The White Sox agrees to a contract with the free agent Shortstop Elvis AndrewsESPN’s Jeff Bassan reports (Twitter link). He is expected to join their Major League team in Cleveland tomorrow. John Heyman of the New York Post reported late last night that the Sox They were in talks With Andros, who was Released by Athletics yesterday.
33-year-old Andros (34 next week) is a perfect fit for a White Sox that would be without Tim Anderson Over the next three to five weeks while he continues to rehab Torn ligaments in his left hand. Andrus isn’t a major defender at this point in his career, but he’s naturally more suited to his short stint as a youth Lenin Sosa, who has been handling the position in place of Anderson recently and has managed a slash of just 0.18/.143/.235 in a small sample of 35 board appearances. Andrus’s .237/ .301/ .378 streak isn’t a huge improvement but is just a bit shy of the league average hitter in 2022.
That’s a far cry from Andrus’ .297/ .337/ .471 heyday in 2017, when he also smashed 20 homers and slammed 25 sacks to go along with quality defensive contributions in short order. Plugging a short veteran player with an attack just below the league average into the lineup isn’t something the Sox were able to do just a few days ago, however, they are surely very happy to be able to add Andrus into the fold.
Defensive laps saved Andrus’ mitts are running a dismal -6 runs this season, but the absolute area rating (2.4) and above average (zero/average) are more optimistic. Even if the defense is now slightly below par, Sosa is by reconnaissance reporting a second baseman ill-equipped to handle the short stop, and early returns (-2 DRS, -2 OAA in just 41 rounds) do nothing to suggest otherwise. Andrus should be a more consistent option for the job.
Prior to his release, Andrus was playing the final season of an eight-year, $120 million contract originally signed with the Rangers. The White Sox will owe him the league’s prorated minimum for the remainder of the season, with the A remaining in a bind for the remainder of Andrus’s $14 million salary. That previous contract involved awarding a $15 million player option when Andrus hit 550 appearances – he’s currently at 386 – but that’s a moot point now that he’s been laid off from his previous contract and signed a new one with Chicago. He will be a free agent at the end of the season.
It’s been a frustrating season at Guaranteed Rate Field, with the Sox suffering lengthy absences from key players such as Lance LinAnd the Eloy JimenezAnd the Yasmani Grandal And now Anderson (not to mention shorter periods of IL Louis RobertAnd the Lucas Giolito and others). Things haven’t gone as the front office had imagined when putting together this enviable young core, but Sox has played better ball lately, and despite some early season slack, there are only two games behind the leading Guardians and one game. Of the twins second place. Major League Baseball should be the narrowest three-team race in Major League Baseball, so even if Andrus proves just an incremental upgrade, that marginal improvement could play a pivotal role.
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