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Septimo is latest youngster to join White Sox bullpen

The SportsXchange

The Chicago White Sox continued showing fight on the field, coming back against New York thanks to a three-run homer from Dayan Viciedo in the ninth, but also getting younger in the bullpen with their latest call-up.

Prior to the 4-3 comeback win at Yankee Stadium, lefty Leyson Septimo became the latest rookie to join the Sox pitching staff when the southpaw had his contract purchased from Class AAA Charlotte to take Will Ohman's spot on the roster.

Over 21 relief appearances for the Knights, Septimo, 26, posted a 2-1 record with a 1.48 ERA and 39 strikeouts in 30 1/3 innings. Opposing hitters produced a .135 average against Septimo, with a .095 against (4-for-42) for left-handed hitters.

"The biggest difference was when I was in Charlotte, I wasn't trying to throw hard all the time, and (I was) just (trying to) make pitches," Septimo said through a translator. "When I did need to throw hard, I did, but it wasn't like every pitch I was trying to throw hard."

According to pitching coach Don Cooper, Septimo caught the eye of the staff back in the spring, and then did very little to tarnish his star in Class AAA.

"He had a pretty good spring training and has a good lefty arm," Cooper. "He worked on all the stuff we talked about and had some success."

Cooper and manager Robin Ventura met briefly before the move and decided the rookie would best be served as a lefty specialist and an innings eater late in games for mop-up duty.

"(General manager) Kenny (Williams) came in, and it was something that he wanted to make that move," Ventura said. "It was hard finding spots for him and getting him in there, and more of the reports were we wanted to get a guy like Septimo in there who has had more success against lefties."

As far as the rookies now in the bullpen, Septimo joins fellow rookies Addison Reed, Nate Jones, Hector Santiago, Dylan Axelrod and Jose Quintana. Basically, the pressure stays on Cooper to get the rookies acclimated.

"It's kind of like, in some ways, a very instructional setting. It's fun," Cooper said. "It's an awful lot of fun seeing them go out there when they do well and succeed. It's not totally frustrating to me when they don't.

"Everything they do is looked at and watched and tried to be monitored and make sure we give them the best chance to stay healthy and strong. We want them to go out healthy, strong until we sprint across the finish line, not crawl across it."

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