GLENDALE, Ariz. — You might say that Reynaldo Lopez has responded well to his first dose of adversity with the White Sox.
The pitching prospect delivered his best outing of what has been a very productive spring with six scoreless innings at Camelback Ranch on Monday afternoon. Lopez struck out four and only allowed two hits, though the San Francisco Giants rallied to defeat the White Sox 3-2. The performance lowered Lopez's spring ERA to 3.72.
"The (starts) before were good, but this one was the best because I was able to execute all of the work that I've been putting in during my preparation," Lopez said through an interpreter. "All of the things I've been working on with (pitching coach Don Cooper), trying to move more to the middle of the (rubber), trying to locate my pitches in the right spot — all of those things I was able to execute today, and today was by far my best one."
Acquired along with Lucas Giolito and Dane Dunning in the Adam Eaton deal, Lopez had a rough start his first time out for the White Sox on Feb. 28, allowing five earned runs in 1 1/3 innings at the Cincinnati Reds.
Cooper has since moved Lopez — who despite pitching 44 innings last season for the Washington Nationals had never been to big league camp — over to the middle of the rubber from his former position in the far right corner.
The adjustment has afforded Lopez better command and improved results. Lopez has a 1.50 ERA in 18 innings over his last four starts, striking out 14 batters and walking just four. Though he'd like to make the team, Lopez said he'd have no trouble accepting an assignment to the minors given the promise he's seen in his performance.
"That wouldn't be a disappointment because I've been taking advantage of this opportunity," Lopez said. "This is my first spring training with a big league team, and I've been trying to do my best and learn from all of the guys and the coaches too. If I'm not with the team, I will be working hard in the minors because I know I can make it to the majors."
Peter Bourjos tripled and scored a run in the loss. Adam Engel and Nick Delmonico had the only other hits for the White Sox.
Corey Luebke pitched a scoreless inning for the White Sox to lower his ERA to 1.04. Michael Ynoa pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings in the loss.