The Chicago White Sox are impacted as much as anyone as a result of the delayed start to the MLB season and one prospect, particular, might struggle to find his way onto the roster this season.
When the Chicago White Sox thought the regular season would be starting on March 26, it appeared likely Nick Madrigal would start the season at Triple-A Charlotte and, eventually, take the second base reigns at some point in 2020.
However, things have changed drastically since then and now the league is looking at a shortened season.
As detailed by Daniel Marcus of Forbes, the season likely won’t start until at least sometime in June, which could severely limit the number of games played in 2020.
That’s if everything goes right and they are able to somehow start resuming spring training games in late-May, which seems like a little too optimistic of prediction right now, in my opinion.
This could have major ramifications on Madrigal’s ability to make his MLB debut this season as he will have less opportunity to prove he’s ready for the big leagues, especially considering the minor league season is shorter than MLB’s.
Had Madrigal impressed in spring training, this might be a different conversation.
A rough spring training, though, saw the second baseman hit .222/.250/.222 with no homers and three RBI.
After establishing himself as the Chicago White Sox’s fourth-best prospect according to MLB Pipeline, those numbers obviously were concerning and likely made the organization question whether or not he was even ready for the big leagues if they thought he was a better option than Leury Garcia and/or Danny Mendick at the keystone.
Madrigal, 23, played at three levels in 2019 and 71 of the 120 games he appeared in were at Double-A Birmingham or higher.
However, the fact that only 29 of those games came at Triple-A Charlotte probably made the organization lean towards starting him in the minors, to begin with.
His struggles in spring training, whether that is a real barometer of his abilities or not, likely further put his readiness into question.
If things break right and Madrigal hits the ground running once the season eventually starts, he could find himself in the South Side very quickly.
Nonetheless, Nick Madrigal has a much taller order in trying to make his MLB debut for the Chicago White Sox in 2020.