Carlos Rodon was the third overall pick in June’s draft and the former North Carolina State ace was in rookie-ball as of two weeks ago, but Scott Merkin of MLB.com reports that “there’s a better-than-average chance” the White Sox will promote the 21-year-old left-hander to the majors in September.
However, when asked about that possibility manger Robin Ventura replied:
I’m not even going down that far. We are concerned about what’s going on right here. If they say he’s pitching well enough to come up, then the more the merrier at this point.
Rodon is currently at Single-A and has thrown a grand total of nine professional innings, so “pitching well enough to come up” to Chicago isn’t really a factor yet. However, as Merkin notes the White Sox called up fellow first-round pick/college ace/southpaw Chris Sale shortly after he was drafted in 2010 and used him as a late-inning reliever.
For much of the year Rodon was considered the favorite to go No. 1 overall and he ended up signing for $6.6 million, which is significantly above the slot-recommend amount for the No. 3 pick.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.