No. 2 prospect Colás is raking, and learning, in the Minors

May 21st, 2023

CHICAGO -- features a .338/.405/.523 slash line over 16 games since being optioned from the White Sox to Triple-A Charlotte on May 2.

But there’s more than raw production being looked at by the White Sox in regard to the development of the team’s starting right fielder during April.

“Going back to last season … I don’t think anyone believed he was a finished product -- we still don’t,” said White Sox assistant general manager/player development Chris Getz during an extensive recent media session at Guaranteed Rate Field. “We’ve really focused on certain facets of the game.

“We’ve sat down with Colás on a daily basis, at least the staff there in Charlotte, to go over the preparation needed to be a professional along with having to make in-game adjustments. He’s communicated really well with the staff and players.

“Our evaluation is beyond just his numbers,” Getz added. “It’s really what goes into being a Major League player. When he comes back here to Chicago, we want to be productive and sustainable to help us get our season back on track.”

The goal for Colás is that once he returns to the White Sox, he stays with the White Sox. Some of his struggles were uncharacteristic and not seen before from the 24-year-old, but the transition can be tough to the Majors.

“Oftentimes, it’s easier to make the adjustments in your game at the Minor League level than at the Major League level,” said Getz of Colás, who slashed .211/.265/.276 with one home run over 25 games with the White Sox. “It did appear that he was trying so hard to get immediate results, and this game can be very brutal if you’re chasing results. So, we’re trying to improve his process, and hopefully the results come shortly thereafter.

Getz explained the process improvement in detail.

“Understanding how pitchers are going to attack you, staying even-keeled and not falling in the trap of the emotions of the game and trying to make up for prior at-bats and misplays or poor decisions and continue to focus on competing,” Getz said. “Defensively, there were some areas in regard to some of his routes, along with some of his throwing, which we’ve dialed in on and are looking to improve. We’re just going to continue to build on it. But we’ve got a plan going in.

“I’m really proud of the staff and how it’s been presented to Oscar. I’m also happy to how he’s responded and bought into what’s been set out for him.”

Montgomery update
Colson Montgomery, the No. 1 White Sox prospect and No. 27 prospect overall according to MLB Pipeline, has yet to play an inning during the regular season after taking part in his first big league Spring Training. The confident shortstop has been dealing with a mid-back strain.

“He’s continuing to go through the rehab process, and it has improved a good amount here in the last week or two,” Getz said. “We are increasing his activities and look forward to getting him back on the baseball field. This mid-back strain seems to be kind of in the rear-view mirror and hope to get a good chunk of the season this year.”

Montgomery, 21, was the team’s top pick in the 2021 MLB Draft. His lost time eventually could be made up in the Arizona Fall League, but the White Sox want to ride the momentum of his development from a strong ’22 showing in the upcoming weeks and months.

“He had an excellent first season and although he’s been dealing with an injury, my preference would be to be dealing with it on the front end of the year just so we can get a good chunk of production on the field and have a healthy offseason,” Getz said. “There’s still plenty of season left.

“We’ll look at some fall options for him as well. Hopefully just continue to build his trajectory toward the Major Leagues.”

Ramos update
Bryan Ramos, the No. 3 White Sox prospect, also has not played this season due to a groin-related injury following a strong showing at big league camp. He has DH’d and played third base in extended Spring Training and should shortly join Double-A Birmingham.

“Everything has been really positive for him physically,” Getz said. “Hopefully this injury is behind him and he’s strong and ready to go.”

Vera update
Norge Vera, the No. 12 White Sox prospect, walked six over 1 1/3 innings in two starts for High-A Winston-Salem before being sidelined by a lower-back strain. The right-hander is trending in the right direction.

“His velocity is climbing, but most importantly, it’s just how his body’s responding,” Getz said. “He’s recovering well, and hopefully we get him back shortly with his teammates in Winston.”