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Moncada ready for first Opening Day

Club excited to see young second baseman over course of full season
MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- Yoan Moncada knocked out two hits in two at-bats and scored two runs during the White Sox 9-5 exhibition victory over the Triple-A Charlotte Knights on Monday night. There's little doubt as to the high level of talent possessed by the 22-year-old second baseman -- and former top overall prospect per MLB Pipeline -- but he's gradually gaining the experience and confidence to match at the big league level.

"I don't want to limit his ceiling, but this is another growing year for him," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "He's going to break with us, going to have an opportunity now to see Major League pitching and start the season for the first time.

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CHICAGO -- Yoan Moncada knocked out two hits in two at-bats and scored two runs during the White Sox 9-5 exhibition victory over the Triple-A Charlotte Knights on Monday night. There's little doubt as to the high level of talent possessed by the 22-year-old second baseman -- and former top overall prospect per MLB Pipeline -- but he's gradually gaining the experience and confidence to match at the big league level.

"I don't want to limit his ceiling, but this is another growing year for him," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "He's going to break with us, going to have an opportunity now to see Major League pitching and start the season for the first time.

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"It's an exciting time for him. At 22, maybe 23 this year, he continues to mature and handle everything as if he had been around the game a long time. He continues to trust the work he's putting in, and that allows him to hopefully have a really good year for us. He's going to hit some valleys like all players will. His understanding and his maturity will continue to get him through those valleys, and not get too excited about the peaks."

Friendly competition
Players from the White Sox and the affiliate Knights traveled together from Arizona Sunday night. The White Sox moved on to Kansas City for Opening Day on Thursday, while the Charlotte players returned to Arizona with their season opener coming April 5 at Durham. Players such as Reynaldo Lopez, Lucas Giolito, Carson Fulmer, Nicky Delmonico, Adam Engel and Moncada spent significant time in Charlotte last year before graduating in-season to the big league club.

"We were just out there talking about how we can't truly exist without each other," said Renteria on Monday. "It's very important for us to get out there and be a part of this. We maintain a serious connection with all the levels. It's an opportunity to kind of say thank you, and be a part of it."

Injury report
Tim Anderson was scratched from the White Sox lineup prior to the game. The shortstop has a sore right shoulder, but the move was deemed precautionary by the team and doesn't appear to be serious.

Delmonico also was out of the White Sox lineup due to soreness in his left thigh/hamstring area. Much like Anderson, the absence was precautionary. Tyler Saladino replaced Anderson at shortstop, while Leury Garcia started in left.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Yoan Moncada