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Chicago White Sox Top 20 prospects for 2017: Mid-season review

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Reviewing the pre-season White Sox prospect list.

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Chicago White Sox
Yoan Moncada
Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

We continue our mid-season organization reviews with a look at the Chicago White Sox Top 20 Prospects from the beginning of 2017. The index for other team reviews can be found here.

This list was originally published January 3rd, 2017.





1) Yoan Moncada, 2B-3B, Grade A: Age 22, signed by Red Sox out of Cuba in 2015; traded to White Sox in Chris Sale deal; hit .282/.377/.447 for Triple-A Charlotte with 12 homers, 17 steals, 49 walks, 102 strikeouts in 309 at-bats; should provide power, OBP, and steady defense; contact and a strong home/road split in Triple-A lead to some short-term batting average concerns but a long and productive career should be expected.

2) Lucas Giolito, RHP, Grade A-/B+: Age 23, first round pick by the Nationals in 2012, traded to White Sox in Adam Eaton deal; very erratic season in Triple-A, has had some dominant/outstanding outings and some really bad ones; overall line is weak with 5.38 ERA and 106/48 K/BB in 97 innings, 97 hits; stock lower by any realistic measure, still young enough to come around but we’re at the point where expectations must be tempered.

MLB: Spring Training-Texas Rangers at Chicago White Sox
Michael Kopech
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

3) Michael Kopech, RHP, Grade A-/B+: Age 20, first round pick in 2014 by the Red Sox, came over in Sale trade; 3.51 ERA in 92 innings in Double-A, 114/55 K/BB, 64 hits allowed; extreme hard thrower with some command issues but stuff is so good it hasn’t mattered yet, ahead of Giolito now on depth chart/prospect lists.

4) Reynaldo Lopez, RHP, Grade B+: Age 23, signed by Nationals out of Dominican Republic in 2012, another component of Eaton trade; 3.65 ERA in 106 innings in Triple-A, 107/40 K/BB, 90 hits; occasional command wobbles still happen but he’s ready for a full major league trial and has moved ahead of Giolito.

5) Carson Fulmer, RHP, Grade B+: Age 23, first round pick in 2015 out of Vanderbilt; 5.42 ERA in 95 innings in Triple-A, 66/48 K/BB, 96 hits; at this point I think the skeptics were correct and he is better-suited for bullpen work.

6) Zack Collins, C, Grade B+: Age 22, first round pick in 2016 from University of Miami Hurricanes; hitting .218/.363/.440 with 15 homers, 64 walks, 101 whiffs in 284 at-bats in High-A; showing expected power and patience but with a concerning strikeout rate; needs to improve receiving some but has also thrown out 41% of runners; despite low batting average I’d hold the grade steady right now.

7) Zack Burdi, RHP, Grade B: Age 22, first round pick from University of Louisville in 2016, 4.05 ERA in 33 innings in Triple-A, 51/17 K/BB; now out with Tommy John surgery; blistering stuff with some command issues, will have to see how he recovers.

8) Dane Dunning, RHP, Grade B: Age 22, first round pick in 2016 from University of Florida by the Nationals, another segment of the Eaton deal; 2.94 ERA in 98 innings between Low-A and High-A with 112/28 K/BB; very successful season so far, can move him up to B+.

9) Alec Hansen, RHP, Grade B: Age 22, second round pick in 2016 from University of Oklahoma; 2.62 ERA in 96 innings between Low-A and High-A, 119/34 K/BB; like Dunning he’s doing very well and his grade will bump up a notch to B+.

10) Spencer Adams, RHP, Grade B-: Age 21, second round pick in 2014, 3.98 ERA in 118 innings in Double-A with 93/22 K/BB, 123 hits; doesn’t have the physical upside of the guys ahead of him but throws strikes and could be a solid workhorse type.

11) Luis Alexander Basabe, OF, Grade B-: Age 20, signed by Red Sox from Venezuela in 2012; part of the Sale trade; hitting .222/.322/.330 with five homers, 15 steals, 42 walks, 91 strikeouts in 324 at-bats in High-A; good tools but Carolina League has exposed issues with his swing; very young of course.

12) Jameson Fisher, OF, Grade C+: Age 23, fourth round pick in 2016 from Southeastern Louisiana; hitting combined .255/.352/.416 with 22 doubles, seven homers, 43 walks, 85 strikeouts in 329 at-bats; somewhat of a blah season but not horrendous, would like to see more power.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Chicago White Sox
Michael Ynoa
Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

13) Michael Ynoa, RHP, Grade C+: Age 25; long-term prospect originally in Oakland Athletics system lost years to injuries but finally got to majors in ’16; 29 innings in MLB bullpen this year with 5.90 ERA, 23/22 K/BB, 28 hits; sent back to Triple-A on July 8th; back of the bullpen guy unless he dramatically improves his command.

14) Dylan Covey, RHP, Grade C+: Age 25; fourth round pick in 2013 by Athletics; selected in December 2016 Rule 5 draft; stuck with the club out of spring training and made eight starts but with ugly 8.12 ERA, 22/16 K/BB and 52 hits in 38 innings; went on disabled list with strained oblique in late May and still there.

15) Charlie Tilson, OF, Grade C+: Age 24, drafted by Cardinals in second round in 2011 from high school in Illinois; traded to White Sox for Zach Duke; on disabled list all year with foot fracture.

16) Jake Peter, INF-OF, Grade C+: Age 24, seventh round pick in 2014 from Creighton University; hitting .278/.343/.384 between Double-A and Triple-A, patiently waiting for a shot as a versatile bench asset.

17) Jordan Stephens, RHP, Grade C+: Age 24, fifth round pick in 2015 out of Rice University; started year on disabled list but came back in June and has been effective, 1.33 ERA in 47 innings in Double-A with 37/12 K/BB; track record of injuries but good success record when healthy.

18) Alex Call, OF, Grade C+: Age 22: third round pick in 2016 out of Ball State University; injured most of the season with strained intercostal, painful ribs; hitting just .135/.246/.221 in 104 at-bats split between A-ball and rookie ball rehab assignment; gets an injury mulligan for this year.

19) Matt Cooper, RHP, Grade C+: Age 25, 16th round pick in 2014 from University of Hawaii; 4.75 ERA in 75 innings in Double-A with 77/26 K/BB; went on “inactive” list in June and has yet to return; specific reason is undisclosed but press reports say this is not an injury or PED issue.

20) Jacob May, OF, Grade C+: Age 25, third round pick in 2013; hitting .252/.314/.327 with 19 steals in 278 at-bats in Triple-A, but hit just .056 in 36 major league at-bats; speed and defense remain in play but just not enough power or plate discipline to move past reserve role.


Victor Diaz, RHP: Hurt most of year, 12.00 ERA in 12 innings in A-ball, 14/10 K/BB.

Adam Engel, OF: .228/.304/.337 in 101 at-bats in the majors, standout athlete but questionable bat.

Bernardo Flores, LHP: 3.72 ERA in 97 innings in A-ball, 84/25 K/BB.

Luis Martinez, RHP: 5.52 ERA with 42/22 K/BB in 46 innings between Low-A and High-A.

Jordan Guerrero, LHP: Breakthrough season in Double-A, 3.65 ERA with 112/29 K/BB.

Amado Nunez, SS: 34 at-bats so far in the Pioneer League, .206/.308/.353; sample too small to mean anything.

Several people have asked me for an updated (rather than a reviewed) White Sox list accounting for the recent trades. I will do that in the comments section, so scroll down and we’ll talk about it.