Kyle Von Ruden arrived home
He was preparing to be the team’s starting pitcher Tuesday night until he got a call from T-Bolts manager Ron Biga. Von Ruden had just been signed by the White Sox.
It’s a dream come true,” Von Ruden said. “Emotions were flying. It’s an amazing feeling to get a chance to do something that not many people get to do. Getting this opportunity is what we’re all here for. I’m grateful.
“I immediately called my dad and I’ve never heard him happier.”
He’d made big improvements from his rookie season last year, when he went 1-7 with a 4.41 ERA after joining Windy City fresh off finishing his senior year at Hawaii.
“We knew his numbers last year weren’t indicative of what he could do,” Biga said. “He’d thrown a lot of innings at Hawaii. He came in this year and threw well. He throws four pitches for strikes. The White Sox thought he was a good fit.”
Despite the rough start to his pro career, Von Ruden remained confident he’d get a shot.
After allowing three runs in 6 2/3 innings in his season debut against Schaumburg, Von Ruden did not surrender a run over his next two starts. He tossed eight shutout innings in a May 27 win over Gateway.
“I felt good my first start and then the second start, I started developing more of a cut fastball,” he said. “The game against Gateway was a huge taking-off point, and it all snowballed from there.”
Von Ruden is the first T-Bolts player to be signed by an affiliated club during the season since pitcher Zak Wasserman was picked up by the Arizona Diamondbacks on May 16, 2016.
Catcher Corey Bass signed with the Florida Marlins in the offseason after playing with Windy City last summer.
Von Ruden’s departure left the T-Bolts unsure of who would be the starting pitcher until just a few hours before Tuesday’s game. Jake Fisher, scheduled to start Wednesday, was moved up a day and started on three days of rest.
“(Wednesday) is more of an issue now,” Biga said. “We have some guys in mind. We’ll figure it out. That’s the business. This is what we’re shooting for with all these guys.”
Von Ruden will head to Arizona for a minicamp and expects to soon join the Great Falls Voyagers in the advanced-rookie Pioneer League.
“There’s no holding back now,” Von Ruden said. “This is what I’ve been waiting for