Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Who will the White Sox recall Sept. 1?

It's the last week of August, and no doubt baseball fans around the country are wondering just who will be recalled from the minors to play for their favorite teams when the rosters expand Sept. 1.

I don't expect the White Sox to go crazy and call up 10 players or anything like that. The majority of their major-league ready prospects (Avisail Garcia, Josh Phegley, Andre Rienzo, Jake Petricka and Leury Garcia) are already on the 25-man roster.

But, the Sox do have three holes on their 40-man roster.  They could create a fourth spot later this week if they transfer relief pitcher Brian Omogrosso from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL. That means we will see at least four players recalled, and maybe as many as seven. Here are some guys that Southpaw (pictured) might be cheering for by the time the next homestand rolls around:

1. Erik Johnson, RHP: The 23-year-old is a combined 11-3 with a 2.07 ERA in 23 starts at Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte. He is 3-1 with a 1.79 ERA in nine starts since his promotion to Charlotte. The Sox will keep a careful watch on Johnson because he has thrown a career-high 135 innings this season. But he is a candidate for the 2014 starting rotation, so the team is going to want him to get his feet wet at the big-league level this year.

2. Daniel Webb, RHP: A 24-year-old potential closer, Webb hasn't allowed an earned run at Charlotte in over a month. He has struck out 36 batters in 24.1 innings since his promotion to Triple-A. Walks remain an issue -- he has 17 of them in those same 24.1 innings. But, Webb could be a bullpen piece for the Sox as soon as next season if he can refine his control just a little bit more.

3. Charlie Leesman, LHP: He's already on the 40-man roster, having started one game for the Sox earlier this month. At age 26, he's probably not considered a prospect anymore, but he might be handy as the 11th or 12th man on a pitching staff in the future. Look for Leesman to get a start or two in September as the Sox seek to lighten the workload of some of the young pitchers who have been in the big-league rotation all season.

4. Marcus Semien, IF: Here's a guy who really wasn't on the radar this year until he tore up Double-A to the tune of a .290 average, 21 doubles, 15 home runs and 20 stolen bases. I hesitate to put him on this list because he's struggled a bit since his promotion to Charlotte (.238, 8 doubles, 4 home runs, 1 stolen base), but he can play all over the infield and the Sox are looking for a third baseman for next year. They might call Semien up to see how he reacts in September. I suspect this is a player who will need to start 2014 in Triple-A, however.

Those are the four guys who we haven't seen much of yet that we might be getting a look at in September. The Sox will almost certainly recall another catcher, Hector Gimenez if he is healthy, or Bryan Anderson. Blake Tekotte, Deunte Heath, Brent Morel and Simon Castro are other players we saw earlier this year that could potentially get a recall, although I'm sure Sox fans won't be all that excited to see them again.

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