By now, youve probably heard the red-hot rumor: TheWhite Sox are interested in Brewers pitcher Zack Greinke. Kenny Williams has already traded for third baseman KevinYoukilis and reliever Brett Myers. Doesthe White Sox GM have the green light to pull off another trade of suchmagnitude? The answer not only appears to be yes, but according toWilliams, hes not stopping there.I think its safe to say if theres been an impactperson out there that can help this club, weve made that phone call, Williamssaid Tuesday in an interview with Comcast SportsNet. Youd be surprised at some of the phonecalls weve made.He didnt offer up any names, so youll have to use yourimagination. However, when I mentionedGreinke, as well as Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster, and whether he made phone callsinquiring about them, Williams didn't avoid the answer.You wouldnt be off base, Williams said. I cant deny any rumors. You havent heard me deny any rumors unlessits something that I feel is going to take away from the focus of one of ourguys, and then I might come out and say, No, so-and-so is safe. Were notlooking down that road.Williams never came to the defense of any of the pitchersin his rotation. Feel free to draw yourown conclusions.Pressing him a little further, I said to Williams, Itsounds to me like youre going after Greinke.Looking at my notebook, he replied light-heartedly, Itsounds to me like there are other questions on that pad.To make a trade for a front-line starter, Williams coulddeal a player from his current roster, or dig into the White Sox farm systemthat has been panned by critics, but has proven to be much better thanpreviously thought with so many pitchers coming up and succeeding at the majorleague level.Does Williams feel a sense of redemption?Well yeah. Id be lying if I said otherwise, Williamsadmitted. I looked up last week or theweek before and we had nine rookie pitchers, forget about position players, rookiepitchers on darn nearly half the team. Theyre learning on the fly, gettingtheir major league shoes underneath them and theyve done an admirable job. Allwere requiring them is to go out there and be aggressive and do theirbest. So far, were in a good positionto contend for a division and build. When you have that many young players, you have a foundation to build. Alittle bit of rebuilding at the same time were in contention, its a goodplace to be.Not as good as first place, where the White Sox wereperched from June 24th until last Saturday when the Tigers took over the topspot. But Williams isnt losing sleepover it.Theyll have another bad stretch, he said about theTigers. Just like weve gone through a bad stretch here. Its all timing. Wecaught them when they were their hottest and we were at our coldest. But Idont think the Tigers think were going away.When it comes to making trades, neither is Kenny.
It’s the All-Star Break, so why not take a look back at the first 58.6% of the White Sox season.
They may not be contending quite yet, but there have been several interesting moments.
Focusing on the hitters, let’s take a look at ten amazing achievements this season. And while there may be several to list for some players, I’m going to limit it to one fact per player. Let’s go.
- On March 29 (Opening Day), Matt Davidson became the 1st player in MLB history to hit 3 Home Runs in a game in March.
- On April 23, Yoán Moncada (22 years, 331 days) became the youngest player in White Sox history with a double, triple & HR in the same game, passing Tito Francona (24 years, 205 days) on 5/28/1958.
- Daniel Palka recorded a triple on May 22nd, making him the first player in White Sox history with 3 triples & 3 HR within his first 20 career MLB games.
- On July 3, Palka (LF) & Avisaíl García (RF) became the second pair of White Sox outfielders to each hit 2 HR in the same game; the other pair? Minnie Miñoso (LF) and Larry Doby (CF) on July 30, 1957.
- On May 28, Matt Skole became the first player in White Sox history with a home run AND a walk in his MLB Debut.
- The lone White Sox walkoff Home Run of 2018 was off the bat of a player who hit .116 for the Sox this season (Trayce Thompson on May 3 – he went 14 for 121 this season for the Southsiders).
- The White Sox have started a game with backto-back home runs four times in franchise history. 9/2/1937, 7/4/2000, 9/2/2017 & 6/12/2018. Each of the last 2 times, Yolmer Sánchez hit the second home run.
- On June 23, Tim Anderson became the first White Sox shortstop ever to homer on his birthday.
- On June 27, José Abreu hit his 136th career HR and passed Minnie Miñoso for most by a Cubanborn player in White Sox history. He hit one more since.
- Leury García managed to become the first White Sox player with at least 10 stolen bases (he has 10) without being caught before the AllStar Break since Mike Cameron (13 for 13) in 1997.
After getting just two hits with the Arizona League White Sox, a team for rookies, Nick Madrigal made a big splash in his Low-A debut with the Kannapolis Intimidators.
Madrigal went 3 for 4 with two singles, a double, a walk, a stolen base and two runs scored on Tuesday afternoon against the Hagerstown Suns.
It may only be one game, but the fourth overall pick by the White Sox in this year’s MLB draft looks ready to play. Madrigal was almost perfect on his first day, obtaining a .750 batting average with a 1.800 OPS. That’s a pretty promising performance for the infielder who can play shortstop and second base.
Even though the 21-year-old hasn’t even struck out in the minors yet, he wasn’t quite as successful in the Arizona League. In five games and 13 at-bats, Madrigal achieved only a .154 batting average with two runs scored and one RBI. But he’s making up for those numbers.
So far with the White Sox organization, the Oregon State product isn’t walking at a shocking rate. He’s not striking out at all, either. Madrigal proved he’s an efficient contact hitter in college where he only struck out seven times in 2018. At the same time, he only hit three home runs, but he can have sneaky power at times.
Standing at 5-foot-7, 161 pounds, Madrigal was a force to be reckoned throughout his time in the Pac-12 Conference. Last season in college, he impressed many major-league scouts with a .367/.428/.511 slash line and 34 RBIs. He missed time with a hairline fracture in his hand after sliding into home plate back in February, but his strong junior year comeback performance helped make him a 2018 first-round pick.
He was just as good in his first two seasons with OSU. As a freshman in 2016, Madrigal had a .333/.380/.456 slash line with 29 RBIs in 49 games played. In his 2017 sophomore season, the talented hitter played in 60 games, tallied 40 RBIs and attained a .380/.449/.532 slash line with four homers, making it his most powerful season.
In three seasons playing Division 1 baseball, Madrigal also stole a combined 37 bases. He capped off his NCAA career with a College World Series title back in late June. His past production influenced White Sox director of scouting Nick Hostetler in the draft.
Madrigal will try to prove his critics right. Oregon State head coach Pat Casey thinks the young infielder could quickly work his way up to the majors.