White Sox ink first-rounder Schultz

July 23rd, 2022

CHICAGO -- The White Sox targeted left-handed pitcher Noah Schultz with the 26th pick in the 2022 MLB Draft last Sunday. And now they officially have Schultz as part of the organization.

MLB Pipeline’s Jim Callis reported earlier Saturday that Schultz had agreed to terms with the White Sox for $2.8 million, which was slightly above that pick’s slot value of $2,789,400. The team then confirmed the signing ahead of the second game of its doubleheader against Cleveland.

At 6-foot-9 and with a lower arm slot, the southpaw has been compared to Hall of Famer Randy Johnson and Chris Sale, who is one of the best pitchers in White Sox history. The White Sox believe the 18-year-old from Oswego East High School in Illinois has top-of-the-rotation potential.

“He was the target,” White Sox director of amateur scouting Mike Shirley said of Schultz. “How can he not be? We just didn’t know if we would get it across the finish line with what Noah wanted to do. He’s a supreme talent and had a lot of choices.”

Vanderbilt was one of those choices for Schultz, where he had made a strong commitment to play collegiately. He battled through mono during this past year with Oswego East, causing him to miss most of his senior season.

White Sox scouts stayed on Schultz, as he pitched for the Illinois Valley Pistol Shrimps in the Prospect League and posted a 0.93 ERA over 19 1/3 innings, with 37 strikeouts and just eight hits allowed. He was the one who wanted to solidify his value, per Shirley, and now he begins his career with the White Sox.

“I missed about seven weeks and it was really tough not being able to pitch. Being at all the games, it was great being part of the team,” Schultz said on the first night of the Draft, when he called the White Sox selection the best night of his life. “As soon as I got cleared, right back at it, trying to do everything I loved doing. Everything about baseball, I love.”

A minicamp for the White Sox Draft picks starts Sunday, with players having to report in Birmingham, Ala., by 4 p.m. They will be there for one week.

“We’ll get them up and moving,” Shirley said. “Get guys assessed.”