White Sox

On The Farm: Another Day, Another Big Game For Clevenger

On The Farm: Another Day, Another Big Game For Clevenger

Sunday, Aug. 22, 2010
Posted: 7:30 p.m.
By Kevin Czerwinski
CSNChicago.com
CUBSTennessee AA
Steve Clevenger continued his one-man assault against Mississippi on Sunday, leading Tennessee to an 11-2 victory at Smokies Park.

Clevenger had a homer and four RBIs after hitting a homer and driving in five on Saturday. He has nine hits in his last nine at-bats against the Braves. Marwin Gonzalez added four hits and a pair of RBIs while Matt Spencer had a homer and two runs batted in.

Rafael Dolis 4-3 allowed a run in five innings while striking out five.

The Smokies lost an arm and added an arm as well on Sunday, bidding adieu to RHP Chris Carpenter, who heads to Triple-A Iowa, while welcoming fellow RHP Trey McNutt from Class-A Daytona. Carpenter, a third-round pick in 2008, leaves with an 8-6 record and a 3.16 ERA. He fanned 100 batters.

McNutt, meanwhile, represents yet another mound success story for the Cubs this season. Hes 10-0 with a 1.97 ERA while splitting time between Peoria of the Midwest League and Daytona. Hes fanned 119 in just over 100 innings and will join Chris Archer, whom he replaced at Daytona when Archer was promoted to Tennessee in June, as the Smokies zero in on a Southern League title.

Chicago RHP Esmailin Caridad also joined the Smokies as he works his way back from an elbow strain.
Iowa AAA
Jay Jacksons streaky season continued Sunday afternoon as Iowa upended Nashville, 3-2, at Principal Park. The I-Cubs, who own the best record in the Pacific Coast League, are a season-high 20 games over .500.

Jackson 10-8 snapped a two-start losing streak after throwing five solid innings. Hes been winning in long streaks this year and losing in much shorter ones thanks in part to efforts like Sundays. He allowed only two runs on six hits and struck out six before a trio of relievers kept the Sounds from making any noise. Jeff Stevens pitched a scoreless ninth to earn his fifth save.

The Cubs scored twice in the fifth inning, equaling the two runs Nashville put up in the top of the frame, to take a 3-2 lead. Matt Camp tied the score with an RBI double before the winning run scored on a Ty Wright double play.

In other action, Daytona and Brevard County were postponed and will play a doubleheader on Monday beginning at 5:05 at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Peoria dropped a 4-2 decision at Clinton's Alliant Energy Field. Maolin De Leon allowed a trio of fourth-inning runs and suffered the loss. Hak-Ju Lee, Jae-Hoon Ha and Justin Bour each had a pair of hits. The loss pushed the Chiefs 2.5 games out of a wild-card spot in the Midwest League playoff picture. Vancouver edged Boise, 4-3. Peirre LaPage had a pair of hits and an RBI, extending his hitting streak to five games.
WHITE SOXWinston-Salem A
The Dash held off a furious late charge by Potomac and earned a 9-8 victory at Pfitzner Stadium.

Potomac scored four times in the eighth and once more in the ninth before the game ended on a play at the plate. Jose Lozada was attempting to score on a pitch that got by catcher Jason Bour. He retrieved the ball and fired to pitcher Tyson Corley, who applied the tag for the final out, giving the hurler his eighth save.

Terry Doyle 6-8 gave up a run in five innings to pick up his first victory since July 8. He had been 0-5 in seven starts since. Seth Loman had three hits, including a homer, and two RBIs for the Dash.
Kannapolis A
The Intimidators swept a doubleheader at Greensboro Sunday afternoon and once again they benefited from some strong starting pitching. Andre Rienzo pitched a complete game in the opener as Kannapolis earned a 5-0 victory.

It was Rienzos fourth consecutive victory and seventh in nine starts. He allowed only three hits and struck out nine in the seven-inning affair, lowering his ERA to a season-low 3.90. He has a 1.41 ERA in his last eight starts, a stretch of 51 innings.

Ian Gac had three hits, including one of Kannapoliss three home runs. Nick Ciolli had a homer and two RBIs while Trayce Thompson had two hits, including a solo homer.

The bats took over in the nightcap, a 9-5 victory. Thompson had another homer and drove in three while had a hit and picked up two more RBIs. Matt Hopps 2-10 picked up his first victory since May 27.
Birmingham AA
Johnnie Lowe continued his hot streak for the Barons as they defeated visiting Huntsville, 5-1, Sunday evening.

Lowe 6-4 won for the second time in three starts after allowing a run on two hits in six innings. He has a 2.20 ERA in his last three starts. Deunte Heath preserved the victory with three shutout innings. Both pitchers fanned six. Dale Mollenhauer had three RBis for the Barons.
Great Falls Rookie
The Voyagers exploded for eight first-inning runs and then held on for a 12-10 victory at Ogden.

Andy Wilkins and Mike Early each had two hits and two RBIs while Mike Blanke added a pair of hits to extend his hitting streak to eight games. Despite allowing three runs in 1 13 innings, Rene Garcia picked up his first win of the season.

In other action, Clint Sammons solo homer sparked a two-run 10th inning and gave Gwinnett a 10-8 victory over Charlotte at Knights Stadium. The loss snapped Charlottes winning streak at three games. Greg Aquino took the loss. Dayan Viciedo had three hits, including a pair of homers, and three RBIs. Stefan Gartrell had two hits, including a homer, and three RBIs. ... Johnson City downed Bristol, 3-1, in Appalachian League play. The Sox managed only four hits. Kevin Rath took the loss, allowing all three runs in two innings. Matt Heidenreich started and tossed six shutout innings. he's got a 0.67 ERA in his last four starts.

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

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Discussing 2020 White Sox expectations

kopech_pod-831.jpg
USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Discussing 2020 White Sox expectations

SportsTalk Live is on location at McCormick Place to preview SoxFest 2020. Chuck Garfien and David Haugh join David Kaplan on the panel.

0:00 - White Sox manager Rick Renteria joins the guys to talk about the team's big offseason and the expectations for the 2020 season. He also talks about how the team with handle Michael Kopech (4:00) and what Dallas Keuchel brings to the rotation. (6:00) Plus, he explains how guys who turned the corner in 2019 like Lucas Giolito and Yoan Moncada can stay hot in 2020. (15:00)

17:00 - Steve Stone joins the guys to explain how the White Sox rebuild is going according to plan despite not landing one of the top free agents this winter. Plus, he updates his Twitter follower battle with Jason Benetti (23:00) and talks about how he would handle Michael Kopech's return. (25:30)

Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below:

White Sox reward for winning the offseason: They get to talk playoffs ... or bust

White Sox reward for winning the offseason: They get to talk playoffs ... or bust

The White Sox know there is no trophy for winning the offseason.

Make no mistake, they did win the offseason, Rick Hahn’s front office adding enough veteran cache to vault the 89-loss South Siders from just another rebuilding team with a bright future to a team whose future is pulling into the station.

But there was no self-congratulating at Hahn’s pre-SoxFest press conference Thursday.

“Quite candidly, we haven't accomplished anything yet, we haven't won yet,” he said. “This whole process was about winning championships, was about finishing with a parade at the end of October down Michigan Avenue. Until that happens, I don't think any of us are really in a position to feel satisfied or feel like we've accomplished anything.

“We've had a nice winter. We've had, frankly, in our opinion, a real nice three years since we started (the rebuild) with the Chris Sale trade. We think very bright days are ahead of us, and we look forward to enjoying them. But in terms of feeling like we've accomplished something or feeling satisfied, ask me after the parade.”

Give me a second while I email that last bit over to our marketing department. They might be able to conjure up a few things with “ask me after the parade.”

But in all seriousness, Hahn is right. There is no trophy for winning the offseason. The act of signing free agents does not balance out all the losing over the last three seasons. Only winning can do that.

There has been, however, a reward for winning the offseason. Rick Renteria — and presumably all his players this weekend during SoxFest — get to talk about playoff expectations. Real ones.

“I would be disappointed if we don’t make the postseason,” Renteria said during his own session Thursday. “We want to break through. We want this to be an impactful season.”

As recently as a year ago, no matter how bright the future appeared to be, that comment would have raised eyebrows. It would not have been taken seriously. Now? It is the expectation.

Renteria has not been shy about the rebuilding White Sox turning the corner in 2020. He spent the last few weeks of the 2019 campaign making similar postseason proclamations. But now Hahn has backed his manager up with all this winter’s acquisitions.

The White Sox place in the standings by the end of September still figures to have a lot more to do with Yoan Moncada and Lucas Giolito and Eloy Jimenez and Tim Anderson and Luis Robert than any of the individual newcomers, even players as talented and accomplished as Yasmani Grandal and Dallas Keuchel. The core is that important. But the outsiders brought in this offseason have embodied the turning tide — and given Renteria the chance to talk seriously about these kinds of big expectations for the first time in his tenure as the South Side skipper.

“I think, man for man,” he said, “now we at least have a little bit more ammunition to be able to go out and compete hopefully on a consistent basis and put those victories on the board.

“I’m not afraid of talking about high expectations and winning. … If we do our job and we go about preparing and hopefully the actions and performances come to fruition, we should be on top of the victory column in terms of wins and losses. And there’s nothing beyond my thought that doesn’t say that I expect us to compete and be in conversation for postseason play.”

Hahn isn’t quite as willing to declare the 2020 season “playoffs or bust” because he’s still got his eye on the long term, the same place it’s been throughout this rebuilding process. That next parade down Michigan Avenue is supposed to be merely the first.

And so while the White Sox can reap the rewards of Hahn’s offseason work in the form of preseason talk, he’ll bask in nothing more than setting up his team for that long-term postseason success.

“I think the expectations are understandably high, at least when you talk to Ricky or the coaches or any of the players or anyone in uniform. Their expectation is that this team is in a position to win in the 2020 season, which is exactly where all of us in the front office would want them to be,” he said. “That said, whether you're talking Jerry (Reinsdorf) or Kenny (Williams) or myself, the entire purpose of this rebuild was to put ourselves in a multi-year position to win multiple championships.

“So the progress that we make in any given offseason has to be viewed not just about what's going to happen in that upcoming season, but what position that puts us in toward accomplishing that long-term goal. We want to make sure that we are well positioned, once that window opens, to win as many championships as possible.

“When that window opens, we're going to find out together. I certainly think the players in uniform think it's going to happen come Opening Day of this year. Whether we're blessed with good health and continued progress from our young players, we're going to find out together.

“But we look at it, in the front office, from a multi-year perspective. The guys in uniform are going to do everything in their power to make it about now, which you've got to appreciate.”

That’s going to be the theme of this weekend, as White Sox fans descend on SoxFest with more excitement than they have in years. This is a White Sox team expected to reach October, and that hasn’t exactly been common, as evidenced by the franchise’s more than decade-long postseason drought.

Hahn can talk about putting the team in good position for 2021 and 2022 and 2023 and beyond all he wants. The fans are finally — and with good reason — thinking playoffs or bust for the upcoming season.

And the manager agrees.

“I see our club, and I want to go into this season thinking I don't want to miss an opportunity,” Renteria said. “That's my goal right now, not to miss this opportunity. Expectations bread opportunities. I'm not afraid of expectations because it breads opportunity. I want to attain and complete those tasks that I think our club is going to have a chance to be able to do.

“I'm not afraid to say it.”

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