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MiLB Preview – 5 Names to Know: ACL and DSL White Sox

by Michael Suareo

The Arizona Complex League and the Dominican Summer League are set to kick off today, which means we have even more White Sox prospects to discuss! Keep in mind, the ACL roster specifically will shake up in July and August after the First Year Player Draft, and the DSL roster is mostly comprised of players the White Sox signed as International Free Agents throughout this current signing period.

The Sox have some toolsy and intriguing prospects set to make their 2022 season debuts; here are five from each of the teams.

Arizona Complex League (ACL) White Sox

Victor Quezada (1B/3B)

2021 Stats (DSL White Sox): 49 games, .250/.353/.436, 6 HRs, 20 RBIs, 14 SBs

The White Sox international scouting director Marco Paddy may have found a gem in Victor Quezada. After signing for $500,000 out of the Dominican Republic, Quezada came into his first professional season in the Dominican Sumer League ready to show off his talent. He truly stuffed the stat sheet, putting up 6 home runs, 11 doubles, and 14 stole bases in 184 plate appearances. Despite striking out in over 28% of his at-bats, he kept a patient approach at the plate with a walk rate at just above 14% as well. His tools make him the most intriguing prospect in the ACL until the First Year Player Draft in July.

Dario Borrero (1B/OF)

2021 Stats (DSL White Sox): 5 games, .357/.438/.429, 0 HRs, 2 SBs

An imposing presence on the field, the 6’5 Dario Borrero will look to establish himself in this farm system after being limited to only 5 games in 2021. Borrero finished 2021 with a .357/.438/.429 slash line while limiting his strike out rate to just 12.5% during his limited time on the field. While he is yet to hit a home run in his professional career, he is loaded with raw left-handed power and will look to tap into it this season.

Cameron Butler (OF)

2021 Stats (ACL White Sox): 18 games, .083/.254/.125, 0 HRs, 1 SBs

While his career got off to a bit of a rocky start, Cameron Butler has enough talent to get back on track with a 2nd season in the ACL. Drafted in the 15th round out of Big Valley Christian High, Butler signed for an over-slot bonus of $150,000 despite a commitment to play college ball at California Polytechnic State University. He is looking to bounce back from a .083/.254/.125 2021 slash line in 2021.

Manuel Guariman (C)

2021 Stats (DSL White Sox): 31 games, .317/.378/.366, 0 HRs, 2 SBs

Another member of the 2021 international signing period, Guariman may be the most intriguing catching prospect in the White Sox organization. He had a solid showing at the plate in his professional debut in 2021 with a .317 batting average and a 116 wRC+ in the DSL, although there was very little extra base hit ability on display. He kept his strike out rate under 10%, however, so his bat-to-ball skills appear to be advanced for his age.

Erick Bello (RHP)

2021 Stats (ACL White Sox): 26.1 IP, 5.47 ERA, 10.25 K/9, 9.57 BB/9

Erick Bello began his career the same way fellow pitching prospect Cristian Mena did, as both signed with the Sox in 2019 and both made their professional debuts in the Arizona Complex League in 2021. Unlike Mena, however, Bello will return to Arizona for a 2nd season instead of advancing to Low-A Kannapolis. This is likely due to a 5.47 ERA, with advanced stats suggesting it could have been even worse, and his 9.57 BB/9. He did collect 30 strike outs in 26.1 innings, however, so there is clearly talent to work with here. Another year in Arizona could allow Bello to work on his command and bounce back in 2022.

DSL White Sox

Erick Hernandez (OF)

While overshadowed by the signing of Oscar Colas, Erick Hernandez was one of the biggest international signings the White Sox have completed in some time. Signing for a $1 million signing bonus, the 17-year-old outfielder from the Dominican Republic was ranked as the 28th best international prospect last year, going as far as drawing comparisons to Juan Soto. While that may be extreme, it does show just how impressive his tools and upside are, with the biggest one being his ability to make consistent solid contact from the left side of the plate.. Hernandez is the biggest name to watch for the DSL White Sox this season, and arguably has as high of a ceiling as anyone in the entire farm system.

Ryan Burrowes (SS)

Burrowes is an athletic shortstop who was signed out of Panama for $70,000. He has some tools to work with as a prospect with a 6’2 frame, and will be given a shot at sticking at shortstop. Ben Badler of Baseball America described Burrowes as an “intriguing sleeper” so he is one to keep an eye on as he makes his professional debut.

Marcelo Valladares (P)

Technically a member of the 2021 international signing period, Valladares will make his professional debut this season. He has a 6’4 frame and possesses a lively fastball that currently tops out at 93 mph with room to gain velocity. He also mixes in at least two off-speed pitches, and will most likely be given a shot to develop as a starting pitcher early on.

Guillermo Rodriguez (SS)

Another shortstop signed in the 2022 international signing period, Rodriguez was able to command a $400,000 signing bonus from the Sox, so it appears he was highly sought after throughout the league. While a bit smaller at 5’10, 175 lbs, he stood out to scouts for his instincts, defensive capabilities, and above average speed.

Jesus Mendez (P)

A 6’1 pitcher out of Venezuela, Jose Mendez already utilizes a 4-pitch mix that includes a mid 90s fastball, giving him a chance to stick as a starting pitcher. He also possesses solid bloodlines, as his brother is a former member of the Texas Rangers farm system. He will look to get his career off to a hot start as he makes his professional debut in 2022.

Follow us @SoxOn35th for more updates throughout the season!

Featured Image: MLB Pipeline / Twitter

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