The first thing that comes to mind when Harold Baines gets enshrined into the Hall of Fame on July 21 is the speech. The over/under on minutes it will last might be the talk of Cooperstown.
Baines said he already has it prepared, and it will last about 10 minutes.
“I think one guy said, ‘Thank you’ and sat down. I’ll definitely beat that one,” Baines said Tuesday at Guaranteed Rate Field. “It might not be much behind that, but I’ll say more than ‘Thank you.’ It will be about others, it won’t be about me.”
Baines played 22 seasons with the Sox (1980-89, ’96-97, 2000-01), Rangers, A’s, Orioles and Indians, batting .289 (2,866-for-9,908) with 384 homers, 488 doubles and 1,628 RBI.
“It’s going to be emotional for a lot of people just because it’s Harold Baines,” said Ozzie Guillen, Baines’ former teammate. “Harold Baines was always cool, man. Harold Baines was a White Sox when the White Sox were nothing.
“I think Frank [Thomas] was a better hitter than Harold. Clutch? Nobody was better than Harold Baines in this organization.”
Slow goes it for Collins
Zack Collins will catch Ross Detwiler in the nightcap of the day-night doubleheader after All-Star James McCann catches Dylan Cease on Wednesday afternoon. It will be Collins’ 14th game in uniform since getting called up from Class AAA Charlotte, but only his third catching.
The jury is still out on whether Collins, a first-round draft choice in 2016 who has been working during pregame at first base almost every day, has a future at catcher. During his time as the backup with Welington Castillo (oblique strain) on the injured list, the Sox are keeping Collins close to McCann.
“I’m learning more now than I ever have just because I’m not playing,” Collins said. “I’m not really focused every single day on getting in the lineup and going out there and competing. I’m asking a lot of questions.”
Collins is 1-for-16 at the plate with eight strikeouts.
Moment of silence for Skaggs
The Sox observed a moment of silence in honor of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs before the postponed game against the Tigers.
Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito, who grew up with Skaggs in Santa Monica, California, posted a photo of himself with Skaggs and others along with an impassioned tribute to Skaggs on Instagram. “You radiated positivity and confidence in a way that I’ve always tried to emulate, and everyone who knows you can attest to the way you immediately lit up a room.
“Please keep [wife] Carli and family in your thoughts and prayers. It’s unimaginable what they are going through right now.”
The Sox signed Cuban shortstop Yolbert Sanchez, infielder Elijah Tatis, third baseman Wilfred Veras and right-handers Christian Mena and Erick Bello on the first day of the international signing period. Tatis is the younger brother of Fernando Tatis Jr., the Padres star rookie shortstop whom the Sox traded for James Shields in 2015.
Second baseman Nick Madrigal and outfielder Steele Walker shared Sox minor-league player of the month honors, while right-hander Kade McClure was named pitcher of the month by Chicago-area media.