Chicago White Sox: Season preview of infielders
If anyone on the White Sox does not need an introduction, it is José Abreu.
Six years ago, the White Sox signed a first baseman from Cuba to replace the legend Paul Konerko. For 27-year-old Abreu, it is understandable to find this intimidating, it was a large task to handle. But fortunately for everyone, Abreu won the Rookie of the Year, earned a Silver Slugger, earned an All-Star selection and finished fourth in MVP voting.
Today, Abreu remains as the team’s anchor in the middle of the lineup. With 179 home runs in his six years at the professional level, it is safe to say the fans like him as that anchor. And after his highly-spoken comments about this team and this city, it is safe to say he likes it here too.
Abreu has very publicly stated his interest in staying in Chicago going as far as saying he will sign himself. Despite it not the best negotiation tactic, he decided to forego free agency as he accepted the qualifying offer. But after getting that out of the way, he and the White Sox agreed to an extension locking him in for the next three years.
There is little to say about Abreu that already has not already been said. He is a lock to record 30 plus home runs. And as the reigning AL RBI king, driving in 123 last season, it is almost guaranteed he will drive in at least 95 RBI.
There are concerns about his age in relation to his ability to play at first base. Before the offseason started, there were rumors about placing Abreu at DH and potentially moving Zack Collins to first. While he was expressing his interest in staying in Chicago, he was expressing his disinterest in playing DH. He has said that he will do whatever the team asks him in order to win, but he would prefer to stay on the field.
Luckily, there will not be debates on who will hit DH, at least for this season.