BREAKING NEWS: White Sox Sign a Top International Prospect and Welcome Jim Thome Back into the Fold

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Today’s News

Tonight’s Game

White Sox vs. Orioles at U.S. Cellular Field (7:10 p.m., CT, WCIU) in the first of a three-game series. Starters: LHP John Danks (1-5, 4.68) for the Sox, RHP Jason Hammel (7-4, 5.09) for the Orioles.

Sox Starting Lineup: De Aza, CF; Ramirez, SS; Rios, RF; Dunn, 1B; Konerko, DH; Gillaspie, 3B; Viciedo, LF; Beckham, 2B; Flowers, C.

Viva Zapata!

The White Sox announced today the signing of free agent Micker Adolfo Zapata, a 16-year-old outfielder from San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic.

Zapata, who stands 6-foot-3 and weighs 225 pounds, will receive a $1.6 million signing bonus, which is the largest ever by the Sox for an international prospect. Zapata bats and throws right-handed and is considered the No. 2 international prospect by MLB.com.

Sox General Manager Rick Hahn said, “Micker is a terrific young man who is tremendously talented. As we’ve gotten to know (him) and his family, we’ve been even more and more impressed. We cannot say enough about his baseball potential and his future with the White Sox.” Hahn added that Marco Paddy, White Sox Special Assistant to the General Manager–International Operations, had a great deal to do with scouting and signing Zapata.

“…Zapata has impressed everyone over the last year with his makeup and approach to the game,” Paddy explained. “His raw tools and natural strength immediately grab your attention and his power displays can be jaw-dropping.” Take a look.

http://wapc.mlb.com/play?content_id=28524577

Thome Joins Sox as Special Assistant

Jim Thome is back on the South Side. The 22-year major league vet who finished his career in seventh place on the all-time home run list with 612, has been named a special assistant to GM Rick Hahn. He becomes the 11th former White Sox player currently serving as a coach or manager in the organization.

Thome will consult with Hahn and assistant general manager Buddy Bell and will work with Sox major league staff and players and minor league affiliates through the summer.

Known all during his career as the consummate teammate, Thome played for the Sox from 2006-09. He appeared in 529 games over four seasons with the Sox, batting .265 (469-1,770) with 134 home runs and 369 RBI. He hit his 500th career home run on September 16, 2007 vs. the Angels and his game-winning solo homer off Nick Blackburn on September 30, 2008 gave the White Sox a 1-0 victory over Minnesota in a one-game playoff at U.S. Cellular Field.

Thome, a five-time All-Star, hit 40 or more home runs in a season six times and drove in 100-plus runs on nine occasions. His 17 postseason home runs are the seventh-highest total in major-league history. He also played for the Indians, Phillies, Dodgers, Twins and Orioles.

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Big Doings at the Ol’ Ballpark

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Meet the Prize Fighters at the #SoxSocial Lounge

Please stop by the #SoxSocial Lounge after the start of tonight’s game and meet the prize fighters who will be part of the Friday, August 16 “Friday Night Fights” as boxing returns to Chicago at U.S Cellular Field.

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Play(s) of the Day

With the White Sox enjoying an off-day on Monday, the top two White Sox farm clubs celebrated victories.

Behind former Sox pitchers Zach Stewart (7.0 IP), Deunte Heath (1.0) and Donnie Veal (1.0), the Class AAA Charlotte Knights defeated Buffalo, 3-0.

The Class AA Birmingham Barons came away with a 4-1 win over Jackson on catcher Mike Blanke’s three-run, ninth-inning triple with the score knotted up at 1-1.

Quote of the Day

Third baseman Brent Morel, who was recalled briefly from Charlotte last week, is looking at the big picture as he works hard to overcome back issues and get back to the major leagues on a permanent basis. He tweeted:

@Bmorel_22: Blessed and encouraged to see the hard work pay off to get healthy and back to the big leagues.. Can’t wait to get back up there!

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs Orioles at U.S. Cellular Field (6:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starters: LHP Hector Santiago (3-5, 3.59) for the Sox, RHP Miguel Gonzalez (6-3, 3.77) for Baltimore.

Did You Know

…that the Sox’s first and second draft choices in the June draft are already making an impact? No. 1 pick SS Tim Anderson is hitting .315 with two doubles, two triples, five stolen bases and seven runs scored in 12 games with Class A Kannapolis…RHP Tyler Danish, the No. 2 choice, owns a 1.80 ERA in three relief appearances with Advanced Rookie Bristol.

Photo of the Day

Former White Sox PR head Paul Jensen was on the road to Gettysburg, PA last week to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War battle there and President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. At one point Jensen drove through St. Thomas Township, PA, home of the late White Sox Hall of Famer Nellie Fox. And this is what Paul saw.

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