Let’s learn something about every late round White Sox draft pick

By now, you’ve likely read several articles about the White Sox top two draft picks, Jake Burger and Gavin Sheets. You’ve likely already read at least an article or two about the interesting day two selections the White Sox made in rounds 3-10.

But alas, the MLB Draft drags on for another 30 rounds after that. And it’s virtually impossible to familiarize yourself entirely with all 40 of the players added to the White Sox organization over these three days. Besides, why would you? Several of these late round picks will never be part of the organization, while many — if not most — will cycle through their careers without ever doing much to create a blip on the average fan’s radar.

Sure, I can sell you on caring about these guys because of the exceptions. Mark Buehrle went in the 38th round! Hector Santiago was found in the 30th round, and turned into Adam Eaton who turned into Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez, and Dane Dunning!

So, yeah, gems can be found. But while it’s fun to dream on one of these guys turning into the next draft steal, the likelihood is minimal. Still, at least for the time being, each one of these players is, as of this typing, a White Sox draft pick. So it is our duty to learn something about each one. So learn we will. Below I’ve listed all of the White Sox draft picks from rounds 11-40, and tried to find at least one interesting thing about each one.

11th round, 327th overall: Will Kincanon, RHP, Indiana State

Kincanon is a local kid, born in Berwyn, and was taken by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 29th round of the 2016 draft out of Triton College in River Grove. I found a video of someone talking about him on That video says he has starter potential but his command issues might relegate him to relief at the professional level. He tossed 79 innings in his lone season with the Sycamores, striking out 93 but walking 35 and posting a 5.24 ERA. I found his Twitter account, but he hasn’t tweeted since last August.

12th round, 357th overall: Justin Yurchak, 3B, SUNY-Binghamton

Yurchak spent his freshman season at Wake Forest, where he was named to the ACC All-Freshman team, before transferring to SUNY-Binghamton. In his lone season with the American East school, he hit .320/.474/.442 with just 12 strikeouts to 41 walks. This Fangraphs article from August 2016 after Yurchak spent a summer in the Cape Cod League suggests he could be a “legit prospect.”

13th round, 387th overall: Tate Blackman, 2B, Ole Miss

If you Google Tate Blackman the first suggested search is “Tate Blackman hair” because, well … yeah. He hit .302/.420/.525 in his junior season with the Rebels but was suspended along with teammate Colby Bortles back in March for “not meeting the standards of the Ole Miss baseball program.” Blackman was drafted in the 20th round by the Milwaukee Brewers out of high school. He has three older brothers named Trey, Teddy, and Tanner, which is notable to me because my parents gave all three of their kids names that started with the letter “C.” Here’s his Twitter account.

14th round, 417th overall: Alex Destino, OF, South Carolina

Destino seemed well regarded as a prospect coming into the 2017 season, but his numbers dropped a bit from his sophomore to junior seasons with the Gamecocks. He went from .321/.373/.509 as a sophomore to .255/.338/.441 this season. He still showed plenty of pop, though, hitting a team leading 10 home runs, which matched the total from his sophomore campaign. Also, Twitter.

15th round, 447th overall: Tyler Frost, OF, Gonzaga

Frost is like Destino in that his batting average dipped a bit from his sophomore to junior seasons, but he increased his power from seven home runs to nine. This is literally the most interesting thing I can find about Tyler Frost.

16th round, 477th overall: Logan Taylor, OF, Louisville

Looking up Taylor led me to figure out he shares a name with a current Modesto Nut. The White Sox infatuation with Louisville players is starting to get weird, but his bio has taught me that his favorite athlete is Ben Revere (what?), and he was a two-time intramural badminton champion in high school. He hit one home run in 530 career at-bats in college. Oh, now I get why he likes Ben Revere so much.

17th round, 507th overall: Blake Battenfield, RHP, Oklahoma State

Battenfield made just two starts in his first three seasons with the Cowboys, and 11 this season. He walked 31 in batters in 69.2 innings. He went to high school in a city called Broken Arrow.

18th round, 537th overall: Hunter Kiel, RHP, LSU

Kiel was a former 29th round pick by the Diamondbacks who threw only 6.1 innings this season, giving up 13 earned runs in the process. He can supposedly throw 97, though, so *shrug.” His Twitter handle is Kiellionaire, and I still can’t decide if that’s a point for him or against him.

19th round, 567th overall: Anthony Herron, RHP, Missouri State

Not to be confused with the former NFL defensive lineman from Bolingbrook, Herron has now been drafted three times, going in the 32nd round to the Cardinals out of high school and the 34th round by the Mets after his sophomore season at Jefferson College. He apparently developed tendinitis while playing in the Cape Cod League last summer and didn’t pitch at all for Missouri State this season. Can’t confirm whether or not the White Sox drafted him solely in order to make sure Jake Burger has a friend in Rookie Ball.

20th round, 597th overall: David Cronin, 2B, University of Illinois-Chicago

A local kid from Orland Park, there’s a David Cronenberg joke to be made somewhere in here. He hit .313/.429/.435 for the Flames and walked more often than he struck out. He’s listed at just 5-foot-9 and majors in Crimenology. Here’s a story about how he’s best friends with UIC teammate Ricardo Ramirez.

21st round, 627th overall: John Parke, LHP, South Carolina

Parke, the third White Sox draft pick from South Carolina, shares a name with a United States Army engineer and Union general from the American Civil War. Gave up 24 runs in 25.1 innings for the Gamecocks in 2017.

22nd round, 657th overall: Joseph Benitez, LHB, University of South Carolina-Aiken

Benitez was great for a school I’ve never heard of after spending three seasons at Old Dominion. He struck out 135 batters and posted a 2.63 ERA in 116.1 innings as a senior. Also, he apparently overcame thyroid cancer early in his collegiate career while still at Old Dominion.

23rd round, 687th overall: Mikey Duarte, SS, UC-Irvine

Duarte hit .320 in 194 at-bats with the Anteaters in his redshirt senior season, and has baseball in his blood. He’s cousins of the Laird brothers (Gerald and Brandon), and his grandfather’s cousin was apparently Hall of Famer Bobby Doerr.

24th round, 717th overall: Vince Arobio, RHP, Pacific

Arobio spent most of his four years of college as Pacific’s closer, saving seven games this season and 22 in his career. He has 119 strikeouts in 112 career innings pitched.

25th round, 747th overall: Jose Garcia, OF, University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley

Another season, Garcia spent two years at community college before transferring to RGV, where he hit over .300 in each season with more walks than strikeouts. Am I holding your interest?

26th round, 777th overall: Michael Staudinger, OF, Azusa Pacific University

Hit .359 with 11 home runs as a junior and is from Sammamish, Wash. I could really go for a Sammamish right about now. Hello? Is this thing on?

27th round, 807th overall: J.J. Muno, SS, UC Santa Barbara

Muno is a redshirt junior who hit .246 with 14 stolen bases this season. His sister goes to UCLA and it apparently created some family tension when the Gauchos and Bruins faced off this year.

28th round, 837th overall: Laz Rivera, IF, University of Tampa

Rivera mashed at the Division II school, which makes sense because he was Baseball America’s Division II Preseason Player of the Year coming into the season. (I know, I also was unaware BA gave such awards). Rivera’s family came to the United States from Cuba when he was 2 years old and he started his collegiate career at Miami before winding up at Tampa. This is the story from which I learned all of this.

29th round, 867th overall: Joe Mockbee, LHP, Michigan State

Mockbee is another senior arm whose numbers got progressively worse during his collegiate career. He posted a 5.15 ERA in 43.2 innings as a senior, but did strike out 56 batters in the process.

30th round, 897th overall: Ryan Erickson, LHP, Iowa

Another Big Ten senior left-handed arm, Erickson’s story is actually kind of interesting. He starred in junior college, then had to beg for a tryout at Iowa after spending his first year there as a traditional college student. You can read about it here, but Erickson’s senior season consisted of 75 innings with a 3.00 ERA, which was a solid comeback from a junior year where he pitched mostly in relief and had nearly as many walks (24) as strikeouts (25).

31st round, 927th overall: Parker Rigler, LHP, Kansas State

Rigler threw the first no-hitter by a Kansas State pitcher since 1991 back in March (against my alma mater) and looks kind of like Clayton Kershaw (look), so I’m totally sold. In 76 innings as a senior he struck out 51, walked 44, and posted a 3.67 ERA. His K-State bio says he aspires to own a construction company.

32nd round, 957th overall: Greg Minier, LHP, Washington

Minier attended both Bethune-Cookman and Ventura College before making his way to Washington, where he pitched primarily in relief. He’s apparently learning (or maybe learned at this point) the art of Tai Chi.

33rd round, 987th overall: Kevin George, LHP, Menlo College

George transferred to Menlo from Santa Clara University, and was probably pretty good because he went to Menlo and got drafted. What’s Menlo College, you ask? Turns out, current Kannapolis Intimidator Max Dutto, drafted by the White Sox in the ninth round a year ago, also went to Menlo. As did Lucas Erceg, who the Brewers took in the second round last season.

34th round, 1,017th overall: Michael McCormick, RHP, Eastern Illinois University

Hell yeah. EIU for life. Go Panthers.

35th round, 1,047th overall: Riley Crean, RHP, Bloomington North High School (Indiana)

The White Sox went from round eight to round 35 between taking high school players, and this particular one is the son of former Indiana University basketball coach Tom Crean. Crean was an Indiana commit who will apparently forgo becoming a Hoosier and instead attend IMG Academy next year, which will make him eligible for the MLB Draft again a year from now.

36th round, 1,077th overall: Alex Widmer, RHP, Norwayne High School (Ohio)

Widmer is committed to Malone University. I’ve never heard of Malone University and that’s literally the only thing I can find on him. I’m sure he’s a nice kid with a fine future in front of him.

37th round, 1,107th overall: Ted Andrews, RHP, Tulane

Andrews spent three years at Furman before transferring to Tulane for his senior season. Has battled injuries throughout his career and already has had Tommy John surgery.

38th round, 1,137th overall: Dylan Horvitz, C, New Trier High School (Illinois)

I’ve got nothing, honestly.

39th round, 1,167th overall: Chance King, RHP, IMG Academy

Chance King is seriously the son of Larry King. This somehow isn’t a joke. He’s 18 years old and 6-2, 190. I hope he becomes the best player in baseball history.

40th round, 1,197th overall: Angelo Smith, LHP, Harold R. Richards High School (Illinois)

Smith is from the White Sox fantastic ACE program, and is signed to play baseball at Michigan next season. Something tells me he’ll be sticking to that commitment.

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2 comments on “Let’s learn something about every late round White Sox draft pick”

Jim McCabe

EIU for life here too. The kid had a 1-6 record with a 7.43 ERA. What gives? (I also live near Rockford!)

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