White Sox

Mike Olt ready, excited for opportunity with White Sox

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Mike Olt ready, excited for opportunity with White Sox

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Mike Olt chose to stay ready in case the phone rang rather than focus on his uncertain future.

Instead of coming in cold, the newest member of the White Sox said Sunday he has a sense of feeling prepared despite a week-long layoff between games. Olt -- who was designated for assignment by the Cubs on Monday and claimed by the White Sox on Saturday -- opted to stay with Triple-A Iowa and work out in the interim. His decision would seem to have paid quick dividends as White Sox manager Robin Ventura didn’t hesitate to start Olt in Sunday’s series finale against the Kansas City Royals.

“I never really thought about (my future),” Olt said. “I didn’t want to think about it. I just wanted to stay focused on staying ready and being prepared so when I did get a chance, if it happened, I wanted to be ready to at least take advantage of it.”

Olt -- who had a .265/.333/.460 slash line with nine homers and 25 RBIs in 59 games at Iowa -- last appeared in a game on Aug. 29 two days before he was DFA’d. But instead of heading home for the offseason, Olt asked if he could remain with the team, which had just opened a five-game series at Oklahoma City. He was granted permission and worked out as much as he could, staying with the team as it traveled to Round Rock, Texas on Friday. Olt said he received news of the White Sox claim on Saturday and made the quick flight to Kansas City.

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“He says he’s ready to go, so we’re going to find out and put him out there,” Ventura said. “It brings an extra dimension to our lineup. Lately, we’ve been hitting some homers. I don’t know if they knew he was coming, but we’ll see if he can add to it.

“Everybody is a little different. It’s something with his work ethic and everything else he’s got going. That’s a good sign. It paid off for him because he kept working out and he’s ready to go.”

The White Sox are still in search of a long-term answer at third base and Olt -- who has 83 homers in the minors -- will get a look. He’s appreciative for the opportunity and ready to get going.

“I’ve had kind of a crazy career and the one thing about it, everything happens for a reason,” Olt said. “I’m excited to get another opportunity here and try to take advantage of it and just excited to get going.”

Michael Saunders joins Triple-A Charlotte: A potential addition to White Sox banged-up outfield?

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USA TODAY

Michael Saunders joins Triple-A Charlotte: A potential addition to White Sox banged-up outfield?

The White Sox could use some help in the outfield.

Did a reinforcement just join Triple-A Charlotte?

Former Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Michael Saunders signed with the White Sox organization Monday, joining up with Charlotte.

Saunders, 31, has parts of nine major league seasons under his belt. Last year, he split time with the Blue Jays and the Philadelphia Phillies, posting a .202/.256/.344 slash line with six homers and 21 RBIs in 73 games.

The year prior he made his as-of-yet only All-Star appearance, slashing .253/.338/.478 with 24 homers in 140 games with the Jays.

The White Sox currently have both Opening Day corner outfielders on the shelf. Avisail Garcia has been on the disabled list for almost a month with a hamstring strain, and the team announced over the weekend that Garcia's injury is bad enough that it will likely keep him out until late June. Nicky Delmonico suffered a broken bone in his hand during the recently completed series with the Texas Rangers and will miss four to six weeks.

The White Sox have been giving playing time to Adam Engel, Leury Garcia, Daniel Palka and Trayce Thompson. But Engel and Thompson are both batting under .200, while Palka has an on-base percentage under .300.

So perhaps, with his major league experience, Saunders might make an appearance on the South Side sometime this summer.

Daily White Sox prospects update: Zack Collins hits a pair of homers

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NBC SPORTS CHICAGO

Daily White Sox prospects update: Zack Collins hits a pair of homers

Here's your daily update on what the White Sox highly touted prospects are doing in the minor leagues.

Double-A Birmingham

Zack Collins hit two home runs as part of a three-hit day. He drove in two runs, scored two runs and walked once in a 10-4 loss. Collins now has seven homers on the campaign with an ungodly .421 on-base percentage. He's batting .326 over his last 25 games. Eloy Jimenez had two hits and a walk, and Jordan Guerrero gave up four runs and walked five in four innings.

Class A Winston-Salem

The Dash lost both games of a doubleheader, 10-5 and 7-0. Luis Alexander Basabe, Alex Call and Gavin Sheets each picked up two hits on the day.

Triple-A Charlotte

Charlie Tilson had a hit and scored a run in a 2-1 loss.

Class A Kannapolis

Luis Gonzalez had a hit in a 2-1 win.