Say hey, baseball: Melky Cabrera makes the White Sox legit

In Monday’s baseball, we find Melky Cabrera on the White Sox, Cespedes’ fire-breathing car, and Brett Lawrie getting pizza.

Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day, and trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk isn’t easy. It’s OK, though, we’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end.

★★★

The White Sox added a few key pieces this winter by signing David Robertson to close, Adam LaRoche to DH, and trading for Jeff Samardzija to slot in behind Chris Sale in the rotation, but they still had at least one too many holes in the lineup to be taken very seriously. They took care of that by handing $42 million over three years to free agent Melky Cabrera, one of the top hitters available this winter, which has the added benefit of removing Dayan Vicieodo’s lifeless bat from the lineup.

Cabrera is just 30, and even though he has a 126 OPS+ over the last four years, he settled for a deal that looks like a bargain for the White Sox. Cabrera has been great almost without interruption since breaking out with the Royals in 2011 — in 2013, a benign tumor in his spine was more than enough of an excuse for a down year — and now the White Sox have finished off their entire offseason checklist. Avisail Garcia will be back to take over in right field, the other corner outfield spot Chicago got nothing out of in 2014, and suddenly the middle of the White Sox order has Cabrera, Jose Abreu, and LaRoche in it.

With Matt Kemp (almost) traded, Yoenis Cespedes on the Tigers, and Cabrera signed, the outfield market has thinned in a hurry. Justin Upton could still be traded, but that would still leave quite a few teams without the major outfield upgrade they were hoping for. Looking at you, Mariners. The Blue Jays, Cabrera’s previous team, could probably use an outfielder as well, but hey, at least they got a first-round compensation pick for losing Melky, which sort of replaces the one they spent to bring Russell Martin aboard.

December 15, 2014 by : Posted in Uncategorized No Comments

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