White Sox: Is Brett Lawrie Good Trade Bait For This Season?

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Jul 19, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Chicago White Sox second baseman Brett Lawrie (15) points to the crowd after hitting a solo home run against the Seattle Mariners during the second inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 19, 2016; Seattle, WA, USA; Chicago White Sox second baseman Brett Lawrie (15) points to the crowd after hitting a solo home run against the Seattle Mariners during the second inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports /
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Could White Sox explore trade of Brett Lawrie if he has an impressive first half this upcoming season?

With the Chicago White Sox in rebuild mode, is it possible that Miguel Gonzalez is far from the team’s only trade gem. Infielder Brett Lawrie suffered through an injury plagued 2016, which is common for him, but let’s say he stays healthy until July of 2017? Could the White Sox get a couple of lottery ticket prospects for him this summer?

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Two out of the last three seasons (2015 being the exception) Lawrie failed to appear in 100 games with any team he was with. That is another story for Lawrie, as he has been in three different cities the past three years, going from Toronto to Oakland and finally landing on the south side of Chicago.

Assuming Rick Hahn doesn’t move him before the start of the 2017 season, it will be the first time since 2014 that Lawrie will see familiar faces when he heads to spring training. His inconsistency both on and off the field has been well documented, as Lawrie’s fiery personality has reportedly rubbed many the wrong way.

When discussing Lawrie, many concerns come up but one is not his ability to play baseball. He can do pretty much everything on the field but make consistent contact, as seen by his .261 career average and 153/487 walk to strikeout rate. That means he strikes out three times per every walk, however he has reached double digits in home runs every year since 2012 (career high of 16 in ’15 with OAK-149 GP).

Defensively, Lawrie’s skill set is elite especially when playing second base. His arm is among the best in the game while at second base, considering he has played more MLB games at third base in his career (441 to 172). He also brings solid range to either position, not to mention plus athleticism at either spot. Lawrie will make a handful of errors, partially due to his range and arm which can be seen by his .956 fielding percentage at the hot corner.

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Overall, Lawrie is a valuable player to a major league baseball team assuming he can stay on the field. When in the lineup, he is a bit hot and cold at the plate but there is no denying a players’ skill set who can reach double digits in stolen bases (13) and home runs (11) in the same season (2012-only 125 GP). If the White Sox do indeed want to acquire more pieces for the future, dealing Lawrie makes sense assuming he can stay on the field enough this year.

The question now becomes if he can do just that: stay on the field. Lawrie could have a decent amount of trade value, the question is will he?

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