White Sox: Is Carlos Gonzalez A Good Outfield Free Agent Option?
White Sox likely won’t spend big during upcoming offseason, but could a former All-Star outfielder make sense for a rebuilding team in 2018?
The Chicago White Sox aren’t expected to make many major signings or trades this upcoming offseason, but one player they could target over the next few months could be Carlos Gonzalez. Gonzalez will be a free agent and could fit as a veteran outfielder for the Sox.
With the Sox currently rebuilding, they will need another outfielder to go along with Avisail Garcia and either Adam Engel or Charlie Tilson next season. Gonzalez struggled to start the 2017 season with the Colorado Rockies but finished strongly to help his team reach the postseason for the first time since 2009.
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Gonzalez isn’t the player he once was when he boasted a .336/.376/.598 slash line in 2010, but he gives the Sox a much-needed left-handed bat in the lineup. The 31-year-old outfielder hit .262/.339/.423 for the Rockies this past season. Although his .262 average wasn’t elite, it was much better than where he was hitting to start the 2017 season.
At the end of May, Gonzalez was hitting just .237 with four home runs and 17 RBIs for the Rockies. He was able to improve his hitting tremendously with an impressive end to his season. In August, Gonzalez hit .279/.333/.419 with two home runs and 15 RBIs. In September, when the Rockies needed him the most, Gonzalez hit .377/.484/.766 with an 1.250 OPS and six home runs to go along with 16 RBIs.
The Sox could afford to take a chance on Gonzalez by signing him to a one-year deal. This could also help the team if they’re able to trade him near the trading dealing in 2018. If Gonzalez did sign with the Sox, he could play in left field. He hasn’t played in left field on a consistent basis since the 2014 season when he appeared in 48 games at that position.
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There’s no guarantee that Gonzalez will hit the open market this offseason as he could very well be resigned by the Rockies. However, if he does become a free agent, it would make sense for the Sox to target the veteran outfielder. If the Sox are to have any chance of reaching the postseason next year, having an All-Star veteran outfielder could certainly help their chances of ending their playoff drought.