Results tagged ‘ Spring Training ’
Monday, February 17, 2014
The Sox pitching coach was the center of attention today. Among his comments? Erik Johnson is “firmly” penciled into the starting rotation.
Flowers and Phegley: A Friendly Rivalry
Happy Presidents Day
Just for fun, we looked up all the former White Sox who shared last names with U.S. Presidents. I posted last year and now it just might be a Presidents Day tradition. The one addition this year is Erik Johnson.
Bobby Adams 3B 1955
Doug Adams C 1969
Herb Adams OF 1948-1950
Jeff Carter P 1991
Gene Ford P 1938
Jimmy Grant 3B 1942-1943
Frankie Hayes C 1946
Jackie Hayes 2B 1932-1940
Bo Jackson DH 1991-1993
Charlie Jackson PH 1915
Darrin Jackson LF 1994, 1999
Edwin Jackson P 2010-2011
Joe Jackson OF 1915-1920
Mike Jackson P 2004
Ron Jackson 1B 1954-1959
Jesse Jefferson P 1975-1976
Bart Johnson P 1969-1977
Charles Johnson C 2000
Connie Johnson P 1953-1956
Dan Johnson 1B 2012
Dane Johnson P 1994
Darrell Johnson C 1952
Deron Johnson DH 1975
Don Johnson P 1954
Erik Johnson P 2013
Ernie Johnson SS 1912, 1921-1923
Johnny Johnson P 1945
Lamar Johnson 1B 1974-1981
Lance Johnson OF 1988-1995
Larry Johnson C 1978
Mark Johnson C 1998-2002
Randy Johnson DH 1980
Stan Johnson OF 1960
Bob Kennedy OF 1939-1948
Vern Kennedy P 1934-1937
Larry Monroe P 1976
Billy Pierce P 1949-1961
Leo Taylor PR 1923
Wiley Taylor P 1912
Claudell Washington OF 1978-1980
George Washington OF 1935-1936
Bill Wilson OF 1950-1954
Craig Wilson 3B 1998-2000
George Wilson OF 1952
Jim Wilson P 1956-1958
Red Wilson C 1951-1954
Roy Wilson P 1928
Quote of the Day
Felipe Paulino, who is competing for a starting spot after shoulder and elbow injuries:
“I’m stronger, (my injuries) are in the past. I’m trying to do everything I can. I’m healthy and ready to compete and just enjoy the game.”
Sox Note of Note
Former White Sox infielder Jerry Royster is at Camelback Ranch as a baseball consultant on a three-day Nike commercial shoot in the Camelback Ranch-Glendale stadium. Royster, a 16-year major leaguer, played for the Sox in 1987.
Photo of the Day
The brain trust deep in thought.
Sunday, February 16, 2014
A Silver Lining
Chris Sale, talking about what he learned from last season, via Colleen Kane’s story in today’s Trib:
“Any time you go through something like that or something negative you always try to bring some kind of positive from it,” Sale said. “Last year made me a better pitcher, a better teammate and a better person because anyone can start throwing stuff and swearing at people and pointing fingers, but that really made me kind of grow up in a sense of knowing that these guys are giving everything they have for me and it’s just not working out.
“It’s not any single person’s fault. It’s not going to do me any good to grab someone and shake ‘em, probably because they’re bigger than me too. But you have to work together, and last year made us work together and really be closer in terms of off the field and in the clubhouse.”
Robin on Derek Jeter
Quote of the Day
“Have you been there all night?”
Head Trainer Herm Schneider to Sox relief pitcher Nate Jones who was receiving treatment for his strained glute early this morning after being hooked up to the exact same machine all afternoon yesterday.
Sox Notes of Note
Coop: Reliever Matt Lindstrom was impressive in his bullpen session today and newcomer Felipe Paulino is throwing without any restrictions and will throw in the bullpen tomorrow…More Coop: No clear cut candidate for the closer role at this point.
Photo of the Day
Newly acquired third baseman Matt Davidson meets with the media. Among other things, he said he’s working with hitting coach Todd Steverson to use the whole field.
Saturday, February 15, 2014
A Good Start
For the first time of thousands this spring …
“Chief! (Bullpen catcher Mark Salas) I need some baseballs!”
Physicals moved quickly and we were out on the field way ahead of schedule.
What They’re Saying on Day 1
@CST_soxvan: Reliever Mitchell Boggs, who said his deal is contingent on making 25-man, is confident: ‘My expectations are as high as they’ve ever been.’
@scottmerkin: John Danks told Herm Schneider that he feels like he’s 18 again. Ball coming out of his hand different than last year, per Danks.
@ESPNChiSox: Long shot closer candidate Daniel Webb says he just wants to make the roster. He’ll be happy with whatever role he earns.
@ChuckGarfien: Chris Sale: “I’ve got 8.6 body fat.”
Robin Ventura: “I’ve got some if you want some.”
Skipper Ventura, GM Hahn Quotes of the Day
Robin on the possibility of an 11-man pitching staff: “It’s not always easy to do, but the way we’re structured, we have to go that way every once in a while.”
Rick on Jose Abreu: “He wants to earn that money and show it was a damn good deal for the White Sox.”
Sox Spring Training Broadcast Schedule
The White Sox, Comcast SportsNet, WGN-TV and WSCR-AM 670 The Score have announced the team’s 2014 spring training broadcast schedule.
The White Sox will have 10 Cactus League games televised from Arizona (nine on Comcast SportsNet and one on WGN), and seven additional webcasts of spring training games free on whitesox.com. WSCR-AM, the club’s flagship radio station, will air nine games (including three interactive broadcasts).
Comcast SportsNet’s first spring training broadcast is scheduled for Friday, March 14 at 3:05 p.m. CDT when the White Sox face Cleveland at Camelback Ranch – Glendale (CBR). CSN will air the Sox-Cubs game at CBR on Friday, March 21. Along with airing seven home games, CSN will broadcast games at Colorado (Scottsdale) on March 23 and at Seattle (Peoria) on March 24. WGN will close out the spring broadcast schedule on Thursday, March 27 when the White Sox play the Cubs in Mesa at 2:05 p.m. CDT.
Ken “Hawk” Harrelson and Steve Stone will work all 10 television games in their sixth season together as the White Sox broadcast team. Harrelson is set to begin his 30th season as the television voice of the White Sox, while Stone enters his sixth year in the Sox television booth.
WSCR-AM broadcasts the first of its nine games on Friday, February 28 at 2:05 p.m. CST when the White Sox open Cactus League play vs. the Los Angeles Dodgers in Glendale. WSCR-AM features the on-air tandem of Ed Farmer and Darrin Jackson. Three of the nine game broadcasts (March 2, 8 and 16) feature an “interactive” format, allowing listeners to interact with Farmer, Jackson, and pre and post-game host Chris Rongey during the broadcast.
In addition to television and radio broadcasts, the White Sox will present webcasts of seven spring training games, in their entirety, at whitesox.com. The spring training webcasts begin on February 28 vs. the Dodgers and are available free to all fans with internet access. Russ Langer will serve as the play-by-play announcer for all seven webcasts.
Additional information regarding spring training broadcasts and tickets at CBR can be found at whitesox.com/spring.
Sox Notes of Note
Reliever Nate Jones has a mild to moderate glute strain. He’ll be evaluated in a few days…Bullpen mate Ron Belisario is having visa issues and is not yet in camp.
Photos of the Day
Robin and Rick meet the media.
Friday, February 14, 2014
Former Sox Skipper Passes Away at 71
Jim Fregosi, a six-time All-Star as a player who managed four different major league teams including the White Sox from 1986-88, died early this morning at 71 after suffering multiple strokes. Fregosi, who most recently was a special assistant with the Braves, suffered the strokes while on a Major League Baseball alumni cruise.
We issued the following statement this morning:
“All of Jim’s friends at the White Sox were stunned and saddened at the news of his stroke and death. Jim was your classic baseball lifer, with the experiences and stories to match a career devoted to the game. He will be missed at the ballpark this spring and our thoughts go out to all of his friends and family.”
A Good Omen
Pitchers and catchers don’t officially report until tomorrow, but 25 players are already in camp working out, including Jose Abreu, who was out in the cages hitting early this morning. “He lives in the batting cage,” someone noted.
Photo of the Day
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Sox Make the Grade
With White Sox pitchers and catchers set to report on Saturday, the Sports Illustrated website gives big props to the moves we made over the Winter.
Strikeouts for Sale
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Chris Sale has struck out 417 batters in his 59 career starts. That’s the most for any pitcher in White Sox history in their first 59 career starts for the team. And only two active pitchers had more career K’s in their first 59 career starts than Sale.
Most Strikeouts, first 59 starts for White Sox: Sale (417), Juan Pizarro (354), Javier Vazquez (345), Jake Peavy (333), Gary Peters (320).
Most Strikeouts, first 59 career starts, active pitchers: Yu Darvish (481), Tim Lincecum (421), Sale (417), Stephen Strasberg (399), Yovani Gallardo (373).
Nate Jones Chosen as “White Sox of the Year”
White Sox reliever Nate Jones was honored Monday as “White Sox of the Year” at the 26th Annual Comcast SportsNet Sports Awards presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois benefiting the March of Dimes. Jones was honored for his outstanding work in the community as well as his play on the field.
White Sox, Birmingham Extend Agreement
The Sox and the Birmingham Barons, the club’s Class AA affliate, have agreed on a four-year extension that will run through the 2018 season, ensuring that the partnership will reach 32 consecutive seasons. The Barons won the Southern League championship in 2013.
Dream Comes True for White Sox Amateur City Elite Standout Darius Day
Having overcome early baseball struggles, Simeon’s Darius Day is headed to play for “the college of his dreams”–the University of Arizona.
March 27, 2013
As someone noted today, the last day of spring training is a lot like the last day of finals in college. You are exhausted and a little fuzzy. There’s still one more hurdle to get through and then you are excited about what comes next.
For us here, the last day involves cleaning up, checking out of the condo or hotel room, turning in the rental car at the ballpark, loading your luggage onto the right truck (the one heading to the airport), sneaking in a quick workout and then boxing up the office.
After today’s game, we bus to Sky Harbor Airport and then get to Midway as quickly as we can. I can’t speak for everyone, but what I miss most (other than my wife and kids, of course!) is my car, my TV and my bed. Forty-five days is a long time to be away.
But I would love to bring some of this Phoenix weather with us for Opening Day.
Thursday is an off day for everyone and then the team will bus to Milwaukee for Friday and Saturday’s exhibition games with the Brewers at Miller Park. Sunday, the White Sox will work out at 10:00 a.m. at U.S. Cellular Field. Robin will meet with the media at 9:45 a.m. and our players will be available post workout. Being Easter, I am sure everyone–staff, players and media–will try to make the day as short as possible. The Royals are scheduled to work out later that day at 1:00 p.m. and then all focus will be on Monday’s Opening Day at 3:00 p.m.
Thanks for the Memories
White Sox starters left the game in the bottom of the sixth inning to cheers from the great Sox fans in Glendale. The faithful was rewarded as the Sox tied the game, 4-4, on an Angel Sanchez two-run homer in the eighth inning and won, 5-4, on a bases loaded walk to Steve Tolleson in the bottom of the ninth.
Life is Good
It is certainly going to be a special few days for Chris Sale.
On Friday night, his alma mater, upstart Florida Gulf Coast University, plays Florida in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament with the chance of reaching the Elite Eight on Sunday.
On Saturday, Sale will celebrate his 24th birthday and on Monday he starts for the Sox on Opening Day.
Quote(s) of the Day
Skipper Ventura on his Troops
On Opening Day Being Only Five Days Away:
“I’m excited. I know the guys are excited to get out of here and get going. These games are nice, they’re meaningful, but they don’t count so everyone just uses these to get ready for the season. We’re ready to go.”
On the Difference Between Opening Day This Year and Last Year, his First as Manager:
“They’re all fun. Guys are excited for the season. You don’t really know what’s going to happen, but even as a manager, it’s still exciting. You like seeing the smiles on the faces of not only the players, but the fans.”
On Chris Sale as the Opening Day Starter:
“Oh, he’s definitely excited. Again, part of the joy in the position I’m in now is you get to enjoy it through them, see their excitement and how they go about it.”
On the Starting Rotation:
“I feel confident in it. You have a kid like Chris Sale who is young and talented and backed up by Peavy, Floyd, Quintana and right now, Axelrod. We feel like we have depth and we have guys that come to play. For me, that’s what you ask for.”
On the Bullpen:
“In our division you’re going to have to be able to pitch and you’re not going to get through it with just starters the entire time. We do feel like we have a quality bullpen and a lot of guys who can mix and match with a lot of different scenarios.”
On the Versatility of the Lineup:
“You look at the left/right scenarios that come up and that’s one thing we’re going to have to do is to move guys around and be able to play different positions to get them all in the lineup. It’s a nice problem to have.”
On Adding Jeff Keppinger to the Lineup:
“He can hit, he knows the angles and he’s a very smart hitter.”
On the Upcoming Season:
“It’s about effort all year long. You don’t get caught up looking towards the end because the effort has to be there every day for you to have a chance.”
GM Hahn on the State of the Sox
On Starting the Season:
“We’re real excited, we’re ready to get going. It’s been a a nice camp, albeit a long one, that has some of us chomping at the bit to start playing games that matter. There’s been a lot of positives. We’ve had not only some of our young position players that are going to be in Chicago take a nice step forward in terms of development–guys such as Beckham and Flowers–but we also had some of our young players in the minor leagues step up and have nice Springs. Guys like Jared Mitchell, Simon Castro and Erik Johnson, who could conceivably contribute this year–and if not this year certainly as soon as 2014.”
On the Team’s Versatility:
“That was important to us. We wanted to give Robin the opportunity to play matchups, whether it be based upon the opposing starting pitcher or even who we’re starting in trying to go with an even more defensive-oriented lineup based upon how our starter profiles…The more versatility you can have on that big league roster, the more insulated you are against injury or underperformance, which unfortunately happens over the course of the season. Frankly, from our standpoint, it’s not a finished product yet. It’s the kind of thing that we’re going to continue to look for upgrades over the course of the season…We’re going to be aggressive as we have in the past to go out and address those needs.”
On the Minor League System:
“The public and professional ratings don’t matter quite as much as our opinion. And our opinion of the minor leagues is based upon two things. One, are we providing impact guys for Chicago to help win us a championship? And, last year we saw Sale, Viciedo, Reed and Jones all come up through our system and contribute on what we felt was a very good team. The second part is: Is it providing assets for us that can allow us to go out and acquire players that help augment our roster? Last year we were able to do that with getting Youkilis, Myers and Liriano. From my talks with other clubs, I can assure you that we continue to have guys that other clubs covet. So, the farm system is working well. We think that next wave, although it’s certainly not going to hit on Opening Day in 2013, (has) some impact players near being ready for Chicago.”
On the Sox’s Positive Clubhouse Dynamics
“I think a lot of that credit goes to Robin and his staff. From the first day since they assembled 13 months ago, they’ve been able to keep the focus on winning that night’s game and the preparation, fundamentals, and focus on what needs to be done to make the team better. Any outside distractions have remained exactly that, outside of the clubhouse. It’s a very tightly bound group that fights for each other and is singularly focused on winning ball games. You can’t ask for much more than that.”
Play of the Day
Sanchez, whose second monster home run in as many days tied the game in the eighth inning.
Off Day. On Friday, White Sox vs. Milwaukee at Miller Park (7:05 p.m., CT). Hector Santiago will start for the Sox vs. the Brewers’ Wily Peralta.
Did You Know…
…that Sox minor leaguers Brandon Short, Josh Bell, Marcus Semien and Keenyn Walker combined to go 7-10 with two home runs, five RBI and four runs scored in yesterday’s 11-3 win vs. the Rangers?
Photo of the Day
The victorious Spring finale today in Glendale with Opening Day on the horizon.
Tuesday, March 26, 2013
Avoiding Sale is a Good Idea for Any Opponent
Former White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski, now with the Rangers, stopped in the visitor’s clubhouse this afternoon in Surprise to say hello to former teammates, coaches and staff. Among his first targets were visiting clubhouse manager Gabe Morell, strength coach Dale Torborg and today’s starting pitcher Chris Sale.
When asked by coach Harold Baines why he wasn’t playing against his former team, Pierzynski said “I have to pack. Plus Sale’s pitching, I don’t want to face that in March.”
A.J.’s teammates undoubtedly wish they hadn’t seen Chris today as the Sox’s Opening Day starter allowed just one hit (a solo home run to Geovany Soto) with no walks and five strikeouts in four innings as the Sox defeated Texas, 11-3, on 18 hits. Sale finished the spring with a perfect 4-0 record and a 3.86 ERA.
Two Decades Later…
Twenty years ago on Opening Day at then-New Comiskey Park, Bo Jackson dramatically returned from hip replacement surgery with a homer in his first at-bat against the Yankees in an 11-6 White Sox victory. He then proceeded to be a significant contributor for the Sox’s 1993 division champions and even hit a three-run homer in the 4-2 win over the Mariners in the division-clinching game in Chicago.
Next Monday during Opening Day fesitivities at U.S. Cellular Field, Bo will have the honor of throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before the Sox and Royals get down to business. Game time is 3:10 p.m., CT.
The Ponce family–Chicago Tonight‘s Phil and his sons Anthony (NBC Chicago) and Dan (WGN-TV and the popular vocal group Straight No Chaser)–will sing the national anthem.
Opening Day Seats No Longer Available
Seats for next Monday’s opener have been sold out. A very limited number of standing-room only tickets to the game are available at the U.S. Cellular Field Ticket Office. Tickets do remain available for the remainder of the homestand (vs. Kansas City and Seattle, April 3-7).
Rios Not Concerned
Alex Rios said tests revealed no structural back issues, just muscular. He said he still feels a little pinch, but is much better today and he anticipates playing in the Milwaukee exhibition games Friday and Saturday and being ready for Opening Day. He stressed several times that there is nothing to worry about and that he’s not concerned.
The White Sox made the following moves prior to today’s game against the Rangers:
* Placed LHP John Danks on the 15-day disabled list (retro to March 22) to continue his recovery from left shoulder surgery.
* Placed LHP Leyson Septimo on the 15-day disabled list (retro to March 22) with a left shoulder strain.
* Reassigned LHP David Purcey to minor-league camp.
Thoughtful pitcher Gavin Floyd certainly brightened the mood in the coaches’ locker room this morning when he popped in the door with a box of a dozen donuts.
No one was hurt in the ensuing melee, and one unnamed bench coach happily ate two Boston Crème-filled donuts.
“Boy, that’s an easy group to buy for,” I said to Gavin as we walked out of the room.
“He’s a Sports Star, But He’s Also Your Friend”
A look at the remarkable impact being made by Sox pitcher Dylan Axelrod:
Quote of the Day
Rick Hahn on Jeff Keppinger’s ability to fall out of bed and hit: “As he puts it, his favorite position is the batter’s box.”
Play(s) of the Day
Right fielder Brandon Short had to corral a blown-away umbrella in the third inning of today’s game. The umbrella flew down onto the field from the main concourse, interrupting play before Short grabbed the invader to loud cheers from the crowd. The very next inning, Short got more applause from the Sox fans in the stands when he hit a three-run homer to give the Sox a lead they never relinquished–and in the ninth Angel Sanchez and Short hit back-to-back roundtrippers. Dayan Viciedo hit a three-run shot of his own in the Sox’s five-run sixth.
White Sox vs. Indians at Camelback Ranch-Glendale in the Sox’s final Cactus League game of the Spring (2:05 p.m., Chicago time). Matt Zaleski will start for the Sox, Carlos Carrasco for the Tribe.
Did You Know…
…that ESPN’s Sport Science named Jackson, who was a Heisman Trophy winner at Auburn and an All-Pro with the NFL’s Los Angeles Raiders in addition being an MLB All-Star, the Greatest Athlete of All Time.
Photo of the Day
Brandon Short: What a Day!
Out of the corner of my eye, I sense someone in a Dodgers uniform walking into the dugout.
“Is Robin here yet?’ he asks.
I turn an immediately recognize that it is Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax. Behind him, I see lots of autograph seekers and hear people calling his name.
“Not yet,” I say. “He’ll be here is a couple minutes.”
Mr. Koufax started to talk. Fine by me. (editor’s note: I did meet Mr. Koufax one spring in Vero Beach, Florida, when I was a kid. My dad and I were walking down a sidewalk in Dodgertown when here came Mr. Koufax walking toward us. He was very pleasant but, of course, he doesn’t remember me.)
So of course I start small talk with Sandy Koufax. I ask him how he’s doing (fine), where he’s staying down here (West Valley), where he lives (up and down the East Coast depending on the weather) and why in the world are “you guys” throwing Kershaw and Greinke at us this early in the spring … since there is a long way to go.
He laughed a little and then explained that he liked to go nine innings once or twice each spring so that he had dealt with the soreness issue before the season had even begun. “I didn’t care about the first start,” he said. “I was concerned with how I’d feel going into the second. Back then, we didn’t have playoffs.”
You either won the pennant or you went home, he explained, so every start mattered.
After about 10 minutes, Robin showed up to a big smile and hug from Koufax.
“Back when I was with the Dodgers,” RV said, “we used to sneak off and play basketball with Sandy.”
(Sandy, by the way, went to the Universithy of Cincinnati on a hoops scholarship).
Basketball? With Sandy Koufax? That would have made him about 65 back then (Sandy, not Robin).
“Guy could play.”
Another true story … maybe
Former White Sox pitcher Grady Hall was in camp on Saturday to say hello and he re-connected with former teammate Mark Parent.
“We played together in the Dominican one winter,” Hall said of the Sox bench coach. “His nickname down there was ‘Grande Lama.’”
“Grande Lama,” I laughed, almost choking on my lunch.
“Nothing to do with the Dali Lama,” Hall corrected. “It had to do with a sponsor and of course, he’s the Grande Lama.”
Quote of the Day
Coop on pitching: “Anytime you shut someone out, you’ve done something,” he said referring to yesterday’s win. “Every game no matter spring training or regular season, there are always going to be 10 balls hit hard. It’s what happens to those 10.”
Play of the Day
Dunn’s first homer of the spring.