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White Sox promote prospect Tyler Saladino

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Tyler Saladino
Tyler Saladino
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Word this afternoon is that the Chicago White Sox have promoted infielder Tyler Saladino to the major league roster. Here's a quick take.

Saladino played college baseball at Oral Roberts and had an excellent 2010 season, hitting .381/.464/.678 with 17 homers and 16 steals. His perceived tools didn't quite match the numbers but he was still respected enough to be drafted in the seventh round. He beat up the South Atlantic League after signing (.309/.397/.442), giving hope that the college numbers weren't a fluke. He then showed considerable pop in 2011 by hitting 17 homers with a .270/.363/.501 line for High-A Winston-Salem.

The transition to Double-A wasn't easy: he hit just .237/.359/.321 for Birmingham in 2012 then just .229/.316/.314 in 2013, though he did steal a combined 64 bases those two seasons. However, 2014 was much better: he hit .310/.367/.483 for Triple-A Charlotte, restoring his lost power.

Alas, that was in just 82 games, his season ending early with Tommy John surgery. He's back this year and was hitting .255/.342/.372 for the Knights, a comedown from last year, but it does combine with last season to give us a full campaign of composite Triple-A data: 149 games, .282/.352/.423 with 13 homers, 53 walks, 99 strikeouts, and an outstanding 33 steals in 36 attempts.

(video from Futuresox.com, also check their profile of Saladino)

Saladino is 6-2, 200, a right-handed hitter born July 20, 1989. As you can see from his track record, his production has been quite erratic. At times he shows impressive pop but sometimes it vanishes for months at a time. His strike zone judgment is fairly decent and he is excellent at using his speed on the bases. He has experience at all four infield positions as well as left field. Second base is his best position but he's not bad at shortstop and third base and can play those spots without hurting you. His makeup is considered very strong.

Overall, Saladino looks like a valuable utility/role player with his versatility, speed, and occasional pop. He probably isn't consistent enough with the bat to be a year-after-year regular, although when he's on one of his hot streaks he can rack up some impressive numbers.