White Sox's Eyes On Amateurs

More officials getting looks at draft prospects





CHICAGO—White Sox general manager Ken Williams didn't see Philip Humber's April 21 perfect game at Seattle.

But he had a legitimate excuse.

Williams was on an amateur scouting mission, and he and other high-ranking officials outside the amateur scouting department have taken a more active role in evaluating some of the top players in the nation.

"I love it," Williams said of the opportunity to break away from other duties to watch some of the top high school and college players. "And the scouting department has been great about identifying guys. It's just the way the current structure is, and this is just not here. It's in most places. There are a lot of responsibilities, whether it be with your minor league system (or in the draft)."

The White Sox have sent some of their top officials to the Southeast throughout the spring. Buddy Bell, who was promoted last January as their vice president of player development and special assignments, spent a weekend scouting a college tournament in the Tampa Bay area in late February.

Assistant GM Rick Hahn scouted several top high school and college players throughout the Southeast during the first week of April.

"There are too many places to be as a general manager and not enough time to be there," Williams said. "It's something we're talking about internally, how we can work to a greater degree. It may come naturally."

In past years, scouting director Doug Laumann and his crosscheckers have done the in-person evaluating, with Williams watching video of top prospects in the team's draft room at U.S. Cellular Field. But the White Sox have the 13th overall pick in June this year, as well as the 48th overall selection as compensation for the loss of free agent Mark Buehrle. Williams hinted he might be able to do more scouting if he continues to feel confident in first-year manager Robin Ventura.

Chi-lites

• Infielder Drew Garcia and outfielder Justin Greene were promoted from Double-A Birmingham to Triple-A Charlotte. Garcia was batting .316/.370/.459 for the Barons and Greene was hitting .329/.413/.468.

• Righthanders Thomas Royse (elbow surgery) and Erik Johnson (elbow tendinitis) were in the process of throwing multiple innings in extended spring training.