Chicago Black Sox

2016 Instructions

Just remember I owned you last year, however a potentially long year awaits the Sox after a tremendously successful run culminating in a 2015 season that led to a PCL championship for the second time in 4 years! Since the “throw in” the Sox have won their Division 5 of 6 years with 4 World Series appearances and 2 PCL Championships! This year will be the beginning of a rebuilding process that will hopefully see them back to compete again in 2017. In 2016 however, not so much.

My advice is to grab a juice or a cocktail and settle in as these games may take a while when you play Chicago in their home park, The Black Diamond. The pitching staff that really drove the 2015 team has pretty much left the building. You will score runs – maybe lots of them. The guys we are throwing out there now are, well, they were not acquired early in the auction. Lots of bullpen and I will urge you to go to them often. The mound will require quicker than normal hooks and adept bullpen usage, so please pay special attention to the pitching instructions and bullpen usage.

For offense the big bats are still there – Diamonds and all – so we hope to swing our way into a few victories. This will be like the “old Coors Field” where you have to be patient early, and hope your bats keep you in it long enough to get the set-up and closer guys in the pen. If we can stay in a game long enough we may surprise a few of you. Please be patient and avoid too many “Manager Decisions” during the game. We run a little, can play the occasional small ball (usually late in close games), but typically the offense in our park is all about the three-run homer.

Our future? All of our hopes lie on the shoulders of Spector Davis, soon to be an absolute “legend” in this league.

 

2016 Active Roster

Hitters            $   Grad                        Pitchers          $   Grad

Castillo, W

4

2016

Catcher v. RHP

 

Colon, B

6

2017

#3 starter

Rupp, C

5

2019

Catcher v. LHP

 

Hellickson, J

1

2019

#4 starter

Rizzo, A

4

2016

1B

 

Gonzalez, G

7

2018

#3 starter

Bour, J

4

2019

Reserve 1B and PH

 

Nelson, J

1

2019

#4 starter

Myers, W

12

2019

Reserve 1B/OF and PH

 

Paxton, J

4

2018

#5 starter – 6 max

Walker, N

15

2017

2B

 

 

 

 

 

Flores, W

3

2019

2B v. LHP / reserve SS

 

Strop, P

12

2016

Closer

Pujols, A

12

2016

3B and reserve 1B

 

Hoover, J

7

2019

Set-up

Aybar, E

3

2018

SS

 

Alvarez, J

3

2019

Set-up

Bryant, K

38

2019

LF/3B

 

Caminero, A

7

2019

Set-up

Herrera, O

8

2019

CF

 

Kontos, G

4

2018

Middle relief

Kemp, M

20

2017

RF/LF

 

Barrett, A

1

2019

Middle / Quick Stop

Piscotty, S

17

2019

RF

 

 

 

 

 

Hamilton, B

5

2018

CF – late defense/PR

 

 

 

 

 

Minors


Bruce, J

3

2018

Reds’ RF

 

Alvarez, H

2

2017

A’s SP

Turner, T

10

M

Nationals' future SS

 

Garza, M

1

M

Brewers’ SP

Davis, S

1

M

Future Big Time Star

 

Wisler, M

5

M

Braves’ SP

Starting Line-ups

Lineup 1, vs. L

Lineup 2, vs. L

Lineup 3, vs. R

Lineup 4, vs. R

Lineup 5, vs. R

8

Herrera*

8

Hamilton+

8

Herrera*

 

 

8

Herrera*

5

Bryant

5

Bryant

6

Aybar+

 

 

6

Aybar+

7

Kemp

9

Piscotty

7

Bryant

 

 

5

Bryant

3

Rizzo*

3

Pujols

3

Rizzo*

 

 

3

Pujols

9

Piscotty

7

Kemp

9

Kemp

 

 

9

Piscotty

4

Flores

4

Flores

5

Pujols

 

 

7

Kemp

2

Rupp

2

Rupp

4

Walker+

 

 

2

Castillo

6

Aybar+

6

Aybar+

2

Castillo

 

 

4

Flores

 

All left-handed pitchers not listed in Lineup 2

 

 

Only against:  Bumgarner, Happ, Heaney, Hamels, and Wood(s)

 

Standard lineup against right hand pitchers not listed in lineups 4 or 5.

 

Second lineup against:
Not used this year.

 

Third lineup against:
Richards, Peavy, Cole, Fiers, Bettis, Strasburg, Fister, Cueto, and Wacha.

Additional Notes on Lineups:
Never comes out when starting: Aybar, Bryant, Herrera, Rizzo, Walker.

Guidelines on Positions:

WHEN YOUR LEFTY STARTER EXITS THE GAME
Lineups 1 & 2: Typically no changes early. If you have zero or one lefties in the pen Flores immediately comes out for Walker. Rupp stays in through 6 but only makes the next at-bat if we are leading after that. Same for Hamilton when he starts in lineup 2. From the 6th on use “COMPARE” for best option on Rizzo/Pujols in lineup 2 – also the good spot for the double switch. Everything else remains.

WHEN YOUR RIGHTY STARTER EXITS THE GAME
Lineup 3: The only change you need to consider is the one for Pujols as he typically will not face a lefty reliever and is scheduled out after 6 anyway. Everyone else stays in through 6 after which you may want to use “COMPARE” for best options if trailing, notwithstanding those that “never come out”. With a lead stay put until late defense in the 8th/9th.
Lineup 5: Same as above except Pujols no longer has to come out, but measure the “Compare” values against a tough righty. Flores should not face a tough righty so gets pulled. Look for the double switch at 1B (Rizzo), 2B (Walker) and LF (Myers) if makes sense against your relievers.

 

Defense Matrix – Best Defense

C

1B

2B

SS

3B

LF

CF

RF

Rupp

Rizzo

Walker

Aybar

Bryant

Herrera

Hamilton

Piscotty

Castillo

Pujols

Flores

Flores

Pujols

Piscotty

Herrera

Kemp

 

Myers

 

 

 

Myers

Piscotty

Myers

 

Bour

 

 

 

Bryant

 

 

MISCELLANEOUS

Pitcher hitting / Pinch hitting / Pinch running

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Pitching Rotation
LOOK HERE!!!!!!!                                                            

 

YOUR GAMES to play at CHICAGO

 

 

My Games (Road Games)

 

Opp.

Game #1

Game #2

Game #3

 

 

Game #1

Game #2

Game #3

 

BAG

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Colon

 

LVB

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

SBM

Paxton

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

SCT

Nelson

Hellickson

Colon

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Colon

 

AZL

Paxton

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Colon

 

AUG

Nelson

Hellickson

Colon

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Colon

 

LAN

Nelson

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

HAW

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Colon

 

CHI

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PBC

Hellickson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

STL

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Nelson

Hellickson

Gonzalez

 

VBS

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

 

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Colon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Divisional Games – HOME GAMES

 

Divisional Games – Road Games

Opp.

Game #1

Game #2

Game #3

Game #4

 

Game #1

Game #2

Game #3

Game #4

PBC

Hellickson

Colon

Gonzalez

Paxton

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Gonzalez

Nelson

STL

Hellickson

Colon

Gonzalez

Nelson

 

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

Hellickson

VBS

Nelson

Colon

Gonzalez

Paxton

 

Paxton

Hellickson

Gonzalez

Nelson

# Starts:  Colon (20); Gonzalez (20); Hellickson (20); Nelson (19); Paxton (11)
CHI1

Managing the Starters

The game typically starts and soon thereafter the Chicago Manager will have one foot on the top step of the dugout. Please take note the following rule:

6.4 Joe Saunders Rule. Beginning with the 2014 season, a Starting Pitcher may not be removed from the game until one of the following events occurs: a) he has pitched at least 4 innings; or b) he has given up 4 or more runs. The only exception is that he may be pinch hit for after pitching three innings regardless of how many runs he has allowed.

There are no visions of complete games with this group. Five is good, six innings is a great outing. Anything more would be a bonus. Rule 6.4 requires patience early, but not much after that. If we are blown out real early you may elect to let the starter “take one for the team” and let him go a while. Outside of that you should never let a Chicago starting pitcher keep going while he is tired.

The guideline (depending on the “flow” of the game and not an absolute rule) is to pull the starter if we are still within 4 runs in or after innings 4-5; and within 3 runs in innings 6 or 7. A starter only bats in the bottom of the 6th if (1) he is taking one for the team, (2) the bullpen is spent, and (3) we have a lead of 4 runs or more – provided he enters inning 7 “batter by batter” and in no event does he face the potential “winning run”. In other words a real quick hook 7th inning on. Dice are fickle so my preseason estimate is about 4 complete games for this group.

 

Starting Pitcher Overview

Bartolo Colon
(some patience – that is as much as it gets)

Without an “Ace” we will look to Colon to eat up as many innings as he can and will be considered the “workhorse” of this staff. That said we will not wait too long to hit the pen if his struggles come too fast. As with all our starters he becomes batter-by-batter once we hit the 6th, and if blown out, then let him “take one for the team”. He can go deeper in games with leads of 3 runs or more – but again – quick hook after 6 in all close games.

Gio Gonzalez
(some patience)

You can also be a little patient with this lefty pitcher as he generally keeps the ball in the park. Plenty of innings but like Colon, he becomes batter-by-batter if still in the game once we hit the 6th. Same rules as Colon– go longer if cruising, but quick hook with a lead of 3 runs or less in close games after 5 innings.

Jeremy Hellickson
(little patience)

Can hold his own – but a real HR problem against the righty hitter so he will be “spotted” in starts at home (you play) and most of his work will be in road games. Like all our starters we are trying to get them into the 6th and at that point they go batter-by-batter”. A quicker hook is fine. No reason to milk an additional batter if he appears to be getting beat up.

Jimmy Nelson
(little patience)

He is tough on the righty hitter and will generally face those teams with big right-handed bats. If you have a lot of lefties against him, it will likely be a short night of work. There is no reason to keep him in against a heavy lefty lineup if he is getting hit hard. Hopefully we can stay close through 5 and then get him out of there.

James Paxton
(6 Innings MAX)

The lefty starter that keeps the ball in the park and much better against the righty hitter. I want to get his 6 innings in unless he is getting pushed around where we are in danger of getting too far back. He is a “Some Patience” pitcher.

Specific innings limitations:

Paxton – 6 innings is the max innings per start. This is not a guideline but a rule (based on his number of starts).

 

Managing the Bullpen

If there is any strength to the staff it would be in the pen. We have a pretty good closer in Strop, and a lot of innings with the guys we refer to as our “Setup and Middle Relief”. Anyone of these “Three Musketeers” can be the “alternate starter” when our scheduled starter has to leave the game early (prior to the 6th). These guys are actually the key to the staff!

The first guy in (unless it is Barrett to make the “Quick Stop”) is expected to pitch a longer run of innings. Therefore we do not double-switch early, nor does it matter if the reliever guy has to take an at-bat early in the game. They will be considered an “alternate starter”. Caminero and Alvarez are the first elections depending upon starter tendency (heavier versus the righty or lefty) coupled with the weighting of your lineup (lefty/righty). Use your best judgment. Hoover is a later inning set-up however he will also be the first in if Caminero pitched the earlier game(s) and is not available. It would not be unusual if all three made an appearance in a game.

I plan to use Kontos a lot in the road games I play (and in larger parks) where the HR factor is not as big a concern. His use here – in his home park – is defined in the overview (below) which is against a key righty or two, or in blow-outs either way. If we get a guy tired in the series, Kontos may have to fill that long relief role – just be conscious of those HR chances. Strop also has a lot of innings for a closer (68) so he can be used in a few 2-inning save situations.

Relief Pitcher Overview

Closer

Pedro Strop (68 IP) is the “closer”. Generally starts the 9th or comes into the game in the 8th in most all save situations. Can pitch 2-inning saves.

Setup and Middle Relief

J.J. Hover (64 IP) is preferably a late inning set-up but really can be used at any point in the game. Not the best candidate early against heavy lefty lineups, however keeps the ball in the park against the righty lineups. As with the other two in this column can come in for more than just a batter or an inning of work. Multiple innings are fine as we use a lot of pen.

Arquimedes Caminero (75 IP) is a balanced long-inning righty and really should be looked at as an “alternate starter” if having to spell the Starting Pitcher early in the game. Often the first guy out of the pen on early pulls. See above discussion on early exits.

Jose Alvarez (67 IP) is the lone lefty in the pen but is very versatile and can be used in a variety of situations. It is a balanced card and as with all lefties, should not face the big Lefty Masher in the later innings of close games (where we are within 3 runs or so). As with Caminero, see above.

Long Relief (mop-up) and “Quick Stop” Options

George Kontos (73 IP) is pretty much a lights out guy if he would not have thrown so many down the middle to lefty batters. His role at home (the games you will play) is to get one or even a string of righties out, or be the long-term mop-up guy in blowouts. Can face a lefty in a string of righty hitters, but please be aware of the HR factor in later innings/close games/et al.

Aaron Barrett (29 IP) is the “quick stop” – tough on the lefty, and can face a righty, but typically is used to get one or two key outs to get out of an inning.

 

Have a bunch of fun and,”…may the Black Diamond be with you”.

CHI2  CHI3  CHI4


2016 Awards:

2016 PCL Champion:

Santa Barbara Mooners

 

 

2016 MVP Voting:

MVP: B. Harper, LVB

Cy Young: J. Arriera, STL

2016 ALL STARS:

C: B. Posey, PBC

1b: J. Votto, AZL

2b: D. Gordon, STL

SS: Tie: B. Crawford, PBC; J. Peralta, AGN

3b: J. Kang, HAW

OF: B. Harper, LVB

OF: M. Trout, SCT

OF: R. Grichuk, SCT

Manager: Eric

GM: Mike

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