Wednesday, February 02, 2011

White Sox Coach Questions Brent Morel's Offense

White Sox hitting coach Greg Walker continues to have doubts about 24-year-old prospect Brent Morel's readiness to win the starting third baseman's job out of spring training.

Returning to his Chicago home from a three-week workout of various players in Florida and California, Walker told ESPN Radio 1000 that Morel, who hails from Bakersfield, has ability around the bag but has "some misses" when he hits because he "comes up out of his swing."

"He's always hit," Walker said of the former Cal-Poly standout. "The thing we have to be careful about is his swing. Does he have some holes in there that pitchers can exploit?"

After the White Sox took Morel in the first round of the 2008 draft, he hit .326 at Double A Birmingham, then .300 in 60 games for Triple A Charlotte, where his defensive play reminded observers of former White Sox third baseman Joe Crede.

In a brief September call up, Morel hit a home run in his first major league at-bat, though he struggled overall.

"I think he's going to be ready to go," said Walker, but hinted that he may have to hold off journeyman Mark Teahen if Morel expects to win the starting third baseman's job on opening day.