Wednesday, April 17, 2024

White Sox Sign Three Time All-Star

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In an out of nowhere move tonight, the White Sox announced that they have signed three time all-star and former Kansas City Royals star Mike Moustakas to a minor league deal and have invited him to Spring Training. This would be exciting if it were 2015, but at this point, Moustakas will be fighting for a bench spot on the 2024 White Sox.

Moustakas will be 35 for a strong majority of the 2024 season. At this point in his career he looks to be a DH, but if he does play in the field, he splits time between first base and third base. He does not offer much defensively, so he could be mainly used as a bench bat or as depth if an injury were to occur.

Last year, splitting time between the Los Angeles Angels and the Colorado Rockies, the former first round pick hit .247 with 12 homeruns and 48 RBIs. These are not horrible offensive stats, but he is likely to be around or the same or worse as he gets older.

This is a bit of an odd signing. Besides being a former Kansas City Royals player, he does not fit what Getz has targeted this off-season. He does not offer much with the glove, as that is something that Chris Getz has heavily targeted in his signings through the off-season.

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However, he is a bit better with the bat than most of the signings this off-season. He could slot in at the end of the bench to give breaks to Moncada, Vaughn, and Eloy. He could also add a veteran presence that is missing in the White Sox clubhouse. He does have a World Series under his belt, so his knowledge on that could be beneficial for many of the guys in the clubhouse.

He will be competing against Danny Mendick, Braden Shewmake, Lenyn Sosa, and Jose Rodriguez for one of the last bench spots. The one thing he has on all of these players is the fact that he has been a successful major league player before, so that could give him a leg up in a Spring Training competition.

At this point, considering where the White Sox stand in 2024, it might be better to give a younger guy a shot instead of Moustakas. The Sox aren’t realistically competing for anything this year, so it would be beneficial to give the younger guys a chance to show what they can do at the major league level, rather than an aging veteran. Regardless, it is a good thing to have as much competition in camp as possible, as it pushes everyone to be the best player they can.

However, I feel as if the White Sox communicated to Moustakas and his camp that he has a good chance to make the roster, as he would likely have no other motivation to sign with the White Sox otherwise. It is unclear at this time if he would accept a minor league demotion if he doesn’t make the roster, but he would be a solid backup if Yoan Moncada were to miss some time.

Regardless, this is an interesting move to say the least. I appreciate the Sox bringing in veteran competition for the younger guys, but if they are taking reps away from younger players, then it could be a problem. I am very curious to see how this all plays out.

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