2014 Chicago White Sox Top 10 Prospects


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The White Sox, who contended for most of the 2012 season, opened 2013 expecting to contend again, with a payroll approaching $120 million. Instead, Chicago began a rebuilding project under first-year general manager Rick Hahn, Kenny Williams’ longtime lieutenant who ascended to the GM role when Williams was promoted to team president.
Hahn inherited an offense that collapsed despite a veteran presence. The White Sox ranked last in the American League in runs in 2013, en route to their worst record (63-99) since 1970.

TOP 10 PROSPECTS
1. Jose Abreu, 1b
2. Erik Johnson, rhp
3. Tim Anderson, ss
4. Matt Davidson, 3b
5. Marcus Semien, 2b/3b
6. Micah Johnson, 2b
7. Courtney Hawkins, of
8. Trayce Thompson, of
9. Chris Beck, rhp
10. Jacob May, of
BEST TOOLS
Best Hitter for Average Micah Johnson
Best Power Hitter Jose Abreu
Best Strike-Zone Discipline Marcus Semien
Fastest Baserunner Micah Johnson
Best Athlete Trayce Thompson
Best Fastball Daniel Webb
Best Curveball Scott Snodgress
Best Slider Erik Johnson
Best Changeup Chris Beck
Best Control Erik Johnson
Best Defensive Catcher Miguel Gonzalez
Best Defensive Infielder Cleuluis Rondon
Best Infield Arm Cleuluis Rondon
Best Defensive Outfielder Trayce Thompson
Best Outfield Arm Keenyn Walker
TOP 15 PLAYERS 25 AND UNDER
No Player, Pos (Age) Peak Level
1. Chris Sale, lhp (25) Majors
2. Avisail Garcia, of (22) Majors
3. Jose Quintana, lhp (25) Majors
4. Erik Johnson, rhp (24) Majors
5. Dayan Viciedo, of (25) Majors
6. Tim Anderson, ss (20) Low Class A
7. Matt Davidson, 3b (23) Majors
8. Andre Rienzo, rhp (25) Majors
9. Marcus Semien, ss/2b/3b (23) Majors
10. Micah Johnson, 2b (23) Double-A
11. Adam Eaton, of (25) Majors
12. Courtney Hawkins, of (20) High Class A
13. Trayce Thompson, of (23) Double-A
14. Chris Beck, rhp (23) Double-A
15. Jacob May, of (22) Low Class A
TOP PROSPECTS OF THE DECADE
Year Player, Pos. 2013 Org.
2004 Jeremy Reed, of Out of baseball
2005 Brian Anderson, of Out of baseball
2006 Bobby Jenks, rhp Out of baseball
2007 Ryan Sweeney, of Cubs
2008 Aaron Poreda, lhp Out of baseball
2009 Gordon Beckham, ss White Sox
2010 Jared Mitchell, of White Sox
2011 Chris Sale, lhp White Sox
2012 Addison Reed, rhp White Sox
2013 Courtney Hawkins, of White Sox
TOP DRAFT PICKS OF THE DECADE
Year Player, Pos. 2013 Org.
2004 Josh Fields, 3b Phillies
2005 Lance Broadway, rhp Out of baseball
2006 Kyle McCulloch, rhp Out of baseball
2007 Aaron Poreda, lhp Out of baseball
2008 Gordon Beckham, ss White Sox
2009 Jared Mitchell, of White Sox
2010 Chris Sale, lhp White Sox
2011 Keenyn Walker, of (1st round supp.) White Sox
2012 Courtney Hawkins, of White Sox
2013 Tim Anderson, ss White Sox
LARGEST BONUSES IN CLUB HISTORY
Jose Abreu, 2013 $10,000,000
Joe Borchard, 2000 $5,300,000
Dayan Vicideo, 2008 $4,000,000
Gordon Beckham, 2008 $2,600,000
Courtney Hawkins, 2012 $2,475,000
White Sox Team Page
Last Year’s White Sox Top 10 Prospects
2013 Draft: White Sox
2013 Draft Report Cards: Chicago White SoxPremium
Complete Index of Top 10 Prospects

With the team out of contention, Hahn started selling some of those veterans, with righthander Jake Peavy and outfielder Alex Rios as his chief bargaining chips. He turned two trades with the Red Sox, sending lefty Matt Thornton and Peavy to Boston in separate deals, and sent Rios to the Rangers for speedy utilityman Leury Garcia.
3ds_whitesox85
The Peavy trade, a three-team transaction involving the Tigers, netted an impressive haul led by outfielder Avisail Garcia.

The process also brought several White Sox farmhands to Chicago. Catcher Josh Phegley, fully healthy for the first time since being a supplemental first-round pick in 2009, dominated Triple-A before struggling for a half-season in the majors. Righty Andre Rienzo, who started for Brazil in the World Baseball Classic in March, finished a long season as the first Brazilian pitcher to reach the majors.

Former University of California teammates Marcus Semien, a second baseman, and Erik Johnson, a righthander, sped from Double-A Birmingham to the South Side.

The White Sox kept adding talent in two December trades with the Diamondbacks, adding two potential starters to the lineup for two pitchers. Lefty Hector Santiago was part of the package Chicago used to get center fielder Adam Eaton from Arizona, while they got a potential new third baseman in Matt Davidson in exchange for closer Addison Reed.

More prospects are behind them. For the first time since at least 2000, when the White Sox had the game’s No. 2 farm system, the organization has prospect depth. Birmingham, celebrating a new downtown ballpark, won the Southern League title behind playoff MVP Micah Johnson, who led the minors with 84 stolen bases and ranked sixth with 167 hits. The White Sox also liked what they saw in 2013 first-rounder Tim Anderson, who jumped to low Class A from a Mississippi junior college.

Chicago doesn’t intend to be rebuilding for long, as it spent $68 million on its top prospect, Cuban first baseman Jose Abreu. The plan is for him to replace franchise icon Paul Konerko, who will be back for at least one more season of DH, first base and mentoring duty. With pitching coach Don Cooper still in the majors, and with organization veterans Curt Hasler as roving pitching instructor and Kirk Champion as field coordinator, the White Sox are confident in their ability to develop pitching to go with Abreu and potential igniters Anderson and Johnson.

A major reason for the improved talent and depth in the White Sox system is the club’s decision to spend on scouting and player development, which is directly related to the current labor agreement. Owner Jerry Reinsdorf disdained the old draft rules and restricted his club’s spending on amateurs, and from 2007-11, Chicago spent just $18.3 million on bonuses, barely half the league average. Under the new rules, however, the White Sox have spent every penny of their signing bonus pools, and under assistant to the GM Marco Paddy, they are working hard to be a factor in Latin America.