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Daver
06-05-2002, 12:53 PM
CHICAGO--Keith Foulke, one of baseball's best closers the last three years, has consistently said he'd rather be starting. He might get his chance if the White Sox are right about San Diego State lefty Royce Ring.

Sticking to the organizational policy of stockpiling pitching, which they established with the 1997 White Flag trade that brought Foulke and others from San Francisco, they used the 18th overall pick in the draft on college baseball's best closer. Ring generates early comparisons to Randy Myers. The Sox believe he can come to the big leagues, first as a lefthanded specialist and then as a closer.

"He wants to be a closer,'' White Sox scouting director Doug Laumann said. "He said, 'I want to have an impact and try to win a game every day. I don't want to have to wait five days to win a game. I want to have a chance every day. And he pitches that way. He's a power guy. He attacks hitters.''

Ring's fastball topped out in the mid-90s this season, when he went 5-1, 1.85 with 17 saves for the Aztecs. He had 55 strikeouts and 13 walks in 39 1/3 innings, holding batters to a .204 average.

Ring relishes the closer's role. In Trevor Hoffman fashion, he entered games with music blaring, in his case Metallica's "Sad But True.''

"It's great,'' Ring said about being selected by the White Sox. "I've been working real hard to get to this point.''

Ring is 6-foot-1 and weighs 215 pounds. That's down from about 250 pounds as a freshman. While improving his conditioning, Ring has also developed a knee-buckling curveball and an average changeup.

Laumann and senior scouting director Duane Shaffer had targeted Ring as the top player who they felt might still be on the board when they picked in the first round. While the organization has promising closers in the high minors--Edwin Almonte at Triple-A Charlotte and Joe Valentine at Double-A Birmingham--they are thin in bullpen lefthanders. They haven't developed a top lefthanded reliever since Scott Radinsky.

"Thankfully we got the guy that we wanted,'' Laumann said. "We got the guy that we targeted, and we are pleased with that.''

This marks the fourth time in the last five years that the White Sox have spent their top pick on pitching, the exception being Stanford slugger Joe Borchard in 2000. "We definitely like to draft pitching,'' Laumann said. "Pitching either brings you other pitchers or other players [in trades] so we kind of stick with that philosophy.''

On the first day of the draft, the Sox took pitchers with 14 of 22 picks. They took Louisburg (N.C.) College righthander Josh Rupe in the third round and Keller (Tex.) High School lefthander Ryan Rodriguez in the fourth. They invested an eighth-round pick in Texas A&M righthander Todd Deininger, a Joliet, Ill., native who didn't sign when the Cubs took him in the fifth round of the 1999 draft.

The Sox also are excited about their Long Beach State center fielder Jeremy Reed, who they took in the second round. "We think Jeremy's going to be a quality defensive center fielder,'' Laumann said. "He's got a chance to be a leadoff type of guy.''

LongDistanceFan
06-05-2002, 10:52 PM
Originally posted by daver
alot of hype for a lousy draft........

Daver
06-05-2002, 10:54 PM
Originally posted by LongDistanceFan
alot of hype for a lousy draft........

My opinion will be in my column on the main page LDF.

LongDistanceFan
06-05-2002, 10:56 PM
Originally posted by daver


My opinion will be in my column on the main page LDF. ok... thanks

CubKilla
06-05-2002, 10:58 PM
The Sox will be fine just as long as he doesn't enter any games against Cleveland to Whitesnake songs. With college numbers like those I'm expecting a "Messiah-like" article from Marrioti about this guy in the near future.

Chisox_cali
06-05-2002, 11:02 PM
Originally posted by daver


Ring relishes the closer's role. In Trevor Hoffman fashion, he entered games with music blaring, in his case Metallica's "Sad But True.''



Gotta love that!! Keith needs his own music too. I've been saying it for a while somebody should have "Walk" by Pantera, assuming they don't actually walk a lot of people :D:

Jerry_Manuel
06-05-2002, 11:05 PM
Originally posted by Chisox_cali
Gotta love that!! Keith needs his own music too. I've been saying it for a while somebody should have "Walk" by Pantera, assuming they don't actually walk a lot of people :D:

You should pick Foulke music, Cali. I'm sure Keith would be into your strange, cult following type music. Whatever works though.

Don't get all mad, Cali. Just trying to get a good rip at your music like Doub would want me to. :D:

Chisox_cali
06-05-2002, 11:16 PM
Originally posted by Jerry_Manuel


You should pick Foulke music, Cali. I'm sure Keith would be into your strange, cult following type music. Whatever works though.

Don't get all mad, Cali. Just trying to get a good rip at your music like Doub would want me to. :D:

It's alright I'll get my vengence soon... :smile:

I don't know if Foulke is into Metal or not. I know Paulie is though so I can help him.

Vsahajpal
06-06-2002, 04:10 AM
Originally posted by LongDistanceFan
alot of hype for a lousy draft........


Don't judge a book by its cover

LongDistanceFan
06-06-2002, 10:18 AM
Originally posted by Vsahajpal



Don't judge a book by its cover
ok that kool, but how do you judge the draft?
weren't you the one who was saying that the first round was a players drafted for signability?

Vsahajpal
06-06-2002, 04:41 PM
Originally posted by LongDistanceFan

ok that kool, but how do you judge the draft?
weren't you the one who was saying that the first round was a players drafted for signability?

That doesn't make it a bad choice, though. Ring is probably one of the most major league ready players in the draft

LongDistanceFan
06-06-2002, 05:03 PM
Originally posted by Vsahajpal


That doesn't make it a bad choice, though. Ring is probably one of the most major league ready players in the draft ok...... i will accept that and only time will tell, whether it was a mistake to pass on some of those other players who were ranked to be taken at that slot............

btw here is a chat question of the sox draft from BA>>>>>>> Q:
Please help me find something positive about the White Sox draft. Their first two picks seemed to be stretches, a LHP set-up man and an outfielder who was not on anyone's radar screen. Can you give some guidance.

A: Allan: It's obvious the White Sox were under some budget constraints, but I think they did quite well still. I see Ring as more than just a set-up guy. He's got the stuff and makeup to close. Reed was a bit of a stretch in the second round since most scouts I talked to see him as a fourth outfielder.