White Sox Reportedly in Search of DH Options, Not Interested in Matt Kemp

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 07: Left fielder Matt Kemp
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 07: Left fielder Matt Kemp /

The White Sox are in the market for a DH but there’s no evidence to suggest they have interest in Matt Kemp Jon Heyman writes.

The Chicago White Sox are looking for designated hitter help. However, there’s nothing suggesting they would trade for Matt Kemp Jon Heyman writes. If they go with an internal option, Matt Davidson may have the inside track. The free agent market has been slow so it is still possible they sign someone before spring training.

The Dodgers acquired Kemp in essentially a salary dump with the Atlanta Braves this offseason. When the trade happened many speculated if Kemp would remain in a Dodger uniform. The Sox had interest in Kemp but as Heyman notes, that was long ago. It’s good to see the team not looking to acquire players past their prime, which was a hallmark of one Kenny Williams.

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Furthermore, it may not make financial sense to have someone like Kemp. He’s due to earn $21.5 million in 2018 and 2019. The 33-year-old had a good season with 19 home runs and 64 RBIs while batting .267 in 2017. But He’s not worth the price tag and that’s a lot to pay a DH.

Matt Davidson hit .220 with 26 home runs and 86 RBIs. He is significantly cheaper than the aforementioned Kemp. If Davidson can have similar production and increase hit batting average, he makes a much better option. The team could also look to the outside.

With the slow free agent market, a lot of guys remain unsigned. One of those, Logan Morrison, could easily slide into the DH spot for the White Sox and also spare Jose Abreu at first base. The 30-year-old hit .246 with 38 home runs and 85 RBIs for the Tampa Bay Rays last season. Hahn may be able to get Morrison to sign for less due to the slow offseason.

The risk is Morrison’s 2017 was a breakout season for his career. Prior to that, his best home run total was 23 in 2011. It’s also the only other time he’s hit over 20 home runs. You’re signing him hoping he can duplicate his production in 2018 but what happens if he doesn’t? That’s why the Sox may be wary of offering him a multiyear deal. However, he is a left-handed bat and could find success in hitter-friendly Guaranteed Rate Field.

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The Sox have some time to figure out the DH spot but Davidson may deserve a shot. Another season of development and more playing time could be big for him. He was once a top prospect but has somewhat faltered. 2017 was somewhat of a revelation that maybe this guy has some talent. So it may be worth giving him a shot and see what he can do with another full season at the big-league level. After all, the Sox may not be much good so it will give them a chance to see what guys like Davidson are made of, and let them decide if there’s a future for them in Chicago.