Bulls

On The Farm: Sox Draft Picks Have Big Day At Bristol

On The Farm: Sox Draft Picks Have Big Day At Bristol

Monday, Aug. 16, 2010
Posted: 10 p.m.
By Kevin Czerwinski
CSNChicago.com

WHITE SOXBristol Rookie
While some teams were sweating out whether their draft picks would sign by the time Mondays deadline passed, the White Sox got to watch as some of their draft picks continued to impress. Consider 12th-rounder Drew Lee from Morehead State. The infielder had another big game for Bristol, which upended Kingsport, 7-2.

Lee was 3-for-5 with a pair of homers and three RBIs. The two round-trippers doubled his output for the entire season while the three RBIs gave him 33.

Jordan Keegan, a 24th-rounder from the Junior College of Southern Nevada, also had three hits, including a solo homer while Mike Schwartz, a 17th-rounder from the University of Tampa, had three hits, too, extending his hitting streak to six games.

It all made a winner of Spencer Arroyo 6-2, who allowed a run on five hits over six innings.

Kannapolis A
Savannah swept a doubleheader from the Intimidators, taking the opener 1-0 before coasting to a 9-3 victory in the nightcap.

The Sand Gnats took the opener on the strength of a John Church one-hitter. He allowed only a first-inning single to Brady Shoemaker. The only other runner to reach base was Jose Vargas, who walked in the fifth. Justin Collup pitched a two-hitter for Kannapolis, going the distance but allowing a run on Nick Santomauros RBI double in the fourth.

Zach Piccola allowed seven runs over two innings in the second game to suffer the loss. Nick Ciolli had a pair of hits and an RBI.

In other action, Winston-Salem scored a pair of ninth-innings runs but still came up short against Salem, dropping a 4-3 decision at BB&T Ballpark. The Dash managed only four hits. Terry Doyle took the loss after giving up three runs on six hits over six innings.
CUBS Peoria A
A trio of pitchers put on a brilliant show Monday evening as Peoria completed a sweep of Kane County with a 4-0 victory at Elfstrom Stadium.

Su-Min Jung started and allowed three hits over three innings before Jeff Antigua scattered three hits over five innings to earn his fourth win of the season and first since June 8. He struck out a season-high seven and didnt walk a batter. Ronny Morla pitched the ninth, preserving the shutout and moving the Chiefs to within three games of a playoff spot in the Midwest League.

Jae-Hoon Ha followed up the cycle he produced on Sunday with a three-hit game on Monday. Luis Flores had a double and drove in two.

In other action, Tampa downed Daytona, 5-3, to up its lead to two games in the Florida State Leagues North Division. DJ LeMahieu had three hits. Alberto Cabrera took the loss. Chattanooga scored seven fourth-inning runs and ran by Tennessee, 8-2. Brandon Guyer returned to the lineup after missing several days with an eye infection and went 3-for-4, scoring twice. He extended his hitting streak to 17 games during which he is batting .477 31-for-65.

Kevin Czerwinski can be reached at ktczerwinski@gmail.com.

Zach LaVine's conditioning at '70 percent' but still on schedule

0109_zach_lavine_bulls.jpg
USA TODAY

Zach LaVine's conditioning at '70 percent' but still on schedule

Everybody saw the play, that awkward instance where Zach LaVine looked ready for his second dunk of the season but was fouled from behind by Atlanta’s Taurean Prince.

It looked as if LaVine was ready for liftoff but one of his jets misfired, sparking at least the thought of his recovery from his ACL injury being a bit off—but he laughed at the thought.

“I don’t know why everybody keeps talking about it,” LaVine said Sunday at New Orleans’ Smoothie King Center, where the Bulls held practice. “The dude stepped on the back of my foot, so I couldn’t get off the ground. Everybody’s wondering if I’m okay, yeah. I just missed a fouled layup.”

The adrenaline from his first two games have worn off a bit, and he missed his first four shots from the field Saturday before hitting a couple in the start of the third quarter in the Bulls’ 113-97 win over the Hawks.

He looked winded a few times during his stint and admitted his conditioning isn’t where it should be—as expected given he’s missed 11 months of real basketball. He said his conditioning is at about “70 percent”, and you can certainly see it in his jump shot not being as fluid as it was last season in Minnesota.

“It was feeling good in practice but in games it’s seventy,” LaVine said. “Playing defense, getting back, running the break, just getting used to it.”

Add to it, the Bulls cover the most halfcourt ground of any team in the NBA with their set offense and Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg has long said he’s not slowing down his offense while LaVine is in.

The shooting guard will have to catch up to the pace, and it’ll probably be better for him in the long run.

“I think it’s just ‘okay’ and rightfully so,” said Hoiberg about LaVine’s conditioning. “It’s impossible to simulate game action in practices when you’re doing individual workouts. Every time he plays that conditioning will ramp up. As he plays, it’ll get better and better. And he’s such a good and natural athlete, it’ll come back quickly.”

Hoiberg isn’t concerned about the variances in LaVine’s performances. He came out the gate with such force and adrenaline in his debut against Detroit and two days later against Miami, but it’s tailed off against Golden State and then Atlanta.

“I think Zach’s doing great,” Hoiberg said. “You look around the league where players have come back from significant injuries, he’s gonna be up and down. His first two games he’s been unbelievable. A couple games he hasn’t shot the ball great. He played unselfish basketball last night.”

LaVine’s minutes has been extended to 24 from 20, and he’ll still practice in the off-days as the Bulls want to keep his rehab on schedule as opposed to having him play heavy minutes initially.

He’ll be re-evaluated after Wednesday’s game in Philadelphia and could see his minutes rise before the Bulls host the Lakers Friday at the United Center.

“I should just get used to it,” LaVine said. “Just getting used to the swing of things. It takes a second for your body to get adjusted to it.”

Three Things to Watch: Bulls visit Pelicans

1-22_pelicans_matchup_nba_chi_blank.jpg

Three Things to Watch: Bulls visit Pelicans

Here are Three Things to Watch when the Bulls take on the New Orleans Pelicans tonight on NBC Sports Chicago and streaming live on the NBC Sports app. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. with Pregame Live.

1. Anthony Davis

The five-time All-Star just continues to improve. While he's not averaging career-highs in any major category, no one's going to scoff at his 26.7 points, 10.5 rebounds, 1.1 steals and 2.1 blocks in 36 minutes per game. He's shooting nearly 56 percent from the field and is on pace for a career-best in 3-pointers made, which is a pretty impressive statistic. Lauri Markkanen will have his hands full, and it may be in the Bulls' best interest to get Nikola Mirotic some early minutes to try and get physical with Davis. There's no real way to slow him down.

2. DeMarcus Cousins

And if the Bulls should so happen to get lucky and slow down Davis, there's another All-Star starter waiting alongside him. Boogie Cousins has been every bit as good as Davis this season, averaging 25.3 points, 12.7 rebounds and 5.1 assists in 36 minutes. He's certainly not as efficient as Davis (47 percent from the field, 5.0 turnovers) but is deadly inside. He's shooting a career-best 52.8 percent on 2-pointers this season, and his 1.6 steals and 1.6 blocks make him a serviceable defender (although the Bulls could certainly stretch their offense to make him work more).

3. Rajon Rondo

Rondo hasn't been great in his first season with the Pellies, but perhaps he's turning things around. Beginning with his absurd 25-assist game just after Christmas, Rondo is averaging 7.4 points, 8.2 assists and 1.0 steal per game. He's allowed Jrue Holiday to play more off the ball, and while his defense is nothing to write home about he's logging solid minutes for a Pelicans team woefully short in the backcourt.