White Sox create father-son combo

CHICAGO -- Chicago White Sox bench coach Mark Parent returned from a two-day sabbatical in California where he did a little house cleaning.

Not only did his youngest son Jacob graduate from high school this weekend, his older son Nick was drafted in the 36th round by the White Sox.

“Now my wife has an empty house, so she’s happy,” Parent said. “Everybody’s happy.”

Nick Parent, who just completed his junior year at Cal State Monterey Bay, is planning to sign with the White Sox and forgo his senior year of college.

“He’s going to go to mini-camp,” Mark Parent said. “This is something he’s wanted to do all the time. He can finish school later. He wants to get on with it and do his own thing.”

A corner infielder in college, Nick Parent will head on a new path, one that is extremely familiar to his father.

“He flew into Chicago last Monday for the workout and did pretty good,” Mark Parent said. “He plays first and third but they’re going to see if he can catch. What (assistant player development director) Del Matthews said is, ‘As long as he brings his bat, he’ll be all right.’ He swings it pretty good.”

Mark Parent was a major leaguer catcher for 13 seasons, playing for the Padres, Rangers, Orioles, Cubs, Pirates, Tigers and Phillies in a career that went from 1986-89. He thanked general manager Rick Hahn, owner Jerry Reinsdorf and assistant GM Buddy Bell for giving his son the opportunity to play professional baseball.

So does dad have any advice as the son prepares to put on the catcher’s gear?

“He’ll probably listen more to you than to me,” Mark Parent said. “That’s just the way it works with the father-son dynamic in baseball. I spent a lot of time with him when he was younger on the field coaching him and stuff like that. He’s going to go on to other coaches and they will teach him other things so we’ll see what happens.”

Nick Parent wasn’t the only player drafted by the White Sox over the weekend who has major league bloodlines.

Third-round pick Jacob May, a speedy outfielder, is the grandson of former Reds standout Lee May and the son of Mariners hitting coordinator Lee May Jr.

In the 37th round, the White Sox selected Cody Yount, a first baseman out of Virginia Commonwealth, who is the nephew of Hall of Famer Robin Yount. His father Larry Yount pitched in one major league game, appearing for the Astros in the 1971 season.