La Russa expects prospect Romy González will ‘impress'


Romy González knew something was up when Triple-A Charlotte manager Wes Helms called him into his office and the door was closed.

It was never closed.

The Triple-A coaching staff was inside, ready to break the news that the Chicago White Sox were calling González up to the big leagues.

“Such a surreal feeling,” González said Wednesday, sitting in the home dugout at Guaranteed Rate Field, surrounded by reporters.

September roster expansion, though not as expansive as in years past, gave the White Sox a chance to call up one of their hottest-hitting prospects on Wednesday. In a flurry of moves, the South Siders placed Tim Anderson on the 10-day injured list, designated Jake Lamb for assignment, activated outfielder Billy Hamilton from the IL, recalled Gavin Sheets from Triple-A and selected González’s contract.

Two weeks ago, González, the White Sox’ 2018 18th-round pick, was playing in Double-A.

“People I've learned to trust in this organization are really high on him,” White Sox manager Tony La Russa said Wednesday. “So, I think we're all going to be really impressed with what we see.

González has only played in nine Triple-A games, but the utility man made quite the impression in that time, going 11-for-32 with three home runs and 10 RBI.

Asked if he thought in Spring Training that he might be in called up to the majors by the end of the year, González said: “I didn't even know I was going to start in Double-A. Getting that opportunity and making the most of it really helped me."

He also didn’t think such a quick rise was impossible for him.

"I didn't take a day off in 2020,” he said. “I kept hitting every day, working out every day, and I had that make-or-break mindset going into the 2021 campaign."

González also had an early introduction to a couple of his future White Sox teammates this year. Outfielder Billy Hamilton has been with Charlotte on a rehab assignment for the past week and a half. Before that, the club sent catcher Yasmani Grandal to Double-A Birmingham on a rehab assignment in mid-August. A week later, they moved him to Charlotte. A couple days after that, González followed.

What did González learn from someone he called, “one of the greatest catchers that's ever played the game?”

Said González: “That it's the same game. Just a different crowd. It's still baseball, no matter where you're playing. Just go out there and have fun. Keep doing what I've been doing, basically."

As for when White Sox fans can expect to see González in action, La Russa suggested González could appear in the starting lineup sometime during the three-game series at Kansas City this weekend.

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