Results tagged ‘ Kannapolis Intimidators ’

Plenty of roster moves announced Tuesday

Brandon Hardin is heading to Double-A for the first time (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

Brandon Hardin is heading to Double-A for the first time in his career (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

The Dash’s roster looks a bit different now than it did when the club was concluding its road trip in Lynchburg on Monday. Here is a look at what the White Sox announced Tuesday morning:

  • RHP Brandon Hardin promoted to Double-A Birmingham from Winston-Salem
  • RHP Myles Jaye assigned to Winston-Salem from Double-A Birmingham
  • INF Zach Voight promoted to Winston-Salem from Low-A Kannapolis
  • INF Nick Basto assigned to extended spring training from Winston-Salem

Hardin thrived in the back end of the Dash’s bullpen. He posted a 1.32 earned run average in 13.2 innings over 14 outings. The former Delta State product concludes this stint with Winston-Salem by recording a streak of seven consecutive scoreless outings, during which he logged four saves. He becomes the sixth Dash player promoted to Double-A or Triple-A thus far this season.

Jaye rejoins Winston-Salem after beginning the season with the Barons, which is where he finished the 2013 season. Jaye started the final game of Birmingham’s run to the Southern League Championship, a deciding Game 5 against Mobile last September. Thus far this season, Jaye struggled in the SL, posting an 0-6 record to go along with a 6.32 ERA. However, the former Toronto farmhand was stellar with the Dash in 2013. He went 9-6 with a 4.11 ERA in 20 starts in the Triad.

Voight will play in the Carolina League for the first time. In 26 games with the Intimidators, Voight hit .237 with one homer and eight RBIs. A 20th-round pick in 2012, the Denton, Texas, native led all White Sox farmhands with a .320 average and a .417 on-base percentage with rookie-level Great Falls a year ago.

Basto has been strong at the plate for Winston-Salem thus far this year. He leads all qualifying hitters on the club with a .293 average, and he also has driven in 20 runs.

Stay tuned for a full preview of Tuesday’s homestand opener with Potomac.

– Brian

One promotion out; another promotion in

Bryan Blough picked up four saves before heading to Double-A Birmingham (Laura Marshall/W-S Dash).

Bryan Blough saved four games before joining Double-A Birmingham (Laura Marshall/W-S Dash).

Four days ago, the Dash went through a double promotion, with Tyler Danish joining Winston-Salem from Kannapolis when Mike Recchia jumped to Double-A Birmingham.

On Monday morning, the White Sox announced a similar move, this time within the Dash’s bullpen. Right-hander Bryan Blough is heading to Double-A for the first time. In a corresponding move, southpaw Jose Bautista is set for his first stint in the Carolina League.

Blough has been with Winston-Salem since August of 2012, when he joined the Dash during their push to the Mills Cup Finals. He was an integral part of the Dash’s bullpen during that stretch run, and he became the Opening Day starter for Winston-Salem in 2013. Blough led the CL and finished second in the Minor Leagues with 172.2 innings pitched. He also paced the league in starts (28) and finished tied for the top spot in wins (11).

This season, Blough returned to the bullpen and posted a 1.93 earned run average in 13 appearances. He also logged four saves in five tries.

Bautista boasted a 0.92 earned run average in 10 appearances out of the Intimidators’ bullpen this year. The Dominican Republic native struck out 26 in 19.2 innings. He signed with the White Sox as an international free agent in 2009.

The Dash are enjoying their only day off this month on Monday. Winston-Salem embarks on an eight-game, seven-day road trip Tuesday.

– Brian

Danish on his first High-A start

Tyler Danish did not give up an earned run in his senior season at Durant High School (Photo via

Tyler Danish did not give up an earned run in his senior season at Durant High School (Photo via

Right-hander Tyler Danish will make his High-A debut Sunday afternoon against Frederick. Here are a few crazy notes on Danish in advance of his first effort in a Dash uniform:

  • Danish has not given up a run in his last 22 innings, a streak that dates back to April 23.
  • He has never given up more than one earned run in any of his first 22 Minor League appearances.
  • His 0.71 earned run average is third among qualifying Minor League pitchers and second among current Minor Leaguers.
  • Since the start of 2013, Danish boasts an ERA of 0.39. This includes his senior season of high school, when he did not surrender an earned run in 94 innings.

Danish will join us on the Pregame Dash at 1:45. You can catch the interview on Here are a few snippets from a great chat with the newest member of the Dash.

On what kind of pitcher he is:
“I’m an aggressive one. Just go out in the zone, get early swings and get early ground balls.”

On the pitch that needs the most work:
“I definitely need to work on my slider. I get a little behind on it, release it behind my head. It makes it just spin and it doesn’t move much. So, I’ve been working on trying to get out in front on my slider a lot more.”

On his time with Kannapolis:
“That team was fun to be around. It felt like a team atmosphere. We had fun every single time we went out there. That team likes to play and likes to play hard, so I’ll hopefully see some of those guys up here. It was just a fun team to be around altogether.”

On his first impressions of BB&T Ballpark:
“This is five-star for me. This is probably one of the best parks I’ve seen in the Minor Leagues. It’s an amazing place. It was breathtaking when I got here.”

Stay tuned for a full preview of Sunday’s series finale between Winston-Salem and Frederick.

– Brian

Danish, Recchia moving up

Tyler Danish has not given up a run in his last 22 innings (Ray Marsden/Kannapolis Intimidators).

Tyler Danish has not given up a run in his last 22 innings (Ray Marsden/Kannapolis Intimidators).

Minor Leaguers’ primary goal is to advance in their organization. Two White Sox farmhands have jumped a level, the club announced Thursday. Tyler Danish, Chicago’s second-round pick in 2013, has joined the Dash from Low-Kannapolis, while fellow righty Mike Recchia is heading to Double-A Birmingham for the first time in his career.

Danish sizzled in the South Atlantic League to the tune of a 3-0 record and a 0.71 earned run average. The Florida native boasts the lowest ERA among active, qualifying Minor League pitchers. Chase Anderson does still qualify with a 0.69 ERA, but he was recently promoted to Arizona from Double-A Mobile.

Though he was strong in all seven outings with Kannapolis, Danish dominated in his final four efforts. He concluded his time with the Intimidators by rattling off 22 consecutive scoreless innings dating back to April 23.

In 22 career appearances in the Minor Leagues, Danish owns a 0.93 ERA (seven earned runs in 68 innings). The 19-year-old was drafted out of Durant High School in Plant City, Fla.

Danish will take Recchia’s spot in the rotation; therefore, the righty is slated to begin his High-A career Sunday at home against Frederick.

Recchia also thrived in seven starts before his promotion. He went 4-3 with a 2.90 ERA, which is good for the ninth-lowest mark in the Carolina League. The Worth, Ill., native also sits second in the CL and fourth in all of High-A baseball with 47 strikeouts.

This time last season, Recchia was in independent baseball with the Windy City ThunderBolts. The White Sox inked him to a deal in June, and he made 12 starts with the Dash from early August of 2013 until his final outing Tuesday in Myrtle Beach. He went 5-3 with a 3.71 ERA, capping his time in the CL with back-to-back seven-inning showings.

A key to Recchia’s success this season was his ability to shut down the first batter of the inning. He pitched 40.1 innings, which means he started 41 frames. Only five of those 41 leadoff hitters reached against him (three singles, one walk and one hit by pitch).

Fans can hear from Recchia on tonight’s Pregame Dash, which begins at 6:45 on 600 AM-WSJS in Winston-Salem. Stay tuned for a preview of tonight’s series lid-lifter against Frederick, which will be posted here on the Dash Board later today.

– Brian

More moves in the Dash’s bullpen

Dash righty Brandon Hardin is heading to the seven-day disabled list (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash).

Dash righty Brandon Hardin is heading to the seven-day disabled list (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash).

Two days after receiving left-hander Sean Bierman from Low-A Kannapolis, the Dash have added another former Intimidator southpaw to their bullpen. Sean Hagan will make his first trip to High-A, the White Sox announced Saturday morning. To make room for Hagan, the Sox placed right-hander Brandon Hardin on the disabled list, retroactive to Thursday.

A 31st-round pick from 2013, Hagan spent all of last season with short-season Great Falls, amassing a 6.19 earned run average in 17 relief efforts. He broke camp with Kannapolis and performed well in four outings. The St. John’s product surrendered just two runs in seven and two-thirds innings against South Atlantic League hitters.

Hardin, who has been a strong arm in the Dash’s bullpen over the last 12 months, has also made four appearances thus far this season. In three and a third innings, the Pinckneyville, Ill., native has given up just one run. Hardin’s last outing was last Saturday at Wilmington.

With the moves, the Dash’s roster sits at the Carolina League maximum of 25 players, along with four men on the disabled list. Stay tuned for a full preview of tonight’s game between the Dash and Salem Red Sox.

– Brian

Winston-Salem tweaks bullpen

After two outings in Kannapolis, southpaw Sean Bierman has made the leap to the Dash (photo via the Kannapolis Intimidators).

After two outings in Kannapolis, southpaw Sean Bierman has made the leap to the Dash (photo via the Kannapolis Intimidators).

The Dash’s roster has not changed much thus far this season, but the White Sox did announce a pair of promotions affecting the Winston-Salem bullpen on Thursday afternoon. Evan Crawford has jumped up to Double-A Birmingham after two efforts in the Carolina League, while fellow southpaw Sean Bierman has earned a spot in the Dash’s clubhouse after starting the season in Low-A Kannapolis.

Crawford, who logged 10 appearances with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2012, joined the White Sox organization via the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 Draft. He tossed two and two-thirds innings with Winston-Salem over two outings and surrendered two runs (one earned) on one hit. He will head to the Double-A level, where he has made 80 appearances over his seven-season minor league career.

Thanks to this promotion, the Dash have added another left-hander in Bierman, who made two starts with the Intimidators to begin the season. Bierman, who went 0-1 with a 7.00 earned run average in those efforts, was 11-8 with a 3.00 ERA in 31 outings with the Tampa Bay organization. He came over to the White Sox from the Rays as one of the players to be named later in the Jesse Crain trade, which was agreed to in July and completed in October.

As a result, the Dash’s roster remains at 25, with 13 of those men being pitchers. Winston-Salem aims to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Frederick Keys tonight at 7. A full preview is on the way later.

– Brian

A look around the White Sox system

Each team in the system is at least 10 games into the season, so let’s spin around the organization and see how each team is doing thus far this season.

MLB: Chicago White Sox (7-6)

Former Dash star Jordan Danks (right) is ready to fill in for Avisail Garcia in the White Sox outfield (photo via

Former Dash star Jordan Danks (right) is ready to fill in for Avisail Garcia in the White Sox outfield (photo via

Chris Sale improved to 3-0 this season after Friday’s outing against the Indians, but the White Sox bats played a big role in the outcome. Sale grinded through five innings, allowing three runs and six hits while striking out five. The ace spoke with the Chicago Sun-Times following his start.

Infielder Marcus Semien has played well of late, recording hits in nine of his last ten games. Among those was this solo homer on Sunday against Cleveland:

In this article, learn more about Erik Johnson’s standing in the Chicago pitching rotation. Plus, Semien takes part in Jackie Robinson Day festivities on Tuesday and who Sale credits for the development of his changeup:

Thanks to the season-ending shoulder injury to Avisail Garcia, outfielder Jordan Danks was called up from Triple-A Charlotte to help fill the void. The Dash alumnus spoke with CSN Chicago about the opportunity:

Triple-A: Charlotte Knights (6-6)

Catcher Josh Phegley is off to a solid start in 2014. His .286 batting average currently ranks second on the team among qualifying players, and he has scored four runs in eight games.

The other BB&T Ballpark looks pretty darn good, too (photo via Charlotte Knights).

The other BB&T Ballpark looks pretty darn good, too (photo via Charlotte Knights).

The Knights opened their sparkling new Uptown Charlotte facility, the second BB&T Ballpark, on Friday night against the Norfolk Tides. For a recap of their historic evening, click here.

Double-A: Birmingham Barons (5-5)

The defending Southern League champions won three of five games against the Jacksonville Suns to reach the .500 mark. The Barons were washed out at Mobile on Monday night, so a doubleheader is on tap this evening.

Former Dash outfielder Trayce Thompson was recently profiled on talking about some of the valuable lessons he learned during Spring Training with the White Sox.

Low-A: Kannapolis Intimidators (4-7)

The Intimidators were swept in a four-game series at Greenville this weekend, the last contest a heartbreaking 5-4 setback to the Drive in 14 innings. Kannapolis looks to regain its footing this week in Hickory. That series opener was also postponed, so the Intimidators and Crawdads will play two this evening.

Infielder Cleuluis Rondon continues his development at the Low-A level. The Venezuelan native, who celebrated his 20th birthday on Sunday, is batting .298 with six RBIs, three runs scored and three stolen bases in 11 games.

Stay tuned for a preview of tonight’s homestand opener against Frederick.

– Dave

Recapping the weekend around the system

The rainy off-day for the Dash means that it’s a perfect time to scroll through the White Sox system to see how the teams and some former Dash players are doing.

Chicago White Sox (3-3):

Chris Sale dazzled in his start against the Royals on Sunday, tossing eight scoreless innings while striking out six. Following his outing, Sale told, “You know what you’re getting when you face a team like this and a starter like James (Shields). You’ve just got to bear down and give it everything you’ve got.” Sale is now 2-0 on the season with a 1.76 ERA on the young season.

Marcus Semien has received plenty of congratulatory high fives so far in 2014 (Ed Zurga via

Marcus Semien has received plenty of congratulatory high fives so far in 2014 (Ed Zurga via

Infielder Marcus Semien has started all six games, playing at second base and third base. With Gordon Beckham recovering from an oblique injury, the Chicago Sun-Times discussed Semien’s attempt to convince White Sox management to keep him in the lineup.

Erik Johnson struggled in his first start with the South Siders this year, allowing seven runs against the Royals on Friday. Fellow Dash alum Jake Petricka also pitched in that contest. Johnson spoke with the Chicago Tribune following his start, and you can read about that here.

Nate Jones, who pitched with Winston-Salem from 2008-10, allowed four runs in two outings and failed to retire a single batter. He was sent to the disabled list on Friday with a strained hip muscle, and could miss more than two weeks. Before he was placed on the DL, Jones told CSN Chicago’s Dan Hayes about his discomfort.

Charlotte Knights (3-1):

Dylan Axelrod, who pitched for the Dash in 2009 and 2010, had a solid outing against Norfolk on Sunday, allowing just one run in five innings while striking out seven batters. The Knights won that game, 2-1.

Former White Sox slugger Jim Thome will be tossing the ceremonial first pitch at Charlotte’s home opener in their new ballpark on Friday, April 11 against Norfolk. Thome, who played with the Knights in 1993, spoke with about his time there.

Birmingham Barons (1-2):

The defending Southern League champions won their opener against Montgomery before losing two straight games. Following a rainout on Sunday, the Barons are playing a doubleheader against the Biscuits today to conclude their five-game opening series.

Former Dash infielder Micah Johnson is off to a hot start in Birmingham, hitting .462 with a home run, two RBIs and four runs scored in three games. Johnson was recently featured on prior to Opening Day.

Kannapolis Intimidators (2-2):

The Intimidators split their opening weekend series with Greenville and return to Kannapolis for their scheduled home opener against Hickory tonight.

Tyler Danish, a second-round draft pick of the White Sox last year, shined for Kannapolis in their Friday night victory over Greenville. The 19-year-old pitcher struck out six over five innings while allowing no earned runs.

That’s your look around the White Sox system. The Dash will take the field again Tuesday night at Salem, trying to cool off a Red Sox team that started 2014 with a weekend sweep of Myrtle Beach. All three games of that series are scheduled to begin at 7:05 p.m. Join Brian Boesch for the Pregame Dash at 6:50!

– Dave

Micah Johnson sprints to Double-A

Micah Johnson is taking his minor league-leading steal total up to Double-A Birmingham (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

Micah Johnson is taking his minor league-leading steal total up to Double-A Birmingham (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

Two days after earning a spot in the prestigious Arizona Fall League, infielder Micah Johnson was promoted to Double-A Birmingham for the first time in his minor league career, the White Sox announced this afternoon. This will be the third different level that he has played at this season, continuing his quick rise through the system.

Johnson has had a phenomenal first full season in the minors. He paces all of Minor League Baseball with 83 stolen bases, 10 more than Cincinnati Reds’ prospect Billy Hamilton. Hamilton stole a single-season minor league record with 155 swipes a year ago, but he has only mustered 73 in Triple-A this season.

A ninth round pick in the 2012 draft, Johnson has also been among the minor league leaders in runs scored throughout the season. Currently, he is in a tie for fourth-most in that category, having scored 104 times between Low-A Kannapolis and Winston-Salem this season.

The former Indiana University Hoosier has had a great season at the plate, boasting a .315 average in 126 games this year with the Intimidators and the Dash, giving himself plenty of opportunities to collect all those stolen bases and runs.

In his time here in Winston, we learned a lot about Johnson, including the reason he is so fast. With the Barons, Johnson will be joining a team that has already clinched a spot in the Southern League playoffs after they took the Northern Division’s first half title.

Winston-Salem will look to continue their nine-game winning streak tonight against the Potomac Nationals at BB&T Ballpark. A win would tie the Dash era (2009-present) for the longest winning streak, set by last year’s incarnation of the Dash. Check back later this afternoon for a preview of tonight’s contest.

– Rob

A look around the system

Chris Sale tossed his fourth complete game of the season to headline a big week for Dash alums (Dave Bilbrough/WS-Dash).

Chris Sale tossed his fourth complete game of the season to headline a big week for Dash alums (Dave Bilbrough/WS-Dash).

There have been many Dash alums in the news as of late, so today we decided to highlight some of the biggest news from a few of our alums over the last several days.

Sale dominates Tigers

The week started on a high note at the big league level as 2010 Dash alum Chris Sale tossed his fourth complete game of the season in a 6-2 win over Detroit on Monday. The southpaw lowered his ERA to 2.73 and pushed his strikeout total to 167 for the season, both which rank him in the top five among American League starters. After an extra-inning victory last night, the South Siders can sweep the first-place Tigers with a victory today.

Heisler’s stint in Triple-A

With plenty of roster shuffling happening over the last week or so in the organization, Triple-A Charlotte found themselves in need of an extra outfielder. As a result, Adam Heisler, who had recently been transferred to Kannapolis after hitting .272 in 58 games with Winston-Salem, was the man selected for the trip down to Fort Mill, S.C.

Simply put, Heisler delivered. He played in three games for the Knights, going 4-for-10 with two runs scored and two RBIs. He returned to the Intimidators last night, and all he did was hit a grand slam, the first one by an Intimidator in 2013.

Beck makes Double-A debut

Late last week, righty Chris Beck, who was an All-Star in the Carolina League this year, made his debut for the Birmingham Barons against the Mobile BayBears. Beck drew a tough assignment, with right-hander Archie Bradley, one of the most highly touted pitching prospects in the minors, on the other side. The former Winston hurler held his own, giving up three runs in six innings to notch a quality start, but he was outdueled by Bradley and saddled with the loss. Beck will try to collect his first Double-A win again tonight against the Jacksonville Suns.

Fellow 2013 Dash alum Cody Winiarski made his Double-A debut last night, and pitched very well for Birmingham. The right-hander gave the Barons two spotless innings of relief while striking out three Suns. Winiarski was promoted to Double-A on Monday after saving 10 games for the Dash in a team-high 36 appearances.

Great Falls has gotten off to a 12-2 record in the second half, giving them a great chance to make the playoffs for the seventh straight year.

Great Falls’ 12-2 record in the second half has given them a great chance to make the Pioneer League playoffs for the seventh straight year.

Great Falls’ hot streak

The White Sox Pioneer League affiliate, the Great Falls Voyagers, has been extremely hot as of late. After finishing four games out of first in the first-half standings, the Voyagers have come out firing on all cylinders in the second half.

They had their nine game winning-streak come to an end yesterday with a 10-4 loss to Ogden but are a sizzling 12-2 in the second half. Through 14 games, the Voyagers already enjoy a six-game lead in the division race.

If Great Falls wins the second half, they will make the Pioneer League playoffs for the seventh consecutive year. The last two years they made it under current Winston-Salem skipper Ryan Newman, who guided them to the 2011 Pioneer League Championship.

The Dash open up a quick three-game homestand tonight at BB&T Ballpark as they welcome the Salem Red Sox to town. Check back later today for a preview of tonight’s series opener.

– Rob


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