Born: March 10, 1987
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 215
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
Drafted: 11th Round, 330th Overall, 2008 (White Sox)
How Acquired: Minor League Free Agent
College: Xavier University
Agent: Pro Star Management, Inc.


Leesman didn’t have much success pitching in college, but the White Sox drafted him due to his arm strength.  He throws about 88-92 with very good sink that’s produced high groundball ratios in the minors.  He also throws a slider and change.  Leesman’s control has been erratic and he hasn’t had much of a platoon split in the minors.  His performance in the upper minors has been more serviceable than good, but he got a spot on the White Sox’ 40-man roster anyway.  In fact, Baseball America ranked him in the upper half of the Sox’ top 30 system for several years, probably in part due to the system’s weakness.  He’s been a starter most of the time, a fact that, combined with the lack of platoon splits, means he’s probably not a candidate to be a lefty specialist.  The Pirates signed him to a minor league contract for 2015, with an invitation to major league spring training.

R+:  0-0-1, 0.00 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 5.1 IP, 1.7 BB/9, 10.1 K/9
A:  0-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 4.2 IP, 3.9 BB/9, 9.6 K/9

After signing late, Leesman got into three games.

A:  13-5-0, 3.08 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 157.2 IP, 3.3 BB/9, 6.7 K/9

Leesman had just a decent season in low A, which isn’t especially advanced for a player who was drafted out of college the previous year.  Opponents hit .275 against him and he didn’t miss a lot of bats.  After the season, Baseball America ranked him 27th in a weak White Sox system.

A+:  9-4-0, 5.10 ERA, 1.68 WHIP, 84.2 IP, 4.7 BB/9, 4.1 K/9
AA:  5-2-0, 2.69 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 63.2 IP, 2.8 BB/9, 7.2 K/9

Leesman had an odd season.  He struggled through 17 starts in high A, allowing opponents to hit .294 against him and walking more than he struck out.  He finished the season, though, with eleven strong starts in AA, including far better walk and K rates, and a .210 opponents’ average.  BA rated him the White Sox’ 11th best prospect after the season.

AA:  10-7-0, 4.03 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 152.0 IP, 4.9 BB/9, 6.7 K/9

Chicago sent Leesman back to AA for the season and he put up mediocre numbers.  The White Sox added him to the 40-man roster after the season.  BA ranked him 14th in the Sox’ system.

AAA:  12-10-0, 2.47 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 135.0 IP, 3.5 BB/9, 6.9 K/9 

The Sox sent Leesman to AAA for the year.  His ERA there was very good, but his other numbers were just fair.  BA ranked him 11th among White Sox prospects.

AAA:  4-3-0, 3.87 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 88.1 IP, 4.2 BB/9, 7.9 K/9
MLB:  0-0-0, 7.04 ERA, 2.09 WHIP, 15.1 IP, 9.4 BB/9, 7.6 K/9

Leesman missed the early part of the season as he was recovering from meniscus surgery.  The White Sox released him in mid-April, then signed him to a minor league contract.  He joined their AAA team in late May and spent most of the season there, again putting up only fair numbers.  The Sox called him up for one start in early August, then brought him back up in September and he made seven relief appearances.  He had trouble throwing strikes during his time in the majors.

R:  0-0-0, 4.91 ERA, 1.91 WHIP, 3.2 IP, 4.9 BB/9, 9.8 K/9
AAA:  2-6-0, 4.10 ERA, 1.49 WHIP, 68.0 IP, 4.2 BB/9, 8.7 K/9
MLB:  0-1-0, 20.25 ERA, 3.75 WHIP, 2.2 IP, 3.4 BB/9, 0.0 K/9

Chicago sent Leesman to AAA to start the season, then called him up for one late April start that went badly.  He spent most of the rest of the year in AAA, but missed much of June and July with an injury.  When he pitched in AAA, he again had just decent numbers.  The White Sox released him in August.

AAA:  4-1-0, 3.74 ERA, 1.57 WHIP, 21.2 IP, 5.8 BB/9, 6.6 K/9

Leesman opened the season in the Indianapolis rotation.  He didn’t pitch especially well, as he had trouble throwing strikes.  At the end of May he went out with shoulder tightness and did not return.

Leesman will be a free agent again after the season.

2015: Minor league contract
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2008
MLB Debut: 8/9/2013
MiLB FA Eligible: 2015
MLB FA Eligible: 2021
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: 7/21/2008
Options Remaining: 2 (USED:  2012, 2014)
MLB Service Time: 0.032
June 8, 2005: Drafted in the 40th round, 1213th overall, by the Minnesota Twins.
June 6, 2008:
Drafted in the 11th round, 330th overall, by the Chicago White Sox; signed on August 16.
November 18, 2011:
Contract purchased by the Chicago White Sox.
April 14, 2013: Designated for assignment by the Chicago White Sox.
April 17, 2013: Released by the Chicago White Sox.
April 23, 2013: Signed as a minor league free agent with the Chicago White Sox.
August 9, 2013: Called up by the Chicago White Sox.
August 16, 2014:  Designated for assignment by the Chicago White Sox; released on August 20.
January 9, 2015:  Signed as a minor league free agent with the Pittsburgh Pirates.