The Chicago White Sox made it official on Wednesday: No. 1 prospect Carlos Rodon has been sent down to the minor-league camp.
Feb 28, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; Chicago White Sox pitcher Carlos Rodon poses for a portrait during photo day at Camelback Ranch. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Rodon will most likely start the ’15 season with the Triple-A Charlotte Knights, but that is OK.
Maybe he’ll be like the Chicago Cubs and Kris Bryant and eventually make his way to the White Sox within the end of the month due to a loophole in the collective bargaining agreement.
Either way, having Rodon in the minors isn’t that bad of a thing for now. Rodon will make it to the White Sox starting rotation before the end of the season, we all know that. Rodon, like every young pitcher, can use some fine-tuning before he becomes a major leaguer, though he doesn’t need much.
Actually I like seeing Rodon pitch in Triple-A as a starter, rather than being in the White Sox bullpen to start the year. It will be good for Rodon to get some good work into the minors every fifth day, rather than sit around and not be certain what days he’ll be pitching in the majors.
In a conference call with Southside Showdown and other White Sox bloggers last week, White Sox General Manager Rick Hahn spoke about the progression of Rodon this spring.
“Nothing has changed in terms of our projection as far as where that trajectory ends, and that is as an important part of the major league rotation for years to come,” Hahn said in the conference call. “The path there may be through the bullpen like Chris Sale or like Mark Buehrle.
“It could be he’s in Triple-A in the Charlotte rotation and a situation arises in Chicago or he forces the issue and forces his way directly into the Chicago rotation. I believe if he’s not with us in Chicago, then he’ll start the year in the Charlotte rotation, but that doesn’t mean his debut in Chicago, whenever that arrives, would necessarily be in the rotation. He still has the possibility of going into the bullpen at that point.”
It was basically decided earlier this week Rodon was going to be in the minors to start the season, but he’s had a solid spring training, his first as a pro, as he was the No. 3 overall selection in 2014 MLB First-Year Player Draft.
This spring, Rodon went 2-0 with a 3.06 ERA in six games (five starts). In his 17.2 innings pitched, Rodon held opponents to a .254 average, allowing six earned runs with five walks and 21 strikeouts.
His best start in terms of strikeouts came on March 25 against the Kansas City Royals, where he struck out nine batters.
Rodon will be very intriguing to watch for the Knights when the season begins, but if his short history with the White Sox organization tells us anything, it is he won’t be in the minors for much longer, and we’€™ll see him at the MLB level sooner rather than later.
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