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Viciedo sent down, but Guillen sees 'superstar' potential
By Scot Gregor | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 3/19/2009 12:02 AM

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GLENDALE, Ariz. - The White Sox aren't judging Dayan Viciedo on one mediocre month of spring training.

"I saw more then what we expected," manager Ozzie Guillen said on Wednesday. "This kid is going to be a big-league player and he has a chance to be a superstar in this league."

Alas, Viciedo will have to wait to live up to those lofty expectations after being optioned to Class AAA Charlotte.

Signed by the Sox to a four-year, $10 million contract on Dec. 12 following three strong seasons for Villa Clara in the Cuban League, Viciedo showed flashes of brilliance at times in the Cactus League but was sent packing with a .231 batting average.

Viciedo just turned 20 on March 10, and he had difficulty adapting to the Sox' rigorous training camp.

"We sent him down because that was better for him than playing once a week, once every other day, coming back as a pinch-hitter," Guillen said. "That doesn't do the ballclub any good and that doesn't do him any good. I think this kid has to go out and play every day, get some progress out of that. He has to make an adjustment in this game here in the States. After that, I don't have any doubt in my mind that the potential is there and he should be a superstar in this game."

Guillen said Viciedo can handle playing third base, and he was wrong about the youngster's 5-foot-11, 240-pound frame.

"I think he was a little overweight when we signed him, but that's the way he is," Guillen said. "He's a big kid. It's one thing to be fat, it's one thing to be pretty strong. That's the type of body he has. Besides that, I think the experience he had here, how hard people work here at the big-league level, baseball is not hit the ball and run, hit a home run. There are a lot of things to learn."

More roster cuts: In addition to Dayan Viciedo, the White Sox moved 12 players out of major-league camp Wednesday.

Catcher Cole Armstrong, starting pitcher Kelvin Jimenez and reliever Jon Like were optioned to Class AAA Charlotte. Infielder Brandon Allen and pitchers Jhonny Nunez and Clevelan Santeliz were optioned to Class AA Birmingham.

Pitchers Ryan Braun, Franklyn German and John Van Benschoten, infielder Javier Castillo, catcher Tyler Flowers and outfielder Michael Restovich were reassigned to minor-league camp.

The Sox have 40 players remaining in their major-league camp - 20 pitchers, four catchers, 11 infielders and six outfielders.