White Sox infielder Tyler Saladino has had a solid season batting .282 with eight home runs and 38 RBIs. Does his performance make Brett Lawrie expendable this offseason?
The Chicago White Sox have a lot of questions heading into this offseason. One question is who plays second base next season? Tyler Saladino has played 41 games at second base this season. Brett Lawrie went down with a knee injury on July 21 and hasn’t returned. After a good showing by Saladino, the White Sox have to decide if this makes Lawrie expendable.
Now, Lawrie was playing very well before he went down with injury. He was batting .248 with 12 home runs and 36 RBIs. He also played very good defense at second base. Something Saladino showed he could do as well. With upgrades needed at other positions, it really doesn’t make sense for the White Sox to keep both guys, but in a perfect world, they would.
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Lawrie is a solid option at second base, but Saladino has shown he can play everyday, an at a high level. One issue that may lead to Lawrie’s exit from Chicago, is the fact he is arbitration eligible this offseason. Saladino also will be a free agent after this season, but he could be signed at a lower cost than Lawrie.
The White Sox could use these savings to spend more in free agency. It wouldn’t be much, maybe around $3 million but anything helps. It’s important this team bring in some guys that can help improve the team. Lawrie made $4.1 million this year while Saladino made $513,000.
If you look at both guys side-by-side, they are similar in age. It makes for comparison very easy. Both have a lot of baseball ahead of them. The front office just needs to decide who is the best fit at second base for the long term.
I don’t think they can go wrong because either guy would be a great option. For me, it would come down to money. If the White Sox are looking to save some money, Saladino would be a great option. He has played very well and could be a bargain.
Making a decision like this is difficult. Both guys definitely are solid options. But I really don’t think this is a decision that the front office could screw up. The only way they could screw this up would be letting both guys walk and starting fresh with someone new. Let’s hope one of these guys is playing second base for the White Sox next season.