White Sox outfielder must follow up impressive All-Star 2017 season with a solid 2018 for the team as they enter another rebuilding year.
Avisail Garcia had a breakout 2017 season for the Chicago White Sox. After having mediocre results before 2017, Garcia was able to have his best season in a Sox uniform last year and also appeared in his first All-Star Game.
As Garcia enters the 2018 season, he should be slated as the team’s starting right fielder when the Sox begin the season on Mar. 29 against Kansas City. However, Garcia will need to follow up an impressive 2017 with a solid 2018 for the Sox.
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This will be an important year for Garcia as the Sox continue their current rebuilding efforts. At 26 years old, Garcia is still young enough to be part of the team’s future. But, he only has two years remaining of team control and the Sox have many talented outfield prospects in the minor leagues.
Garcia could be with a different team when the Sox are ready to contend. If he has a strong 2018 season, he could very well become trade bait near the trading deadline.
Last season, Garcia hit a career-high .330 with 18 home runs and 80 RBIs. He also played well defensively in right field as he had a dWAR of -0.4. This might not be a great a dWAR, but it’s the lowest for Garcia in his career where he appeared in more than 130 games at one position.
The Sox won’t have many expectations other than the development of their prospects this upcoming season. If they’re able to surprise many and contend, Garcia will be a major reason for that. Garcia still has potential to get better, but if he struggles this year, he could find himself out of the team’s future plans. It was nice to see Garcia realize his potential in 2017, now it’s up to him to follow that up with another quality year on the South Side.