Results tagged ‘ Kyle Bellamy ’

Opening Day roster breakdown

Top prospect Courtney Hawkins will receive plenty of attention in 2013 (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash).

Top prospect Courtney Hawkins will receive plenty of attention in 2013 (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash).

One of the final steps before the Dash’s season can begin is the release of the Opening Day roster, which happened today. Dash fans know about some of these 25 players, while others will suit up for Winston-Salem for the first time Friday at Carolina. Let’s take a look at all of these players and how they fit within the roster.

The top prospect:
OF Courtney Hawkins

No White Sox prospect will draw as much attention as Hawkins will during the 2013 season. Chicago’s first-round pick 10 months ago, Hawkins hit three homers and drove in seven runs in 12 High-A games last season. He will likely get a longer look at this level while trying to live up to the billing of being the Sox top prospect and one of the top 100 players in the minors.

The other ranked farmhands:
RHP Chris Beck, INF Joey DeMichele & C Kevan Smith

In addition to Hawkins’ place atop Baseball America’s White Sox prospect rankings, three other players who will open the season with Winston-Salem found themselves on the publication’s Top 30 list. Beck (10th) makes the jump from short-season Great Falls, while DeMichele (24th) is a player that many believe can climb the minor league ladder quickly. Most Dash fans remember Smith (27th) and his big grand slam in the SDCS-clinching win over Myrtle Beach last season. He will likely receive the majority of the playing time available behind the plate.

The returning hurlers:
RHP J.R. Ballinger, RHP Chris Bassitt, RHP Bryan Blough, RHP Justin Collop, RHP Terance Marin, LHP Max Peterson & RHP Steven Upchurch

The Dash’s pitching staff was one of the best in the Carolina League last season, and more than half of the Dash’s Opening Day pitchers suited up for Winston-Salem at some point last season. Pitching coach J.R. Perdew also returns after the tremendous 2012 season. All seven of these pitchers have had success at this level, which bodes well for the Dash in 2013.

David Herbek shined following a midseason promotion to High-A (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

David Herbek shined following a midseason promotion to the Carolina League (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

The “prove it” player:
INF David Herbek

Herbek’s 2012 season was unique. He hit just .214 in 43 games with Low-A Kannapolis, but the White Sox moved him up to Winston-Salem in late June. The Virginia native responded by swinging at a .313 clip in 47 games. Herbek figures to see significant time with the Dash, so will he be closer to his Kannapolis form or his Winston-Salem self? You have to like his chances to be a scary hitter on this circuit like he was down the stretch a year ago.

The new White Sox:
RHP Jeremy Erben, OF Nick Giarraputo & INF Mark Tracy

Three men on the 25-man roster were not with the organization last season. The White Sox signed Erben in spring training, just a few days after Arizona released him. Giarraputo is back in affiliated baseball after three seasons on the independent circuit. Tracy joined the Sox organization following a trade with Colorado. Former Dash outfielder Kenny Williams, Jr., was shipped to the Rockies in that deal. This trio will be hungry to contribute early on as White Sox farmhands.

The acquaintances:
INF Chris Curley, OF Mark Haddow & OF Billy Rice

These three men all joined Winston-Salem at some point last season, but the threesome combined for only 11 regular season games with the Dash. Curley shined in the final week of the regular season before hitting .500 in the CL postseason, while Haddow and Rice struggled a bit in their limited at-bats after playing well for Low-A Kannapolis. How will these three swingers adjust to a prolonged stay in the Triad? That answer may dictate how effective the offense will be this season.

The Kannapolis kids:
INF Grant Buckner, LHP Jarrett Casey, INF Joe De Pinto & RHP Daniel Webb

These four players spent most or all of their 2012 seasons with Low-A Kannapolis. The jump from Low-A to High-A is not an easy one, but all four of these men will get the chance to do it following spring training.

How will the catching duties be split among Kevan Smith, Martin Medina and Brent Tanner? (Dan Barber/W-S Dash).

How will the catching duties be split among Kevan Smith, Martin Medina and Brent Tanner? (Dan Barber/W-S Dash).

The catching couple:
C Martin Medina & C Brent Tanner

With Smith in the fold, how will skipper Ryan Newman find playing time for these two backstops? Both Medina and Tanner have shown promise in the minors, but there is only so many at-bats to go around. Last season, the Dash rarely had three catchers on the roster, so this will be a challenge for Newman and hitting coach Rob Sasser.

The comeback candidate:
RHP Cody Winiarski

Winiarski missed all of last season with a back injury, and he only has 17 career minor league efforts under his belt. Last season, Kyle Bellamy returned from a season-long injury to shine with Winston before heading to Double-A. Winiarski will look to do the same for the Dash in 2013.

Hopefully this gives you some more insight on the first roster for the Dash in 2013. The season is three days away, and we will have plenty more coverage leading up to Friday’s season opener here on the Dash Board.

- Brian

Counting Down To The Home Opener

If you follow our social media accounts (especially our new Instagram feed), you have probably noticed that we have begun a countdown in advance of the Dash’s home opener Friday, April 12. We are now 86 days away from the first game at BB&T Ballpark in 2013.

We have spun each day in the countdown to something in Winston-Salem baseball history. Occasionally on the blog, we will rehash the recent numbers, and here is our first look back at the countdown.

100 – Instead of a stat, we provided the picture below (and here on Instagram).

100

99 – After missing the 2011 campaign due to injury, Kyle Bellamy returned to Winston-Salem at the beginning of 2012. Opponents hit just .182 against Bellamy in 99 at bats.

98 – Scott Snodgress dominated the Carolina League after a July promotion from Low-A Kannapolis. He posted a 4-0 record and a 1.50 ERA to go along with a 0.98 WHIP.

97 – Carlos Lee is one of two Winston-Salem alums who is both currently in the big leagues and has made an All-Star Game (Chris Sale is the other). Lee played with the Warthogs in 1997.

96 – In his MVP season of 2011, Ian Gac drove in 96 runs for the Dash.

The Spirits won the CL crown in 1993.

The Spirits won the CL crown in 1993.

95 – In 1995, the Winston-Salem franchise became the “Warthogs,” a nickname that stuck until the team became the Dash in 2009.

94 – All-Star Brady Shoemaker notched 94 hits in Winston-Salem before his midseason promotion to Double-A Birmingham.

93 – The Winston-Salem Spirits won the Carolina League title in 1993.

92 – From last season’s team, the only player who was born in 1992 was Carlos Sanchez, who proved to be one of the CL’s top prospects.

91 – The Carolina League rolled the Carolina California League 9-1 in the 2012 Midsummer Classic at BB&T Ballpark.

90 – Speaking of scores, the Dash took the deciding Game 3 of the Southern Division Championship Series 9-0 against Myrtle Beach.

89 – Brent Morel, who returned to Winston-Salem for a rehab assignment this season, wore number 8 while with the Dash in 2009.

88 – The CL’s MVP this season, Dash first baseman Dan Black, drove in 88 runs.

87 – Winston-Salem posted the best record in full-season minor league baseball last year (87-51).

86 – Cyle Hankerd mustered 86 hits in just 71 games with the Dash this past season.

Those are 15 of our Dash-themed numbers. Do you have any ideas for numbers 85 to 1? Let us know in the comments or via Twitter. Baseball will be back before you know it!

- Brian

Dash Players Break Down Title Game

Alabama won the BCS National Championship Game last night in Miami, and many Dash alums had strong opinions about the game. A pair of 2012 All-Stars–Michael Earley and Brady Shoemaker–are diehard Notre Dame fans, while other Dash players wanted the Tide to roll. Here is some game analysis (and some jokes) from Winston-Salem’s boys of summer.

Thanks to these players and the rest of Twitter for making last night’s game more entertaining. Congrats to Alabama on the big win.

- Brian

New Attendance Record at BB&T Ballpark

On Wednesday the Dash celebrated the Fourth of July by playing in front of the largest crowd in the history of BB&T Ballpark. 7,285 fans were on hand to watch baseball and the post-game fireworks. There have now been nine crowds of over 7,000 people since BB&T Ballpark opened in April 2010.

1) July 4, 2012: 7,285 fans celebrate the Fourth of July at the ballpark. The Dash fall 8-4 to Myrtle Beach.

2) July 2, 2010: 7,268 people watch the Dash beat Potomac 4-2. Kyle Bellamy earned his fourth save of the season.

3) September 2, 2011: 7,207 fans witness the Dash score four runs in the seventh to walk off with an 8-6 win over Salem.

4) July 3, 2011: 7,143 in attendance as Winston-Salem falls 7-4 to Salem.

5) May 22, 2010: 7,122 see Nate Jones earn his fourth win as the Dash crush Lynchburg 11-4.

6) April 13, 2010: 7,111 fans witness the inaugural game at BB&T Ballpark, Winston-Salem falls 5-4 in 12 innings.

7) August 27, 2010: 7,094 fans watch the Dash win 5-2 over Myrtle Beach, no runs were scored after the fourth inning.

8) September 3, 2010: 7,073 close out the inaugural season at BB&T Ballpark with a 6-4 Dash win over Lynchburg.

9) August 27, 2011: 7,039 people watch Winston fall 3-1 in a pitcher’s duel against Myrtle Beach.

Here is how the largest  crowd in the BB&T Ballpark history looked from the fans themselves:

@harman11: Baseball on the Fourth of July (picture below)

@Hank226: Now is the time!!!! (picture below)

@pauldmulner: Despite the score it’s fun to watch to a game in a nearly-full stadum. Go @WSDashBaseball! (picture below)

Thanks to everyone who came out to BB&T Ballpark and spent your Fourth of July with the Dash. If you missed any of the excitement there will be post-game fireworks on Thursday and Friday night this week as well. As the second half kicks into gear we will see if the fans continue to push the attendance record to new heights at BB&T Ballpark.

-Mike

Dash All-Star Promotion

A new month brings another promotion. This call up will be a tough one to stomach though for Dash fans. Carolina League All-Star Brady Shoemaker moves up to Double-A Birmingham for the first time in his career. It is an inevitable part of minor league baseball when a player does well at a lower level he moves up through the system. It is great to see  Shoemaker get rewarded for a spectacular season, but the Dash will have to find a way to replicate the solid offense he brought to the team.

In a corresponding roster move Ross Wilson was recalled from Kannapolis. Wilson started the season with the Dash and played eight games in the infield, hitting just .167 before being sent down. However, in Kannapolis he prospered while developing into a multi-faceted infield and outfield player.

Wilson also found his power in Kannapolis. In his eighth game with the Intimidators Wilson drove in a career-high eight runs and slugged three home runs. He played in 64 games, finishing with a .277 average, seven HR and 33 RBI.

Brady Shoemaker leaves Winston-Salem after playing in 78 games with the Dash, compiling a .331 batting average, 13 HR and 59 RBI. He departs the Carolina League as the league leader in batting average, RBI, runs (61) and total bases (156). Shoemaker was also in the top five in a number of offensive categories, including home runs, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, and extra-base hits.

Brady Shoemaker moves up to Double-A for the first time after hitting .331with 13 HR and 59 RBI for the Dash (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

Shoemaker was named to an All-Star team for the second straight season after being named to the South Atlantic All-Star team in 2011. This year, Shoemaker represented the hometown Dash in the All-Star Game at BB&T Ballpark and won the Home Run Derby, beating former Winston-Salem Warthog C.J. Retherford in the final round.

The Dash will miss and possibly struggle to replace the offensive output Shoemaker contributed to the team, but what will be impossible to duplicate is his presence in the clubhouse. Shoemaker was well-respected by everyone on the team and essentially a de facto leader on the field. Shoemaker played in left field for 68 of his 78 games with the Dash. That stability and consistent production can be hard to find in the minors.

Shoemaker joins fellow position players Daniel Wagner and Jake Oester in Birmingham. Kyle Bellamy, Andre Rienzo, Spencer Arroyo, Nick McCully and Jon Bachanov comprise the Dash pitching that was promoted to the Double-A level during June.

A new month kicks off with more changes,  and the Dash will move forward with a new look in left field.

-Mike

Familar Face Returns to Winston-Salem

The White Sox announced a roster move Saturday that sends a familiar face with a new role back to Winston-Salem. Salvador Sanchez arrives after pitching in three games last week, two appearances for Bristol and one with Kannapolis. In a corresponding move, the Dash have released Jake Wilson.

Sanchez hit .241 with five home runs and 58 RBI in 115 games as an outfielder for the Warthogs in 2008. He returned to the High-A level in 2009 and was a member of the inaugural Dash roster. Sanchez recorded similar numbers to his previous season, hitting .246 in 114 games. His power did increase; Sanchez upped his home run total to 16 and finished with 63 RBI.

Sanchez played 114 games for the Dash in their inaugural season (Brian Westerholt/Four Seam Images).

Sanchez’s journey through the minors has been unique. He was signed by the White Sox in 2004 as an outfielder and reached as high as Double-A Birmingham, even making the Southern League All-Star team in 2010. He never got higher than Double-A and signed as a free agent with the Rangers organization in 2010. Texas converted Sanchez to a pitcher but cut him before the season began. The White Sox resigned Sanchez and decided to keep him as a pitcher.

Sanchez’s path as a pitcher is slowly progressing. The Dominican Republic native appeared in just two games last season for rookie Great Falls, throwing an inning of work in both appearances and allowing one hit.

This season, Sanchez began in rookie Bristol where he pitched two perfect innings, one on June 21 and another on June 23. Sanchez made one appearance for Kannapolis, recording a scoreless inning of relief.

It has been a busy month for transactions for the Dash. There were 25 transactions over the course of April and May, while June has seen 29 moves made affecting Winston-Salem. The flurry of activity began on June 8 when Kyle Bellamy was promoted to Double-A Birmingham. Six other Dash players followed him to Double-A over the course of this month.

Andre Rienzo returned from his 50-game suspension on June 14 and was sent up after being reinstated. Daniel Wagner and Spencer Arroyo were promoted two days after the All-Star break, with Jake Oester right behind a day later. This week Nick McCully and Jon Bachanov continued the exodus of talent from the Dash bullpen to Birmingham.

-Mike

Dash Add One, Promote Two

The White Sox made three roster moves affecting the Dash Tuesday.  Nick McCully was promoted to Double-A Birmingham, Kyle Shelton was sent back to Triple-A Charlotte, and Kannapolis infielder David Herbek moved up to the Dash. Both McCully and Herbek advance to a new level in minor league baseball for the first time, while Shelton is back with Charlotte after spending a brief stint with the Dash for the second time this season.

Nick McCully earned his first promotion to the Double-A level (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

McCully’s departure continues the exodus of talented arms from the Dash bullpen as he joins fellow relievers Leroy Hunt and Kyle Bellamy in Birmingham. McCully made 24 relief appearances for Winston-Salem and compiled a 4-3 record with a 2.89 ERA. He also converted five of his seven save opportunities.

This is McCully’s second year in the White Sox organization after being signed before the 2011 season. The St. Louis Cardinals drafted McCully in the ninth round of the 2009 draft and used him as a starting pitcher, but he was released after the 2010 season. Chicago’s idea to turn McCully into a reliever seems to have paid off.

Shelton played in one game for the Dash in his second stint with the team. He started at third on June 22 against Potomac and finished the night 1-for-3. The versatile Shelton, who can play almost every position in the field, took a few reps behind the plate as a catcher before batting practice on Monday.

Herbek joins the Dash after playing 43 games with Kannapolis this season. He batted .214 with 31 hits, nine RBI and 28 runs. Herbek was drafted in the 15th round of the 2011 MLB Draft out of James Madison University and spent last season playing for rookie-level Great Falls. Herbek hit .262 in 70 games and led the team in runs scored (52) and doubles (19). Baseball America also ranked him as the best defensive player in the White Sox 2011 draft class.

The Dash continue to lose pieces from their first-half Southern Division title, but such is the double-edged sword of minor league teams: good teams are going to lose their good players. With young talent in Kannapolis and the 2012 draft picks beginning their journey through the minors, Winston-Salem should be fine moving forward as the second half progresses.

-Mike

From North Carolina to Alabama to Arizona

In one fell swoop, the Dash roster underwent quite a bit of change Monday. Kyle Shelton was activated off the disabled list and sent to Triple-A Charlotte, Kyle Bellamy was promoted to Double-A Birmingham, and the Dash received pitcher Jake Wilson from extended spring training.

Shelton originally started the year with the Knights and came to the Dash after being placed on the DL in mid-May. The longtime Dash member played in five games, hitting .368 with a home run and five RBI. Shelton strained his left hamstring on May 30 and had been on the DL with the Dash. The promotion brings him back to Triple-A where he started the season and played in four games before being sent down.

Kyle Bellamy made 18 appearances for the Dash this season (Steve Orcutt/W-S Dash).

It was never a question of if, but rather when, Bellamy would get promoted. The Dash reliever started the 2010 season in Winston-Salem and ended with Double-A Birmingham. But Bellamy’s progress was halted after missing all of 2011 rehabbing a right shoulder injury. He appeared in 18 games this year for the Dash, compiling a 1.65 ERA and converting all four of his save opportunities in 27.1 innings of work.

The loss of Bellamy will certainly be felt among the fashionable Dash pitching staff. No word yet on who will replace Bellamy in the Throwback Thursday rotation.

Wilson, the newest member of the Dash, was drafted in the 32nd round of the 2009 draft out of New Mexico State. He spent the 2011 season in Kannapolis after pitching his first two seasons for Rookie Great Falls. Wilson was 4-2 with a 1.44 ERA and 63 strikeouts and nine saves for the Intimidators last season.

-Mike

Throwback Thursday – 3rd Edition

People have asked if the Dash’s pitching staff dresses better than any other in minor league baseball? We’ve already seen the Dash sport some awesome outfits this season.

If you missed it, Nick McCully, Justin Collop and Kyle Bellamy started the trend with these outfits in Lynchburg. A few days later, J.R. Ballinger, Jake Petricka and Chris Bassitt tried their luck with a new wardrobe.

Today, five hurlers may have set a new standard in baseball fashion.

From left to right, Jake Petricka, Kyle Bellamy, Nick McCully, Justin Collop and Chris Bassitt (Mike Lefko/W-S Dash).

Please give the guys some critiques in the comments section, and we will pass them along. The Dash are looking good on and off the field, that’s for sure.

- Brian

Pitching Fashion – Part 2

Last week, Kyle Bellamy, Justin Collop and Nick McCully started a very unique trend among Dash pitchers with these incredibly attractive outfits.

Today, three new pitchers raised the ante. Check out (from left to right) J.R. Ballinger, Jake Petricka and Chris Bassitt.

Which trio is better? Let us know in the comments.

- Brian

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