4. Yasmani Grandal – C
When healthy, Yasmani Grandal has been amazing for the Chicago White Sox.
The White Sox announced to the world that the rebuild was over when they signed Yasmani Grandal in free agency. Instead of trying to continue adding young talent, the team was clearly trying to win. Adding the best catcher in baseball was a great stepping stone towards that.
It wasn’t easy for Grandal upon his arrival to a new team. Halfway through his first spring training with the Sox, it was cut short due to COVID-19. Then, during the 60 game season, he shared time with James McCann who was also awesome. Grandal had a good year but we knew he could be even better.
In 2021, he came in and produced a lot of runs, got on base at an elite clip, and hit the ball very far. However, his batting average was very bad. That doesn’t mean much, however, because he helps the offense the most by drawing walks and hitting home runs.
He dealt with a bad injury in 2021 as well but when he came back, the power was even more fruitful and the average came up a lot. There were points where he was the best hitter on the entire team. Getting that level of production from your catcher is very nice.
He is perfect in the role of the four-hitter because he hits home runs at a very high pace. With some of the guys batting ahead of him, he should bat in the first inning more often than not which is very good. As the cleanup hitter, he will be put in a great position.
Defensively, he is okay. He is an outstanding pitch framer but he wasn’t awesome at much else on that side of the plate in 2021. With that in mind, you have to remember his knee injury that made things hard. 2022 should be an entirely different story.