Top 10 White Sox Prospects
Baseball America is regarded as the go-to spot for Minor League Baseball analysis, so its prospect rankings are always interesting. Yesterday, the publication released its top 10 White Sox prospects entering the 2013 season.
Winston-Salem enjoyed a banner year on the field, so it should not be surprising that many members of this list donned the Dash purple at some point this season. However, even the most optimistic Dash fans have to be excited to see that the organization’s top seven prospects contributed to Winston’s surge to the Mills Cup Finals.
You can read the entire piece from Baseball America here. Check out the list of the top 10 players, which includes details of their work in 2012:
1. OF Courtney Hawkins
Chicago’s first-round pick in June, Hawkins began his White Sox tenure with short-season Bristol before August promotions to Low-A Kannapolis and Winston-Salem. With the Dash, Hawkins was 5-for-17 in five regular season games before hitting a pair of homers in the club’s postseason run.
2. OF Trayce Thompson
Thompson spent most of the 2012 season in the Carolina League, and he finished atop the circuit with 90 RBI. He then played 14 games with Double-A Birmingham before joining Triple-A Charlotte for its playoff journey. Currently, Thompson is hitting .200 with two homers and seven RBI in 15 games in the Arizona Fall League.
3. INF Carlos Sanchez
One of the high risers on the White Sox farm, Sanchez shined in 92 games with the Dash. He finished with the CL’s top batting average (.315) before hitting .370 in 30 Double-A games. Sanchez finished the campaign in Triple-A Charlotte and is now thriving in the AFL (.312 average and 16 RBI in 20 games).
4. RHP Erik Johnson
Johnson joined the Dash’s rotation in late July and immediately became one of the circuit’s best hurlers. Seven of his eight starts in Winston-Salem were quality starts, and both of his playoff starts showed flashes of dominance.
5. OF Keenyn Walker
The White Sox minor league system is loaded with outfield talent, and Walker’s compliments the likes of Hawkins and Thompson with his speed. Walker finished in the top 10 in the minors with 56 combined swipes between Kannapolis and Winston-Salem.
6. LHP Scott Snodgress
Snodgress joined Johnson in Winston-Salem halfway through the second half, and the duo helped the Dash seize the top record in full-season minor league baseball. Despite pitching out of the bullpen in college, Snodgress joined the rotation and boasted a 1.50 ERA in eight efforts.
7. RHP Andre Rienzo
Rienzo overcame a 50-game suspension to record one of the best seasons by a White Sox pitching prospect in 2012. The Brazilian crushed CL competition in the first month and eventually made his way to Triple-A Charlotte. He could be a factor for the Sox in spring training.
8. INF Keon Barnum
Barnum was the White Sox second pick in this year’s draft, and he hit .279 in 13 games with short-season Bristol. The 19-year-old could make his way to Winston-Salem with a strong showing in the offseason and throughout the first half of the 2013 season.
9. OF Jared Mitchell
Mitchell is yet another solid outfield prospect within the White Sox system. He struggled with strikeouts last year in the Carolina League, but a bump to Birmingham helped him immensely. He does not have a great batting average in his minor league career (.237 in 293 games), but the potential is certainly there.
10. RHP Chris Beck
The White Sox pegged Beck in the second round of this year’s draft, and the righty turned in a 4-3 record and a 4.69 ERA in 15 appearances (six starts) with rookie-level Great Falls. He should see some time in Winston-Salem in 2013.
Tomorrow, we will go over some of the other superlatives Baseball America bestowed on some former Dash stars.