The White Sox passed right-hander Nicholas Padilla through waivers unclaimed and have assigned him outright to Triple-A Charlotte, per Scott Merkin of MLB.com. He adds that outfielder Adam Haseley, who was designated for assignment earlier this week, cleared waivers and elected free agency. Chicago’s 40-man roster is currently at 39 players.
Padilla, 26, pitched 4 2/3 innings with the Sox this past season and another 1 2/3 frames with the Cubs in 2022. That’s the full extent of his MLB experience, and during those 6 1/3 frames he allowed four runs on 11 hits and three walks with seven punchouts. Padilla posted a terrific 2.21 ERA in the minors in 2022 but did so with worrisome command issues that caught up to him in 2023, when he was tagged for a 5.52 ERA in 45 2/3 innings with Charlotte, walking 17.6% of his opponents along the way.
Padilla has missed bats at average or better levels in the upper minors, and he sits around 94 mph with a sinker that generates huge ground-ball rates (58% in Triple-A this past season). If he can improve his strike-throwing, he could find his way back to the 40-man roster, but he’ll have to earn his way back as a non-roster invitee in spring training this year. If he doesn’t make the club this spring, he’ll likely open the ’24 season with the Knights.
The 27-year-old Haseley was the No. 8 overall pick by the Phillies back in 2017 but hasn’t yet produced in line with those considerable draft expectations. He’s spent parts of five seasons in the Majors between Philly and Chicago but managed only a .259/.319/.356 batting line — with much of his production at the plate coming early in his career. He’s struggled considerably over the past three seasons.
This past season, Haseley spent the bulk of the season in Charlotte, hitting .264/.338/.386 for the Knights. He walked at a respectable 8.9% clip, showed solid bat-to-ball skills (16.6%) and swiped 10 bags in 14 tries. He has considerable experience at all three outfield spots and has posted average or better defensive grades at each in the majors. The lefty-swinging Haseley has struggled against same-handed opponents throughout his career but does carry a decent .262/.320/.371 slash against right-handers. He’ll likely latch on with a club looking for some speed and/or versatile outfield depth on a minor league deal.