Sox appear ready to promote first-rounder Chris Sale

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Sox appear ready to promote first-rounder Chris Sale

Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010
Updated: 12:06 AM

By Brett Ballantini & Jeremy Lynn
CSNChicago.com

DETROIT Theres no word on whether he packs a bat called Wonderboy or will stop on the train ride way up to Detroit to strike out the Whammer, but Chris Sales remarkable ascendance up Chicagos organizational chart does look to be finally grinding to a halt on Wednesday, when the White Sox call the lefty up from Triple-A Charlotte.

While the move hasnt been officially announced, with lefthander Erick Threets on the DL the White Sox are limited to only southpaw Matt Thornton in the pen. Randy Williams, another lefty available to the White Sox and one who pitched for the team earlier in the season, threw out of the bullpen for Charlotte on Tuesday, likely eliminating him from callup contention.

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who famously claims to be concerned only with the 25 men on his current, major-league roster, was fully ignorant of any pending Sale tomorrow.

Who? The skinny kid? asked the manager postgame. I just manage. They give him to me, and I just manage him.

General Manager Ken Williams made no comment on Tuesday, but had projected Sale as a possible late-season call-up, likening his potential impact to that of Bobby Jenks in 2005 and Mark Buehrle in 2000. In both of those seasons the pitchers were significant stretch-run rookies who would go on to have long careers in Chicago.

While Guillen and Williams are tight-lipped about Sale's immediate future, his father Allen made told news-press.com that his son "will be in Detroit (Wednesday)."

Sale is projected to be a future member of the starting rotationand not coincidentally is said to sport a changeup that compares well to Mark Buehrles killer slowballbut has seen his innings monitored in his first pro season.

Tuesday nights starter, Carlos Torres, was sent down after his six-inning, five-run effort vs. the Detroit Tigers, leaving a roster spot open for Wednesday.

Guillen speculated that Williams would need to talk to Charlotte pitching coach Richard Dotson before making a decision on bringing Sale up. Upon Sales signing in June, Williams sent the rookie specifically to Single-A Winston-Salem so he could be tutored by White Sox all-time saves leader Bobby Thigpen, who is the Dashs pitching coach.

The 6-foot-5-inch, 170-pound lefty has compiled some impressive numbers in his Winston-Salem and Charlotte stints. In 11 total games hes logged a 2.61 ERA, a 1.16 WHIP and 16.5 K9. In Charlotte alone, Sale sports an astronomical 21.3 K9.

Brett Ballantini is CSNChicago.coms White Sox Insider. Follow him @CSNChi_Beatnik on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Sox information.

How Tim Anderson's new glasses could benefit him at the plate

How Tim Anderson's new glasses could benefit him at the plate

Though he only has worn them for one game, Tim Anderson had been preparing to break in his new glasses for several weeks.

White Sox manager Rick Renteria said Tuesday evening that Anderson recently purchased new corrective lenses after he asked for additional testing beyond what teams normally offer. Though he’d recently worn the glasses around the clubhouse and in batting practice, Anderson didn’t break them in until Monday night. The second-year shortstop homered for the first time in nearly a month Monday and finished 2-for-5 with three RBIs in the club’s loss to the New York Yankees.

If the glasses help Anderson’s vision at the plate, the White Sox are all for it. Anderson entered Tuesday’s game hitting .253/.278/.377 with seven home runs and 24 RBIs in 285 plate appearances.

“The ball can travel anywhere from Shields' 69 miles per hour curveball to Chapman's 100 miles per hour fastball,” Renteria said. “It's very important to be able to see the baseball. It's obviously a split-second decision. It's very dangerous to be in there and not be able to see the ball. If that helps him, if that's a part of continuing to move forward, I hope that's part of what helps clear him up.”

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Anderson said after Monday’s game he plans to wear the lenses the rest of the season, though he didn’t think the glasses make a huge difference. Still, the fact he homered after going 96 plate appearances in between round-trippers didn’t escape third baseman Todd Frazier, who made a joke suggesting Anderson downplayed the significance. Anderson said he’s spent several days recently adjusting to the glasses in preparation for the game and wears them at bat and in the field.

“I’ve been using them in BP,” Anderson said. “Trying to get used to them.”

Renteria said players get their vision checked every spring. Anderson’s request for additional screening isn’t out of the ordinary, Renteria said.

“Timmy just told us he wanted to get his eyes checked, so he did,” Renteria said. “Obviously, he's wearing the glasses that he wears now. He's trying to get comfortable with them. He'd had them for at least 2 1/2 weeks, 3 weeks. But he's kind of been hesitant to put them on. I know (Todd Steverson) spoke to him. He's going to use them, feel comfortable with them, start using them in the workouts and BP.”

Last-place White Sox ready to trade, but only if the right offer arises

Last-place White Sox ready to trade, but only if the right offer arises

That the White Sox lost their fourth consecutive game doesn’t change the big picture plans of the franchise, which probably — but not definitely — will involve making at least one trade before the end of July.

Before the White Sox lost, 6-5, to the New York Yankees Monday at Guaranteed Rate Field, general manager Rick Hahn met with the media and delivered the same message he’s had since trading away Chris Sale and Adam Eaton in December. The White Sox are open for business, and would like to make a number of moves to further bolster their farm system, but won’t make a trade if they don’t receive what they view to be a fair return.

“Would I be surprised (if we didn’t make a trade)? No, because I try not to be surprised by the dynamics of this market,” Hahn said. “Would I be mildly disappointed? Sure. We are here to try to improve this club.

“We feel we have certain first and desirable players that would help other clubs and may fit better on their competitive windows then they do on ours right now. And we intend to be active each day in trying to further accomplish what we set out to do a year ago at this time.

“But do we have to do it? No. That would be using an artificial spot on the calendar to force decision-making. That would be the last thing we need to do. We need to take a long term view of what we are trying to accomplish.”

Hahn didn’t name names, but Todd Frazier, Melky Cabrera, David Robertson could be short-term fixes for contending clubs. Jose Quintana, who will start Tuesday against the Yankees, remains the team’s most valuable trade chip despite a 4.69 ERA that sits over run higher than his career average.

Frazier homered Monday and entered the game hitting .262/.351/.524 since Memorial Day. Cabrera similarly has found success after a slow start, slashing a healthy .324/.375/.482 in his previous 34 games before picking up two hits in four at-bats Monday. And Robertson, who’s been linked to the relief-starved Washington Nationals for months, has 41 strikeouts in 27 1/3 innings with 11 saves.

“We want to be able to do as much as we can in our power to get this team to where it needs to be,” Hahn said. “Yes, there’s an element of competitiveness involved in that. There’s an element of patience involved in that. But at the end of the day, we have to — we get paid to be prudent in our decision making. We have to make the right decision.”

In the meantime, the White Sox looked the part of a rebuilding team with the worst record in the American League on Monday. Starter David Holmberg struggled, allowing six runs on five hits and four walks in 5 1/3 innings — but only two of those runs were earned thanks to errors by Holmberg, Frazier and Matt Davidson.

As the Yankees took advantage of those miscues with three runs in both the fourth and sixth innings, Jordan Montgomery retired nine consecutive White Sox batters and went on to cruise with eight strikeouts over seven innings. The White Sox – as they’ve done quite a bit this year – still showed fight late, battling back in the ninth inning.

Tim Anderson ripped a three-run home run in the ninth inning off Yankees left-hander Chasen Shreve to bring the White Sox within two. Joe Girardi quickly turned to Aroldis Chapman, who allowed a run when Jose Abreu doubled home Melky Cabrera. But the tying run was stranded on second when Avisail Garcia grounded out and Frazier flew out to end the game.