The White Sox added Rutherford to the player pool Tuesday, Scott Merkin of MLB.com reports.
Rutherford, a first-round pick in 2016, has stalled in his progression since coming to the White Sox in 2017. The corner outfielder slugged a mere .365 with a .100 ISO across 438 plate appearances in 2019 at Double-A Birmingham.
The White Sox optioned Rutherford to Double-A Birmingham on Wednesday, Lamond Pope of the Chicago Tribune reports. He hit .154 (2-for-13) with a double, a walk and a run scored while in major-league camp.
Rutherford spent the offseason bulking up, presumably in response to criticism about his lack of power. The White Sox remain supportive of Rutherford, a first-round pick of the Yankees in 2017. He hit .265/.319/.365 with seven home runs over 480 plate appearances for the Barons in 2019. As a player that profiles as a corner outfielder, those numbers won't get him to the big leagues.
Rutherford gained 12 pounds of muscle over the offseason, Scott Merkin of MLB.com reports.
Rutherford is up to 212 pounds and spoke to the media about the importance of maintaining the positive weight throughout the season. General manager Rich Hahn added that he believes Rutherford built muscle in response to criticism from others over his lack of power in the minor leagues, though Hahn stated that wasn't a concern of the club. Rutherford spent the entirety of the 2019 campaign at Double-A Birmingham, where he hit .265/.319/.365 with seven home runs and nine stolen bases.
Rutherford was added to the White Sox's 40-man roster Wednesday, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports.
Rutherford progressed to Double-A Birmingham in 2019, where he hit .265/.319/.365 with seven home runs and 49 RBI over 118 games. He appeared in big-league spring training prior to the season, but he still likely has some time before he makes his major-league debut. His addition to the 40-man roster protects him from the Rule 5 draft.
Rutherford went 4-for-5 with two RBI for Double-A Birmingham in its 7-5 win over Chattanooga.
Rutherford has collected nine hits -- eight singles and one double -- across the last three games, lifting his season average 20 points in the process. Even after the surge, Rutherford's line still sits at a punchless .253/.293/.345 across 242 plate appearances. The 22-year-old's lack of power in particular puts a cap on his fantasy appeal, especially since he'll likely be limited to a corner-outfield role once he arrives in the majors.
Rutherford (undisclosed) is back in the lineup for Double-A Birmingham on Thursday, James Fegan of The Athletic reports.
Rutherford left Sunday's matchup with an undisclosed injury, and although the extent of the issue was never revealed, he appears to have returned to health. He's slashing .181/.224/.292 with three homers and 12 RBI over 40 games this season with the Barons.
Rutherford was removed from Sunday's game at Double-A Birmingham due to an undisclosed injury.
Rutherford is likely headed for further evaluation following his removal from the contest. The location and extent of the injury have yet to be determined.
Rutherford was invited to big-league spring training, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
Rutherford spent the entirety of the 2018 season at High-A Winston-Salem and led the Carolina League with 78 RBI and 131 hits. Most evaluators would like to see him hit more for power -- he went from two home runs to seven from 2017 to 2018 -- but the White Sox remain patient with Rutherford. The 21-year-old is expected to start the year at Double-A Birmingham, where we'll be watching to see if the corner outfielder can find his power zone.
Rutherford went 0-for-3 on Sunday for High-A Winston-Salem, snapping a 12-game hitting streak. The 21-year-old was banged up earlier this month, but has shown no signs of wear.
Rutherford hit .353 (18-for-51) during his streak, though only two of those hits went for extra bases. Winston-Salem manager Omar Vizquel cautioned against expectations being placed on the outfielder, telling Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune, Rutherford's swing is "very, very nice ... a lot of people say they are expecting power, but I don't think we should worry about that now. He's young and still learning his power zone. It will come." Rutherford has six home runs and leads the Dash with 66 RBI.
The White Sox are labeling Rutherford as day-to-day after the outfielder was banged up while attempting to make a catch at the wall in a game for High-A Winston-Salem on Wednesday, Rob Terranova of MiLB.com reports.
Rutherford flipped over the wall in pursuit of a deep fly to right field and was able to exit the field under his own power. The exact nature of Rutherford's injury hasn't been specified, but he was spotted walking with a limp, suggesting a leg issue could be in play. Though Rutherford's setback doesn't seem especially serious, the 21-year-old is the third major White Sox outfield prospect to succumb to an injury this week. Eloy Jimenez was ruled out for two weeks with an adductor strain and Luis Robert was ruled out for 4-to-8 weeks with a sprained thumb.
Rutherford went 4-for-5 with four RBI for High-A Winston-Salem on Thursday.
Rutherford has come out of the gates strong, hitting everything in sight. The soon-to-be 21-year-old has a six-game hitting streak and is batting .404 through 11 games. There are still long-term concerns whether the 6-foot-3 Rutherford can remain in center field or if his bat will play as a corner outfielder, but the first priority from the White Sox's perspective is to get his bat working after a rough 2017, and the early signs this year are positive.
Rutherford has five home runs and slugged .398 over 134 career minor-league games, but the White Sox remain confident in his ability, Scott Merkin of MLB.com reports. "Over time he's going to figure out, 'OK, what pitches can I drive here?' Maybe figure out pitches he can drive to the pull side. Things like that. He's showing signs of it and we are getting a little bit closer, but Blake has been, I couldn't be more excited to have him in our system," said White Sox director of player development Chris Getz.
Rutherford, who was the centerpiece acquired from the Yankees in the last year's Todd Frazier/David Robertson/Tommy Kahnle deal, slashed .213/.289/.254 in a 30-game look at Low-A Kannapolis. Despite an underwhelming minor-league performance, Getz remains patient with Rutherford. He cites the left-handed hitting outfielder using all fields and hanging in against lefties. The 20-year-old Rutherford has youth on his side, and there's still time for that predicted power to develop.
Rutherford, who was acquired in a trade Tuesday, was assigned to Low-A Kannapolis on Wednesday, Dan Hayes of CSN Chicago reports.
The White Sox's top prize in the deal that sent Todd Frazier, David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle to the Yankees, Rutherford will keep playing at the Low-A level after hitting .281/.342/.391 in 304 plate appearances with New York's South Atlantic League affiliate. The 20-year-old outfielder doesn't boast one true standout tool, but he offers quality contact and baserunning skills and could add power as he fills out his 6-foot-3 frame. It will likely be another two years before Rutherford merits serious consideration for a promotion to the big leagues.
Rutherford was traded to the White Sox on Tuesday as part of a multi-player deal.
Rutherford, who was one of the elite prospects in the Yankees' loaded farm system, is the headliner in the return the White Sox received for the services of major leaguers Todd Frazier, David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle. Rutherford was the 18th overall pick in the 2016 draft and has shown off his impressive hit tool during his first two seasons within the Yankees' minor-league system. The 20-year-old is still likely a couple of years away from making his big-league debut, but is certainly a valuable dynasty asset moving forward.
Rutherford (foot) was activated off the 7-day disabled list prior to Friday's game at Low-A Charleston.
The former first-round pick missed just under two weeks with a foot contusion and was able to slot into the lineup Friday and Saturday. The 20-year-old is slashing .273/.346/.383 through 49 games at Low-A this year.
Rutherford, 20, is currently on the 7-day disabled list with that is being called a foot contusion.
Prior to the injury, Rutherford was slashing .280/.355/.394 with one home run, 18 RBI and nine steals in 47 games for Low-A Charleston. While the injury is not considered serious, the Yankees will almost certainly be cautious with their first-round pick from a year ago.
Rutherford, 20, is hitting .255/.369/.340 with zero home runs, five steals (on six attempts) and a 24:17 K:BB in 111 plate appearances with Low-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The power that he put on display in spring training has yet to manifest in games against Low-A pitchers, but he is showcasing a very impressive approach and useful speed on the bases. Look for Rutherford's play to pick up this summer as he adjusts to the pitching at this level.
Rutherford will open the season at Low-A Charleston.
He missed the final week of the 2016 season with a hamstring injury, but was the talk of Yankees minor-league camp this spring, making a lot of hard contact and looking the part of a top-30 prospect. Rutherford reported to camp at 205 pounds, up 13 pounds from his draft weight -- gains that he attributes to his dedication to nutrition and strength training over the winter, Baseball America's Josh Norris reports. The idea behind adding "good weight" is that he will be able stay strong throughout his first year in a full-season league. This spring he showed off impressive raw power to go with the speed to handle center field, and has the potential to be a five-category contributor for fantasy owners in time. His stock should continue to trend up throughout the 2017 season.
Rutherford will miss the remainder of the season with a hamstring injury, MiLB.com reports.
Rutherford went 2-for-4 with a home run last Wednesday, but the 19-year-old hasn't played since. Per the report, the hamstring injury isn't believed to be anything overly serious, but the Yankees will play it safe with their 2016 first-round pick and shut him down for the remainder of the season.
Rutherford, 19, is hitting .408/.459/.645 with one home run and a 16:7 K:BB in 76 at-bats since getting promoted to the Appalachian League.
The Yankees' first-round selection in this year's draft may be a bit of a forgotten man after the additions of Gleyber Torres and Clint Frazier to the farm system, but Rutherford has emerged as a high-end prospect in his own right. He offers five-category potential down the road and will receive a full-season assignment in 2017 before he turns 20 on May 2.
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