Tagged: Felipe Paulino

White Sox Tie Padres but Fall to Giants in Split Squad Action

Saturday saw the White Sox play in their last two split squad games before the conclusion of spring training.  The White Sox sent one squad to the San Diego Padres camp, while the other squad welcomed the San Francisco Giants to Camelback Ranch.

In the first matchup versus the San Diego Padres, the White Sox managed to put up a little offense for Chris Beck, their rookie right-handed starting pitcher.   Avisail Garcia started the scoring out in the most unfortunate way: by a double play to second base which scored Micah Johnson in the top of the third inning to tie it up 1-1.

Garcia came back up in the top of the eighth inning and hit a single to right field off of Padres’ first baseman Yonder Alonso to score Micah Johnson.  Adam Dunn then added a run with a ground out to first base which scored right fielder Denis Phipps, making it 3-1.  The White Sox offense failed to add any more runs in the ninth.

Second baseman Micah Johnson, third baseman Connor Gillaspie, and left fielder Dayan Viciedo went two for four each in the game.  Adam Dunn also went one for two with a pair of walks.

Starter Chris Beck and the White Sox relievers turned their performances around a little bit as compared to the previous couple games.  Beck turned in a decent five innings in which he gave up five hits and one earned run.  He also gave up a walk while striking out five batters.  The bottom of the first was Beck’s only blemish in the run category. He gave up a line drive double to left field center which scored Alexi Amarista.

Both relievers, Scott Carroll and Dylan Axelrod, followed up Beck’s performance with two hit-one run performances themselves.  Carroll did it while locking down the sixth through eighth innings, while Axelrod was given the blown save in the ninth.

The game ended after the ninth inning as a 3-3 tie.

In the second matchup of the day, the White Sox took on the Tim Hudson and the San Francisco Giants.

The Sox sent Felipe Paulino to the hill in his fifth start of the spring.  Much like his last start, Paulino created his own trouble.  The second inning started off with a base on balls to Brandon Hicks and the inning just got worse from there.  After a double play to Juan Perez, Paulino walked Giants first baseman Mark Minicozzi, and gave up a back to back singles to Ehire Adrianza and Tim Hudson to load the bases.  Center fielder Gregor Blanco then walked giving the Giants their first run of the game.

From the third through fifth innings, Paulino calmed down and went the minimum faced even though he gave up a walk to Juan Perez in the forth.  The sixth inning is where things fell apart.

Buster Posey, who went three for four on the day, led off with a single then stole second base.  After a single that moved Posey to third and a stolen base by Brandon Hicks, Juan Perez hit a three-run homer to left field off of Paulino making it 4-1.  Minicozzi would chase Paulino with his single to center.

As for the Sox, Alejandro DeAza got the offense going with his first home run to right field in the second inning.  The Sox offense finally came to life in the seventh inning with a double by back-up catcher to right field.  Right fielder Blake Tekotte and center fielder Adam Eaton followed the double up with singles of their own scoring Nieto.

After a fielder’s choice ground out by second baseman Marcus Semien moves Blake Tekotte out to third.  First baseman Dan Black would fly out to left scoring Tekotte making it seven to three.

After a pitching change by the Giants, pitch hitter Grant Buckner doubled to left field which scored Semien and Black making it seven to five.

The Giants would add one in the ninth, but the Sox would go out in order in the eighth.  In the ninth the Sox would get a single by Dan Black and had Grant Buckner reach on a catcher’s interference call.  Unfortunately for the Sox neither player would score.  The White Sox would fall by the eight to five score.

The next game was Sunday when the White Sox would travel to take on Tyler Chatwood, Michael Cuddyer and the Colorado Rockies.


Offense and Relievers Carry the Sox Past Rangers

Sunday’s spring training game left a lot to be desired by starter Felipe Paulino, while the offense managed to get nine runs off Texas pitchers.

Newly acquired Paulino only lasted an inning and two thirds in his Sox debut. With 42 pitches thrown, he gave up four runs on eight hits. He also had a balk, walk and a strike out during his time on the mound.

Other pitchers of note from today’s game are: non-roster invitees David Purcey, Deunte Heath, Scott Snodgrass, and Zach Putnam who all held the Rangers hitless and off the scoreboard in relief. Purcey and Heath had three strike outs a piece.

Offensively the Sox managed 13 hits and had nine runs cross home plate. Mike McCade and Carlos Sanchez led the team with two hits each, and Tyler Flowers smashed a two run home run in the sixth inning.

In the ninth inning the Sox were able to get five runs across off Texas relievers. New comer Adrian Nieto and prospect Jared Mitchell were responsible for four runs on singles by both players. Carlos Sanchez had the game winning RBI on a single to left field scoring Leury Garcia from third.

Paul Konerko was held out of the game due to a stomach matter. Robin Ventura gave Adam Dunn the day off after a morning workout to accept a once in a lifetime invitation to the Oscars. Dunn decided that he would accept his opportunity today, and was given tomorrow off so he didn’t have to worry about getting back to the team in a hurry.

Next stop for the rest of the team on the road to the regular season is the Kansas City Royals at Camelback Ranch. The matchup has Jose Quintana going for the Sox versus Jeremy Guthrie of the Royals. First pitch is at 2:05pm CT.

Pitching Storylines Going Into 2014 for the White Sox

In part one of the 2014 story lines articles, I discussed some of the story lines that hover over the offense this season. The pitch staff has some story lines of their own.

The first of these story lines is “What two other pitchers will man the starting rotation along with Chris Sale, Jose Quintana and John Danks?” Baseball Prospectus has listed Erik Johnson as their top prospect in the White Sox organization. He and the newly acquired Felipe Paulino have an edge in getting the fourth and fifth spots in the rotation.  The Sox are looking for Andre Rienzo to show more consistency in his command before they’d give him a shot at the bottom of the rotation.  If he doesn’t show signs of better command, he’ll probably end up starting the year in triple A.

The 24 year-old Johnson had three years of pitching experience between the minors and majors. In his two years of pitching in the minors, he pitched 234.1 innings and had a solid 2.21 ERA (Earned Run Average). He won 18 games and lost 8 of them. He briefly spent time in the rotation last September when he was called up. He pitched in 5 games and went 3-2 in those games. In the games he pitched in, Johnson gave up 16 runs, but only 10 of those were earned. The defense didn’t help the rookie out any. It will be interesting to see what Johnson could do with a better defense.

Felipe Paulino, who was signed from free agency in a 1 year deal, is expected to take one of the two places in the rotation. The former Houston Astros and Kansas City Royals player has a career 4.93 ERA and a 13-32 record. In a year, the Sox are trying to compete and retool; his signing was for him to fill in the last spot of the rotation. On the other hand, it could also give pitching coach Don Cooper a chance to show his stuff, and turn around a player’s fortune.

Another story line that’ll hang about in 2014, “Who’s going to be the next closer?” It is hard to believe the Sox didn’t have a plan for Nate Jones to become the next closer since they traded Addison Reed. They had control of Reed till 2018, so they had to have thoughts that Jones was a solid enough pitcher in his first two seasons to make Reed expendable. He holds a 12-5 record with a 3.31 ERA, which was somewhat inflated last season as mentioned in my previous article on his current injury.

There is some competition for the role with the Sox signing former closer Mitchell Boggs, veteran Matt Lindstrom and others on the roster who could also step into the role when needed. “Will Jones get the role?”, and “Can he hold on to the role the whole season?” could be a couple of questions that will be answered as the season moved on.

There is also some question as to whether John Danks will ever be able to get back to a 200+ inning pitcher, with a sub four ERA. He hasn’t lived up to taking over the ace position for Mark Buehrle. With Chris Sale in firm control of that, he can focus on getting back to pitching as a number two or three. Between ’08 and ’10, Danks carried a sub four ERA with double-digit wins. The Sox are hoping that with another year recovered from the injury he’ll bounce back from his 4-14 season last year, especially since they’re paying him $14.25 million each of the next three years.

In this day and age, where people are so caught up the story lines that run reality television and such.  Each new baseball season can also bring with it story lines that can keep people drawn to it. Now we wait for baseball’s season premiere to see how the stories will unfold!