pair of top prospects–infielder Carlos Sanchez and right-handed hurler Jake Petricka–has been promoted to Double-A Birmingham.
The Dash have received two solid players in return. Righty Erik Johnson, Chicago’s second-round selection last year, earned his first promotion to the Carolina League from Low-A Kannapolis. Finally, utility man Daniel Wagner is back with Winston after spending exactly one month with Birmingham.
Let’s begin with Sanchez, who likely capped off his Carolina League career with a 4-for-5 showing last night at BB&T Ballpark. Sanchez, who just turned 20 in late June, sits fifth in the Carolina League with a .315 batting average to go along with 42 RBI and 19 stolen bases. He also paced all Dash swingers with 32 multi-hit efforts. Sanchez’s time to shine came in the All-Star Futures Game earlier this month, and he went 1-for-2 and chipped in with two great defensive plays at third base.
Petricka, the number five prospect in the White Sox system according to Baseball America, had an up and down season with Winston-Salem. He went 5-5 with a 5.33 earned run average in a team-high 19 starts. Petricka shined in multiple outings, including his seven-inning blanking of Carolina June 2 at BB&T Ballpark. The righty made one spot start for Double-A Birmingham in May, but this promotion figures to be a long-term move.
There is no doubt that the Dash will miss both Sanchez and Petricka, but they are receiving a solid duo in return. Johnson joined the Intimidators at the start of June and he was a key cog in the club’s rotation. The 80th overall pick in last year’s draft, Johnson posted a 2-2 record and a 2.54 ERA in his eight starts in the South Atlantic League. In 39 innings of work, the former California Golden Bear whiffed 35 and limited opponents to a .238 average.
Finally, Winston-Salem will get Wagner back after a one-month stint with Double-A Birmingham, where he hit .270 with seven RBI in 19 games. While with the Dash, Wagner owned a .253 average with a homer and 18 RBI in 51 games. The Belmont product posted a 13-game hitting streak from May 15-28, and he proved to be very versatile with the Dash. Wagner played at four different positions during the first half with Winston (second base, third base, center field and right field).
There have been plenty of roster moves lately, but this is what the White Sox want to see happen. Players are thriving at the High-A level, so they make the climb to Double-A. So far, the Dash have been able to remain at the top of the heap in the Carolina League, and this is likely to continue with more talent waiting at the lower levels.
Winston and Frederick continue a three-game series tonight at 7:00. Pre-game coverage begins at 6:45, and you can tune in here. Talk to you then.