Yoan Moncada’s first month at the Triple-A level went well, with the 21-year-old second baseman hitting a healthy .330 with five home runs and a .938 OPS in 23 games.
After struggling a bit in relatively meaningless spring training at-bats, Moncada is hitting like the guy the White Sox felt so confident in when they dealt ace Chris Sale to the Boston Red Sox last December. The plan always was for Moncada to begin 2017 in Triple-A, with the White Sox — even with their competitive start to the season — sticking to a patient approach to developing all of their highly regarded prospects.
Eventually, though, Moncada should make his way to the major leagues, where the White Sox expect him to stick once he’s called up. But he’s not thinking about when that moment will come.
“My focus right now is just to play and do my job in Charlotte because that's something I can control,” Moncada said through an interpreter. “They're going to make that call whenever they think it's the right time. For me, it's just about doing my job in Charlotte.”
Moncada was named the White Sox minor league player of the month for April, and posted some other encouraging numbers with Charlotte, like his 11.3 percent walk rate and six stolen bases in eight attempts. The White Sox like the strides he’s made defensively, too.
“I feel ready and I'm just waiting for that call,” Moncada said. “I’ve been doing my job here.”
Moncada struggled during a September call-up with the Red Sox last September, striking out 12 times and reaching base only five times in 20 plate appearances. He made the jump from Double-A to the majors then; whenever Moncada does reach 35th and Shields he won’t have skipped the last rung in the minor league ladder.
"We’re real pleased with where he’s at," general manager Rick Hahn said. "The fact is he does remain a 22-year-old that coming into the year had fewer than 200 plate appearances above A ball. His development is by no means complete at the minor league level but he certainly is making a great deal of progress and we’re thrilled with where he’s at."