White Sox

White Sox: Carlos Sanchez used April demotion as motivation


White Sox: Carlos Sanchez used April demotion as motivation

OAKLAND — Carlos Sanchez performed well enough in spring training where he just as easily could have been named the White Sox starting job second baseman.

Rather than sulk after he was sent down to Triple-A Charlotte on April 11, Sanchez, who was recalled on Friday, said he used it as incentive to get back to the majors.

A two-time International League player of the week in 2015, Sanchez is starting and hitting ninth against the Oakland A’s on Friday night after he replaced fellow rookie Micah Johnson, who was sent to Charlotte on Thursday. Sanchez followed a strong spring by hitting .344 with 10 doubles, two homers and 17 RBIs at Charlotte.

[MORE: From experience, Rowand understands Johnson demotion]

“I knew I had a good spring training, and I tried to transfer that to Triple-A when the team sent me down,” Sanchez said through an interpreter. “I took it like something motivational for me, something good, to try to be the best player possible I could and try to develop all of my skills. I’m glad this opportunity came sooner than I was expecting.”

Sanchez has been on the White Sox radar since he was one of their top prospects headed into 2013. After he struggled that season, Sanchez has been on the rise, including a solid September performance in 2014. Sanchez said he was at his apartment in Charlotte on Wednesday when manager Joel Skinner called to inform him of his promotion.

“It’s always special,” Sanchez said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s the first time or second time. It’s always special when you get that news because you are welcomed to the big leagues again.”

White Sox manager Robin Ventura knows exactly what he has in Sanchez and is glad to be able to plug him in the lineup. Looking for a defensive boost, Sanchez brings a strong defensive skillset to the majors. Sanchez also has held his own in 107 major league plate appearances and hit .440 this spring.

[NBC SPORTS SHOP: Gear up, White Sox fans!]

“To have the ability to reach down and get somebody like Carlos in here to fill in we feel that’s one of our strong points is having guys like him that are down in the minor leagues and you’re able to reach down and get those guys,” Ventura said. “They know how to play and you trust them.”

Sanchez said he tried not to worry about getting back to the majors, instead focusing on how everyday reps at Charlotte might help him. He feels prepared to help the White Sox no matter what they ask of him.

“I kept doing what I was doing in spring training and the first week in the majors,” Sanchez said. “Being sent down, I took it as motivational, something to help me and to push me to be a better player. I think, in the end, the work was valuable because of the results. I am here because of that. I hope to continue doing my job and continue progressing as a player.”

White Sox, Cardinals to play doubleheader after Friday's game postponed

White Sox, Cardinals to play doubleheader after Friday's game postponed

The St. Louis Cardinals haven’t played a game since July 29.

But that’s scheduled to change, with two games against the White Sox on the same day.

The Cardinals, who have experienced 18 positive COVID-19 tests among players and staffers in recent weeks, are scheduled to finally return to action Saturday in a doubleheader with the South Siders at Guaranteed Rate Field. First pitch for Game 1 is scheduled for 1:10 p.m.

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The two teams were originally scheduled to begin a three-game series Thursday, with the Field of Dreams game in Iowa. That nationally televised showcase event was pushed to 2021 due to logistical reasons caused by the pandemic. That forced a switch to a regular three-game weekend set on the South Side, the first game of which, set for Friday night, was postponed after another Cardinals staffer reportedly tested positive Thursday.

So it will be three games in two days, the start of a Chicago-baseball marathon for the Redbirds, who will play eight games — including a trio doubleheaders — in five days against the White Sox and Cubs.

The Cardinals have seen 18 straight games postponed after playing just their fifth game of the season to cap a two-game set with the Minnesota Twins at the end of July. That’s a total of four entire series and three doubleheaders.

RELATED: White Sox Tim Anderson knows his impact on lineup better than anyone else

They’ve been out of action for two weeks, and that’s a pretty big hole blown in what was already a shortened and compressed 60-game schedule. The daunting task ahead of trying to make up so many games in such a brief amount of time before the regular season ends Sept. 27 has generated talk of imbalanced records across the league and what Major League Baseball might have to do should numerous teams finish the year without having played the same number of games.

Obviously, that could have a dramatic effect on playoff seeding in the expanded postseason fields, which grew to include eight teams in each league. While it might sound like a quick fix to simply pluck the Cardinals out of the running for a playoff berth in the National League, doing so would create even more headaches for the teams who were supposed to play them. That includes the White Sox and all their AL Central rivals, putting them in a wildly different situation than teams from the AL East and AL West, with whom they are competing for wild card spots. And it could change things within the AL Central race, too, with the Detroit Tigers waiting to find out when they'll play the four-game series they were supposed to play against the Cardinals last week.

And so the Cardinals will attempt to resume their season Saturday on the South Side. Though like everything involving the 2020 Major League Baseball season, and the Cardinals' campaign in particular, things have the potential to change in a hurry.


White Sox Talk Podcast: Dallas Keuchel's wakeup call to the White Sox


White Sox Talk Podcast: Dallas Keuchel's wakeup call to the White Sox

After an embarrassing loss to the Detroit Tigers on Monday, Dallas Keuchel called out his teammates in person and in the media to be better and it seems to have worked.

Chuck Garfien and Ryan McGuffey discuss Keuchel's leadership in the White Sox locker room, and the team's response to Keuchel's comments. They also dive into Tim Anderson's return to the lineup after coming back from injury and his home run trot after crushing a ball.

(2:00) - Keuchel's importance to the White Sox

(6:40) - Should Rick Renteria have called out the team instead of Keuchel?

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(11:00) - Tim Anderson's leadoff home run trot

(16:30) - White Sox bullpen is coming through

Listen here or below.

White Sox Talk Podcast