There you have it.
After months of speculation, the White Sox have their next top prospect, someone they hope will be able to join the big league rotation within the next year or two in North Carolina State left-hander Carlos Rodon.
Rodon was the consensus No. 1 prospect in this year's draft for most of the past year, but a rough junior season with the Wolfpack coupled with the ascension of a pair of high schoolers made him available at No. 3, and the White Sox pounced.
Rodon is 6-foot-4, 235 lbs. and features a slider that Keith Law says could get MLB hitters out today. The knock on him is that, while his fastball is also graded as above-average, he doesn't have a plus-third pitch. He worked on a changeup this past season at NC State, and one would think the White Sox will focus on having him develop that pitch and others before he's big league ready.
Rodon's availability at No. 3 was unknown until the Miami Marlins made their selection at No. 2. While most experts correctly predicted Brady Aiken would go No. 1 to the Houston Astros, the Marlins' situation was in flux, with most draft experts pegging either Rodon or prep bat Alex Jackson at No. 2. When the Marlins went with the guy most expected the White Sox to draft in Tyler Kolek, it became a foregone conclusion.
Rick Hahn and Co. shed their recent trends of avoiding Scott Boras clients with the selection. One would assume he'll command top dollar, but the White Sox have the third highest draft pool in the league this season and could potentially go above slot ($5.7 million) in order to come to terms with Rodon. Watching the negotiations play out over the next month should be interesting, to say the least.
Some draft experts peg Rodon as potentially being Major League ready as soon as next season. While that may be an optimistic point of view, the White Sox likely view him as being able to join Chris Sale and Jose Quintana sooner rather than later.
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