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View Full Version : Neal Cotts may start game #2 of doubleheader


SoxxoS
07-09-2003, 11:58 AM
From the Daily Herald-
Mound mystery: The White Sox play a doubleheader at Cleveland on Saturday, and manager Jerry Manuel knows Mark Buehrle is going to take the mound in Game 1.

But the Sox are going to wait and see what happens over the next three games before naming a starting pitcher for Game 2.

If the bullpen is fresh, long reliever Gary Glover is likely to get the nod. If not, the White Sox are expected to call on a minor-league pitcher to make the start.

Even though he's scheduled to pitch in Sunday's All-Star Futures Game at U.S. Cellular Field, left-hander Neal Cotts is a strong possibility. Cotts is 8-3 with a 1.97 ERA in 15 starts at Class AA Birmingham this season.

SoxxoS
07-09-2003, 12:00 PM
Cotts has got lots going for him


07/07/03

DOUG SEGREST
News staff writer


Zito. Hudson. Mulder. Cotts?


The idea of joining the talented and young Oakland A's pitching rotation went through Neal Cotts' mind last summer, as he breezed to a stellar 12-6 season as an Oakland farmhand in Double-A Modesto, Calif.

Cotts was on the fast track to the big leagues.

Yet what made him desirable in Oakland made him even more desirable to competitors. When the A's swapped closers with the Chicago White Sox Billy Koch for Keith Foulke the deal was left unconsummated until the proverbial player to be named later could be determined.

That player, of course, would be Neal Cotts.

"I knew I'd be traded a month before it happened," Cotts said. "My agent knew it was coming.

"When it finally happened (on Oct. 16, 2002), I had mixed emotions. You feel one side doesn't want you. The flip side is that the other club wants you enough to trade for you."

A summer later, Cotts is on the fast track again, hoping to crack an equally young, but less talented, White Sox rotation.

He's done little to disappoint as a Birmingham Baron, going 8-3 with a stunning 1.97 ERA in 15 Southern League starts.

The numbers are enough to earn him a spot in Tuesday's Southern League All-Star Game. Cotts is one of four Barons heading to Jacksonville, Fla. The game will be played at the sparkling new Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

Cotts is also slated to appear in the Futures Game, the minor-league prospects showcase next Monday that precedes the July 15 Major League All-Star Game at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago.

Neal Cotts' destination has changed. Not his determination to get there.

"I have to look at (the trade) as a positive. I went in to this season with the same approach. If anything, I think I've been more focused."

Cotts has also benefited from the mentoring of Barons' pitching coach Juan Nieves, a former major league hurler.

"Juan's great," Cotts said. "He teaches both sides of pitching not only the mechanics but how to approach the game."

As good as the won-lost record was a year ago, Cotts was inconsistent. Witness a 4.12 ERA for the year.

As a Baron, he's been close to untouchable. Cotts has 99 strikeouts in 73 innings and has double-figure punchouts in three games.

He absorbed a rare pounding in his last start, a 12-7 loss to Jacksonville Friday, yet still emerged with a sub-2.00 earned run average.

Rated the 11th-best prospect in the Chicago organization before the 2003 season, Cotts has only enhanced his status as a big-time prospect.

And as a 23-year-old lefthander, the prospect of seeing Cotts in Chicago's rotation in the near future grows by the day.

"My goal is to focus on pitching here and not let anything distract me," Cotts said. "When they think I'm ready, they'll let me know."

boog_alou
07-09-2003, 12:05 PM
Wow, ever heard of rushing a kid to the majors? That kind of rush can really stunt a prospect's development.

Cotts has lots of GREAT stats. But he still gives up too many walks. I think he needs a bit more minor league experience, in learning how to control his stuff better. And, some minor leaguers with great stuff feel comfortable giving up a walk to a good hitter because the know they can K the next guy. In the majors, it isn't that easy for anyone. I think Cotts is still a step away, and the Sox shouldn't rush him out of desperation.

delben91
07-09-2003, 12:31 PM
Originally posted by boog_alou
Wow, ever heard of rushing a kid to the majors? That kind of rush can really stunt a prospect's development.

Cotts has lots of GREAT stats. But he still gives up too many walks. I think he needs a bit more minor league experience, in learning how to control his stuff better. And, some minor leaguers with great stuff feel comfortable giving up a walk to a good hitter because the know they can K the next guy. In the majors, it isn't that easy for anyone. I think Cotts is still a step away, and the Sox shouldn't rush him out of desperation.

Yeah, it could be a problem rushing Cotts if the Sox kept him up with the parent club. From the sounds of it though, they'd probably just have him make this spot start and then go back to Birmingham. It could be good for him, give him a taste of what he's striving for, a reward for a good first half. At the same time, by sending him back to Birmingham afterwards, I doubt it'd "stunt his growth" as a player/prospect.

DrCrawdad
07-09-2003, 01:06 PM
Put DrCrawdad down for someone who's in favor of giving Cotts a shot against the Indians.

TheRockinMT
07-09-2003, 01:16 PM
I don't think the Sox will call up Cotts to pitch one game because we have several at the AAA level who can start, and besides he is playing Sunday in the futures game. However, if Cotts did pitch one game I wouldn't call it a rush to the bigs. It happens a lot (or used to anyway) that a team will bring up a deserving phenom to help with a game and it gives him a chance to taste the high life.

DrCrawdad
07-09-2003, 02:09 PM
I wonder if one reason the Sox are considering calling up Cotts is to reduce the suffering of media and fans about the Foulke-Koch trade.

SoxxoS
07-09-2003, 02:14 PM
We haven't brought up a highly touted pitcher in a while, so the Sox are getting anxious. They had the time of their lives rushing up Wells, Garland Rauch and Wright so they don't want to stray away from the mean.

Randar68
07-09-2003, 02:17 PM
Originally posted by SoxxoS
We haven't brought up a highly touted pitcher in a while, so the Sox are getting anxious. They had the time of their lives rushing up Wells, Garland Rauch and Wright so they don't want to stray away from the mean.

That was a different GM, folks. The Sox have had a clear change in philosophy over the past 2 years.

Randar68
07-09-2003, 02:18 PM
Originally posted by TheRockinMT
because we have several at the AAA level who can start

Like who? The Salad Shooter? there is almost no talent on the AAA pitching staff, and Rauch is on the DL. Felix Diaz would be the only possibility.

moochpuppy
07-09-2003, 02:24 PM
Originally posted by Randar68
Like who? The Salad Shooter? there is almost no talent on the AAA pitching staff, and Rauch is on the DL. Felix Diaz would be the only possibility.

Whatever happened to Jeff Juden? He had some success with the Expos and then seemed to disappear on our AAA squad.

ScottyTheSoxFan
07-09-2003, 02:28 PM
is josh stewart healthy?

boog_alou
07-09-2003, 02:38 PM
Originally posted by ScottyTheSoxFan
is josh stewart healthy?
I don't know. Would anyone want him to start if he were?

DrCrawdad
07-11-2003, 01:56 PM
What's the latest news on whether or not Cotts will be starting on Saturday?

TheRockinMT
07-11-2003, 01:59 PM
Originally posted by Randar68
Like who? The Salad Shooter? there is almost no talent on the AAA pitching staff, and Rauch is on the DL. Felix Diaz would be the only possibility.

Mike Porzio for instance could be a legitimate candidate to start one game. Josh Stewart is another one...

Please remind me who the Salad Shooter is? I know I should know that one.

SoxxoS
07-11-2003, 02:04 PM
Originally posted by DrCrawdad
What's the latest news on whether or not Cotts will be starting on Saturday?

If I was a betting man...it's going to be Rick White.

delben91
07-11-2003, 02:18 PM
Originally posted by DrCrawdad
What's the latest news on whether or not Cotts will be starting on Saturday?

From the Tribune. (http://chicagosports.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/cs-030710soxnotes,1,4377430.story?coll=cs-whitesox-headlines)
It's towards the bottom of the article. Looks like White would do it, but begrudingly. Stewart gets the nod from the writer.

hold2dibber
07-11-2003, 03:04 PM
Originally posted by delben91
From the Tribune. (http://chicagosports.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/cs-030710soxnotes,1,4377430.story?coll=cs-whitesox-headlines)
It's towards the bottom of the article. Looks like White would do it, but begrudingly. Stewart gets the nod from the writer.

Sounds like it will depend on how deep into the game Wright goes tonight. If they have to use long relievers tonight (White and/or Glover) than they'll probably bring someone up to start the 2nd game tomorrow. Sounds like a crappy plan - if it turns out that way, they'll end up starting some guy who spent all night on a plane.

Daver
07-11-2003, 05:45 PM
Originally posted by TheRockinMT


Please remind me who the Salad Shooter is? I know I should know that one.

Ryan Kohlmeier.