Oscar Colás spent a portion of Saturday afternoon at Target Field with Chicago White Sox major-league field coordinator Mike Tosar.
Secondary leads were the focus.
“I was working on how to take off,” Colás said through an interpreter before the game against the Minnesota Twins. “I’m having a little bit of difficulty with my back leg when I’m going to take off.”
Colás continues to learn, adapt and apply at the plate, on the bases and in right field since the Sox recalled him from Triple-A Charlotte on July 4. He’s concentrating on “just being more consistent.”
Colás entered Saturday slashing .200/.237/.264 with four doubles, one home run and nine RBIs in 36 games.
Manager Pedro Grifol has seen some adjustments from the 24-year-old. And he’s still working on other things.
“We have to dial down on the intensity level,” Grifol said Friday. “This might sound a little weird, but he plays the game at a 10 volume. We need to play him at an eight. A 10 makes him a little reckless, especially at the plate.
“Let his ability play as opposed to trying to do more than what he needs to do. If you look at all his metrics I think he’s in the top five or 10% in bat speed. He has all the qualities of becoming a really good hitter. He just needs to temper that down a little and let the game come to him as opposed to try and do too much.”
Grifol used the analogy of a boombox.
“If you have it cranked all the way up to 10, do you hear it good? No, I hear a little crack in it every once in a while, so when you put it at 8 1/2, nine, is that loud enough? Yeah, well that’s where we want you to play, not to where you’re out of control but to where you’re still powerful but in control,” Grifol said. “So it’s a work in progress. He’s developing. He’s developing at this level. It’s hard to do.
“If you look at the charts of how he’s been pitched, it doesn’t matter who he’s facing, he could be facing the same guy every night because they’re pitching him the same way. So until he makes adjustments, they’re not going to make adjustments because they don’t need to. Those are the things we’re talking about. And those are the things he’s going to have to start executing.”
Colás said he has played at that high intensity “ever since I started playing.”
“But here you have to understand that you have to manage the game too,” he said.
He is trying to apply those adjustments well before the first pitch of a game.
“I’ve been trying to put all of that into practice during BP,” Colás said. “That’s the only way you’ll be able to bring that to the game.”
Colás began the season with the Sox but was optioned to Charlotte on May 2. He slashed .293/.358/.508 with nine homers and 29 RBIs in 48 games with the Knights.
Colás entered Saturday 6-for-34 (.176) with two doubles and two RBIs in 11 games since returning to the big leagues.
“The first time (in the majors), I was speeding up the game when what I should do is slow down the game,” Colás said. “And now that’s one of the things I’m trying to do this time.
“I focus a lot on my defense too. If you are unable to produce on the offensive side, you have to be able to be consistent with the glove. I’m always working on both aspects of the game and try to bring whatever I can to help the team.”
Colás is taking a short-term approach when it comes to goals.
“At the end of the season, we’ll see how the results are,” he said. “My goals are daily — just try to be better every day.”
- Before the game, the Sox reinstated reliever Joe Kelly from the 15-day injured list and designated reliever Bryan Shaw for assignment. Kelly had been on the IL since July 5 with right elbow inflammation. Shaw had a 9.39 ERA in six appearances with the Sox.
Andrew Vaughn nearing return
Grifol is hopeful first baseman Andrew Vaughn (bone bruise in his left foot) will be back Tuesday when the Sox begin a two-game series against the Cubs at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Vaughn suffered the injury fouling a ball off his foot in Tuesday’s game against the New York Mets at Citi Field. He did not start Saturday for the fourth straight game.
“The good thing is the other stuff has been ruled out,” Grifol said Saturday. “Now it’s just about pain tolerance, and he’s in a lot of pain. Yesterday he tried and today he’s a little better, he came out here and did some stuff.
“He might come in (Sunday) and be available to pinch hit, but I’m hoping for Tuesday.”