White Sox GM Rick Hahn ‘thrilled with the draft’
By daryl van schouwen Staff Reporter June 9, 2014 10:37PM
Updated: June 9, 2014 10:46PM
General manager Rick Hahn couldn’t have expressed more glee about the White Sox’ top three picks in the amateur draft, and he was more than happy with rounds 4 through 40, as well.
“We’re thrilled with the draft,’’ Hahn said Monday. “[Scouting director] Doug Laumann and his staff did a tremendous job.’’
In North Carolina State left-hander Carlos Rodon, the Sox got the premier collegian on the board after the Houston Astros and Miami Marlins drafted high school pitchers Brady Aiken and Tyler Kolek.
“Taking Carlos in the first round, we get a high-ceiling, close-to-the-majors potential front-end piece to fit in with this rebuilding plan that we have going on now,’’ Hahn said.
Hahn described second-rounder Spencer Adams as a high-ceiling high schooler and said third-rounder Jace Fry of Oregon State “is a polished left-handed starter who potentially could come quick, as well.’’
“There’s a lot of other guys of note that we were pleased to get, but I think those first three really set a great tone there,” Hahn said.
Rodon is represented by Scott Boras, whose relationship with the Sox has not been tight. Hahn downplayed that, and there is a feeling from both sides that a deal will get done, although the matter of how much over the $5.7 million slot remains to be seen. A rumor that $8 million is being sought doesn’t seem to have much substance.
“Look, in reality, we have a history with Scott, a positive history with Scott,’’ Hahn said. ‘‘He had Joe Crede, he’s got [Dayan] Viciedo, we had Andruw Jones here [a contract negotiated by Hahn]. A fair amount of this concern, or discussion on how this could be difficult, is unnecessary and really not significant to us determining what’s going to happen here.’’
Hahn said the Sox will be “aggressive, be fair and make an offer that, hopefully, convinces him it’s time to begin his professional career.”
That could include a big-league opportunity for Rodon, whose hard slider is major-league-ready, although Hahn said it’s unfair to put an expectation on his arrival.
This and that
Sox starters owned a 2.99 ERA over the last 18 games going into the homestand, and relievers were at 1.74 over the last 10 games.
The defense has been a different issue.
“Defensively, we need to get better,’’ manager Robin Ventura said. “The defense has to work for you. That’s it — you just have to find ways to make plays. Anytime you make miscues on defense, you’re just making pitchers work more. It’s too hard to win in this league if you’re doing that.’’
† Nate Jones played catch at about 60 feet on the field Monday.