Could Nick Madrigal start season with Chicago White Sox?

Joshua Finkelstein
(Photo by Ron Vesely/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ron Vesely/Getty Images) /
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The Chicago White Sox might end up calling up a certain player on Opening Day that initially wouldn’t have been able to join them until later.

The Chicago White Sox might get to start their baseball season in the near future which has many fans excited. However, there might be some new rules to focus on this season.

As detailed by Jeff Passan of ESPN, the owners have already agreed to a proposal that would allow a second spring training to begin in June and the regular season to start July 4 weekend.

Obviously, this proposal still needs to be approved by the MLBPA, which could be an issue given the massive pay cuts under discussion that Blake Snell criticized heavily.

One of the new rules could present an interesting scenario for the Chicago White Sox, though, with 30-man rosters and 20-man taxi squads being part of this proposal.

The latter idea is due to the expectation there won’t be a minor league season this year, meaning teams would have to use players on that to give them playing time.

With that being the case, maybe the Chicago White Sox will end up starting the year with Nick Madrigal after all.

For starters, there is no scenario that I can envision, besides his health, that he wouldn’t be one of the 50 players available regularly this season.

The question is whether or not the team will just use him as the team’s regular second baseman now that there are no minor leagues this year.

In Spring Training, Madrigal simply didn’t impress which made it clear he wasn’t going to be on the Opening Day roster. The underlying factor of service-time manipulation was also there.

I also wondered about a month ago whether or not the season’s delayed start would ultimately be the reason Madrigal didn’t make his MLB debut in 2020.

Now, though, the game has changed and if the team wants to really give Madrigal any sort of game experience, it’s only going to come at the major league level.

If the season started as planned in late March, Leury Garcia and Danny Mendick would’ve been splitting time at the position until Madrigal was ready.

Neither option was a particularly strong solution as both were just viewed as stopgaps.

Giving Madrigal playing time at the keystone only makes sense now, as he clearly has the most future upside of the three and could actually help the team eclipse their projections, while the other two would likely deliver league average or worse production.

It would also allow Garcia to return to the super-utility role he is much better suited for.

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The Chicago White Sox should certainly only let Nick Madrigal play as much as he can prove he deserves the second base job, but it makes sense to have him start the year in the South Side this season.

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