Chicago White Sox Top 20 PRE-SEASON Prospects in Review
This list was originally published December 22, 2008. This is a review of the PRE-SEASON list for 2009, not a revision of that list. This is a REVIEW of the old list. I'm not doing new grades or lists until I start working on the 2010 book.
1) Gordon Beckham, SS, Grade B+: Hitting .272/.350/.455 for the White Sox. He got promoted faster than anticipated and has been everything the White Sox could possibly expect.
2) Aaron Poreda, LHP, Grade B+: Traded to the Padres. 3.90 ERA with 100/67 K/BB in 102 innings combined between Double-A Birmingham, Triple-A Charlotte, and Triple-A Portland. 2.45 ERA with 12/8 K/BB in 11 major league innings. He needs some command refinement and is probably better-suited for relief work.
3) Tyler Flowers, C, Grade B: Hitting .297/.423/.516 combined between Birmingham and Charlotte. Solid overall.
4) Brandon Allen, 1B, Grade C+: Traded to Arizona. Hitting combined .298/.373/.503 between Birmingham, Charlotte, and Triple-A Reno, has hit .243/.300/.486 in 11 games for the D-backs. Has come a long way this year.
5) Clayton Richard, LHP, Grade C+: Traded to the Padres. 4.61 ERA with 94/59 K/BB in 125 innings combined. An average pitcher pretty much but that has value.
6) Jordan Danks, OF, Grade C+: Hit .322/.409/.525 for Class A Winston-Salem, then .250/.343/.357 for Double-A Birmingham. Production hasn't carried to higher level, though he's still drawing walks at least.
7) Chris Getz, 2B, Grade C+: Hitting .266/.323/.364 with 18 steals in 20 attempts for the White Sox. Would like to see higher OBP and/or more pop, but this is in line with expectations overall.
8) John Shelby, OF, Grade C+: Hitting .246/.323/.394 with 29 steals in 38 attempts for Double-A Birmingham. Not great production, but has improved plate discipline compared to last year and still has a chance to be interesting.
9) Jose Martinez, OF, Grade C+: Missed entire year with injuries.
10) Dayan Viciedo, 3B, Grade C+: Hitting .279/.316/.388 for Birmingham. Not living up to pre-season expectations. Again, beware of players who are nothing but glowing scouting reports with no numbers to back them up.
11) Brent Morel, 3B, Grade C+: Hitting .278/.335/.447 for Winson-Salem with 23 steals in 31 attempts. Has some pop to go with the speed.
12) Dan Hudson, RHP, Grade C+: Amazing season, 14-5, 2.32 with a 166/34 K/BB in 147 innings combined between Class A Kannapolis, Winston-Salem, Birmingham, and Charlotte, with little deterioration in components between levels. I called him as a big sleeper pre-season and that's one that really panned out.
13) Dexter Carter, RHP, Grade C: 3.13 ERA with 143/32 K/BB in 118 innings for Kannapolis. Traded to Padres, 12.86 ERA with 23/15 K/BB in 21 innings for Class A Fort Wayne. Command really fell apart after the trade.
14) Jeff Marquez, RHP, Grade C: 9.85 ERA with 27/22 K/BB in 46 innings for Charlotte, 72 hits allowed. Ugly numbers all-around.
15) Jon Link, RHP, Grade C: 4.14 ERA with 64/25 K/BB in 54 innings for Charlotte, 54 hits, 11 saves. Good strikeout rate. Might be a decent reliever.
16) Cole Armstrong, C, Grade C: Hitting .252/.287/.427 for Charlotte. I don't think he'll hit enough to be useful.
17) Justin Cassel, RHP, Grade C: 5.78 ERA with 51/38 K/BB in 90 innings, 109 hits allowed for Triple-A Columbus. Not a prospect at this point.
18) Jack Egbert, RHP, Grade C: 4.94 ERA with 77/30 K/BB in 106 innings, 127 hits for Charlotte. I've seen him as a sleeper but he's just not doing it in Triple-A.
19) John Ely, RHP, Grade C: 2.93 ERA with 118/48 K/BB in 150 innings for Birmingham, 137 hits. A solid season, will move to Triple-A in '10 and try to repeat.
20) Jon Gilmore, 3B, Grade C: .269/.315/.352 for Kannapolis. Lack of power looks like an issue.
The White Sox were thin to begin with, so the graduation of Beckham and trades of Poreda, Allen, and Richard thin things out even more. Hudson looks terrific and I'm very pleased that I had him on my sleeper lists pre-season. There are lots of slots available for 2009 draftees to move into. I particularly like first round pick Jared Mitchell and second round pick David Holmberg.