3 White Sox players most likely to replace Jose Abreu in 2023

Detroit Tigers v Chicago White Sox
Detroit Tigers v Chicago White Sox / Quinn Harris/GettyImages

Jose Abreu is gone to the Houston Astros. He decided not to return to the Chicago White Sox organization after a frustrating 2022 season that saw them become the most disappointing team in the entire league.

Now, Abreu joins the defending World Series champions as they try to repeat and win their third title since 2017. It is an organization that has some demons but they are always right there in contention.

Abreu is looking for his first as he was unable to do so with the White Sox for all these years. That is probably a big reason why he decided to leave as his now-former team isn't that serious about winning.

It is a bit sad that things have gone down like this but the realities are the realities. Now, the White Sox have to try and fill in for him in multiple different ways.

There are a few players that are going to try and replace his production offensively and a few that can play first base on the defensive side. Some are more likely than others but there are three that stick out as the most likely to get the nod.

The Chicago White Sox need one of these players to step up in 2023.

1. Andrew Vaughn

Andrew Vaughn is the obvious answer right now. He is a natural first baseman that has been waiting to play this position for a long time. He was never going to play over Jose Abreu but playing left field was never it for him either.

He will become incredibly more valuable playing where he is comfortable defensively. He also is a very good developing hitter with a high ceiling. He led the White Sox (with fewer games played than a lot of players) with 17 home runs last year and is only going to get better.

If Vaughn's development continues down the right path, the White Sox might have another great first baseman on their hands. In order for that to happen, however, they need to handle him with care as he tries to replace a White Sox all-time great.

2. Gavin Sheets

Gavin Sheets might not have the same ceiling as Andrew Vaughn but he can be a dangerous power hitter in the league. He is especially valuable because he is left-handed and the White Sox don't have a lot of those.

Sheets, like Vaughn, is a natural first baseman that has been forced to mostly play in the outfield. Also like Vaughn, he has been mostly bad at it despite giving it his all. Jose Abreu's departure should lead to some good opportunities for Sheets as long as he isn't traded.

3. Yasmani Grandal

If someone not named Sheets or Vaughn were not the starting first-baseman on any particular day, it is probably Yasmani Grandal. He is, of course, the primary catcher on the roster but he has played a few games at first in his White Sox tenure.

That mostly happens so that they can get his bat in the game but his bat was mostly bad in 2022. If he can get back to form a little bit in 2023 where they want his bat in the starting lineup on days away from catching, first base would be the position for him.

Grandal will also probably be a DH from time to time so you'd like to see him pick up some of the slack with his bat. He is a top candidate in all of baseball for bounce-back player of the year. With Grandal being the highest-paid player in team history, it would be nice to see for him.

The Chicago White Sox may or may not be a good team in 2023. There are a lot of question marks after the disappointing 2022 season which makes sense. If whoever replaces Jose Abreu the most can have a good year, the team could get right back in contention for the division.

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