White Sox To Sign Lastings Milledge

The White Sox agreed to sign Lastings Milledge to a minor league deal, the team announced. Milledge will earn $500K in the majors and his deal doesn't include incentives, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). Milledge, 25, has played in parts of five seasons for the Mets, Nationals and Pirates.

The Pirates non-tendered the 2003 first rounder after he hit .277/.332/.380 in 412 plate appearances. He played left and right for the Pirates last year, but before that had spent most of his career in center field. Milledge has a below-average -8.0 UZR/150 on defense in his career and the only position at which his defensive numbers are above-average is left field.

The White Sox lost Andruw Jones, last year's fourth outfielder, via free agency. If Milledge has a strong spring, he could make the team and provide manager Ozzie Guillen with depth behind Juan Pierre, Alex Rios and Carlos Quentin.

When MLBTR's Mike Axisa discussed Milledge a month ago, he suggested it would be better to gamble on Milledge than hope that "an aging veteran fights off Father Time for another year."


97 Responses to White Sox To Sign Lastings Milledge Leave a Reply

  1. Love this, hopefully he can make the team, that away when Q goes down we can move him to Center.

    • shysox 4 years ago

      he would just play right if Q gets hurt

    • dro03 4 years ago

      Yeah why would we replace Alex Rios, who’s been an above average CF (+3.3 UZR).

  2. Rick Garcia 4 years ago

    He could be a good 4th OF off the bench for them

  3. $1529282 4 years ago

    Can’t believe it took this long for someone to sign him. Why wouldn’t you? He cleaned up his attitude in Pittsburgh and it’s better to roll the dice on him than some other trash we’ve seen get minor league deals.

    • Shawn Callahan Cook 4 years ago

      I dont know i saw that winter ball fight just a month or two ago…milton bradley light

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        If you saw the video then you saw that he did nothing wrong but defend himself when he was attacked by more than 1 dude. If that were anyone else he would’ve been called “scrappy” or “gritty”. I don’t Mills has had a single incident of being violent.

        • Shawn Callahan Cook 4 years ago

          he was talking smack from second base to the other teams dugout and stole a base while his team was up more than 4 (unwritten baseball rule), so i think he did more than nothing

      • Dogo Hess 4 years ago

        great we can use him when we play the cubs

  4. Smrtbusnisman04 4 years ago

    Good signing by Kenny Williams. Milledge proved that he can hit left-handed pitching consistenly last year. However, he didn’t show alot of power, and I am worried that in a large market, he will return to his old arrogant self when he made his debut back in 2006.

    Last year, he was very competitive and determined to play well in Pittsburgh, and I think he can play well in the Windy City.

  5. dc21892 4 years ago

    Nice move by the White Sox.

  6. Sam 4 years ago

    LOVE this, big fan of his!!!

  7. Giorgi Almonte 4 years ago

    good signing…

  8. Bob George 4 years ago

    Nice move, he’s a good hitter, covers decent ground in the outfield, and Chicago’s OF has many issues. He should make the team and get plenty of playing time as a reserve.

  9. Love love LOVE this move!!! Buh bye lillibridge and hopefully when quentin goes down again this year, we roll the dice on him rather than throw the worthless piece of garbage known as Teahen in RF.

  10. Ian_Smell 4 years ago

    Yesterday I wore my Beavis and Butt-head shirt and it was announced that they were coming back during the summer. Today I’m wearing my Milledge shirt and he signs with the White Sox. I wonder what I should wear tomorrow…

  11. Karkat 4 years ago

    Nice injury insurance for Quentin and definitely not Soriano because he plays for the Cubs, silly me.

    • Soriano? Like the one that plays for the Cubs?

      • foxtown 4 years ago

        Apparently he will be shared with the Cubs. Sharing is caring.

      • Karkat 4 years ago

        Hahahaha, oh wow, I can’t believe I said that. xD

        I wish I could say I meant Rios, but he doesnt even have any injury history. This is what I get for attempting to analyze baseball while tired, I suppose…

    • firealyellon 4 years ago

      large bag of fail here

  12. DaveP 4 years ago

    Before coming to Pittsburgh he had a rep of having a lot of talent but a bad attitude. In Pittsburgh he seemed to have a great attitude but did not display any hint of the 5 tool reputation he had in NY. He also seems to have a low baseball IQ proven almost nightly as he would make dumb base running errors and miss cutoff men. I hope he improves in Chicago but I just don’t see it happening.

    • chetkincaid 4 years ago

      Good coaching and a supportive atmosphere, coupled with being out of the majors for a while can fix that in a hurry.

  13. The Sox have been historically good with turning talented but failed players around. There’s nothing wrong with signing a guy like this, and as a fourth outfielder he will be a decent option if/when Quentin goes down. I’ve actually hoped the Sox would sign this guy for a while, as he’s undoubtedly better than Alejandro de Aza. Might as well try to catch lightning in a bottle, no?
    Not to mention he is under team control through 2013.

    • mrsjohnmiltonrocks 4 years ago

      Maybe the fourth one is the charm……actually, as limited as Milledge has been thus far, his limitations actually fit the White Sox.

      Guillen is a good manager for figuring out what a player can do and that using that. I mean, I always loved the way he used DeWayne Wise. He understood what he was good for. I see the same thing for Milledge.

      They also gave out some stout contracts; it’s nice to fill a hole with a low cost solution.

  14. whitesoxfan424 4 years ago

    Wow, I forgot that he is still so young. It would be nice if he put it all together this year… a lot to ask for, I know.

  15. whitesoxfan424 4 years ago

    I also didn’t realize his batting stats were that good last year.

  16. whitesoxfan424 4 years ago

    How come is URZ is so bad? Is he that bad in the field, bad routes, etc?

    • impliedi 4 years ago

      “How come is URZ is so bad? Is he that bad in the field, bad routes, etc?”

      Yes, he is that bad in the field. And on the basepaths. If you’re looking for a powerless, .270 hitting outfielder that is clumsy on the basepaths and in the field, he’s your guy.

      Obviously, he’s a no-risk signing for Chicago. A lot of us Pirate fans were pulling for him and it was good to see him get rid of the “bad attitude” label. But with Jose Tabata coming up and taking over left, Lastings was handed the starting right field spot on the Pirates and couldn’t hold on to it. That being said, I’ll be rooting for him to be a success and make some improvements in the field.

  17. crunchy1 4 years ago

    Nice, low risk signing for the Sox. Nothing to lose here on a guy who still has some upside. I think he’s going to like playing for a manager like Guillen who will always have his back. Milledge will get a chance to just play and let Ozzie distract everything and everyone else. Something tells me this guy is going to have a nice year, not just make the team, but earn himself some playing time.

  18. Beaned1 4 years ago

    Good signing imo. Milledge is still not polished, but he is consistantly awesome vs left-handed pitching. Over .900 OPS vs lefties. Not a defensive replacement…but good PH and sometimes LF/RF vs lefty pitchers.

  19. Jerry Mandering 4 years ago

    He’s still pretty young, he may never mature, but it’s a solid signing. He’s an exciting player and the White Sox have zero outfield depth.

  20. JST1331 4 years ago

    LOVE LASTINGS MILLEDGE! I have his Nationals shirt and his Pittsburgh shirt, just wish I could of had a phillies shirt.

    • i was in washington the day he was traded to the pirates so i made sure i got a nationals shirt cheap at the stadium before i left

  21. I like this signing, and I think it completes our bench: Teahen (3B,RF), Vizquel (3B,SS,2B), Castro (C), and Milledge (OF).

  22. that was the emptiest .290 I’ve seen in my life. Clueless in left (dont listen to UZR, my eyesight isn’t open to interpretation) and possibly the worst baserunner in the history of America. Prob a decent batch off the bench if you need a single, then again he’ll run you out of an inning shortly thereafter.

    • jb226 4 years ago

      Actually your eyesight is very much open to interpretation. It’s why a stat like UZR, flawed though it might be, exists in the first place.

    • The point of UZR is to show what you don’t realize with you’re eye. If you ask many old baseball guys, Ken Griffey is a better fielder than Andruw Jones. However, what UZR takes into account is that Jones would be easily under fly balls Griffey would have to dive for. Not saying Milledge is a good fielder, but your eyes really do not tell the story at all.

  23. i was referring to the “above average” UZR in left as what not too believe btw

  24. 0vercast 4 years ago

    Nice signing. I bet he’ll be a good fit with the CWS.

  25. Slopeboy 4 years ago

    Could be a good signing for him and the White Sox, as he can really help the team. His history has been that he has talent but lacks any maturity and has a crappy attitude. After playing for three organizations and being non-tendered, the light should have gone on by now. Playing for Ozzie, who treats his players like men will be a benefit to him. Ozzie will let him will play up to his talents and lose the poor attitude or have Guillen eat him for lunch.This could be a break or make signing for the rest of his career, as he’s made the rounds through a few teams in a short time span.

  26. HerbertAnchovy 4 years ago

    Is he bringing his gold cleats?

    • vonhayesdays 4 years ago

      im hoping he cuts another album , then he can bring a gold record too

  27. Heliosphan 4 years ago

    Good move, Kenny Williams. Milledge could really regain value in a weak divison, especially since he’ll get the ABs once Quentin suffers his inevitable injury.

    • Ryan Ward 4 years ago

      doubt it. the sox have teahen who will likely play outfield since he has a bad contract and morel will be at third. viciedo will most likely also get some time in the outfield.

      • evenyoudorn 4 years ago

        i don’t think there are enough spots on the 25-man for what you’re describing. ozzie is a lock for 12 pitchers (at least, depending on injuries and double-headers). that leaves your 9 position starters and 4 on the bench: castro, teahen and vizquel get three of those spots, so lastings is competing for this spot against dayan and probably ‘bridge.

        • Palehose 4 years ago

          I personally don’t even think Viciedo has a chance to crack the squad. If he begins to light it up in the minors he can find his way up during some point in the season via DL stints or demotions. But the Sox will require an outfielder that can play LF and CF and Dayan doesn’t have the experience of being a professional OF yet. So I’d say it’s a defensive Spring battle between Lillibridge, De Aza, and Milledge.

          • evenyoudorn 4 years ago

            i think you’re right, and certainly to start the year. but if viciedo goes down there and rakes in charlotte, by rights he should take teahen’s job. if you look at the awful contract as a sunk cost, you give dayan his spot. equally bad defense and miles more bat. “he’s getting paid a lot” is a terrible reason to play a guy. you’re paying him either way– so why not either release him, trade him for scrap, or send him down?

            you can either pay too much for teahen and play teahen, or pay too much for teahen and play viciedo.

          • Palehose 4 years ago

            If Viciedo can learn to hit RHP, become patient, and play the OF adequately, then he deserves to be on the roster. Otherwise, I believe that Teahen, though he may not have the power, deserves to be on the roster. His defense isn’t pretty, but his numbers have never been atrocious. I’d say it takes a combination of Viciedo making the right strides and raking down in the minors and Teahen struggling in the majors both offensively and defensively to make the switch. The offense should have enough pop to it as it stands. But hey, a team on paper does not equate a team on the field. Dayan’s bat can become very necessary. Plus he’s costing $1.25 mil this season and at least $2.5 mil next season. So it’s not like he doesn’t have a bigger contract, too, right?

      • Heliosphan 4 years ago

        Good point, I forgot about Viciedo.

      • lug 4 years ago

        You are 100% correct. I am just hoping we can ship Teahen off for a long reliever at this point. I am doubting this at this point unless we just eat it.

    • vonhayesdays 4 years ago

      week division ? sox , tigers and twins oh my

      • Dogo Hess 4 years ago

        CC Sabathia Cliff Lee Zack Greinke Johan Santana 4 cy young winners in the last five years came from ALC

        • vonhayesdays 4 years ago

          No doubt , how is cleveland still so bad , ALC is normally one of the only division where their is a legit shot at three different contenders

          if you look above rdccdr801 said ALC was week and I mispelled weak so maybe that alleviates some confusion

    • Shawn Callahan Cook 4 years ago

      Weak division? did we switch to the NL central in the offseason and i didnt notice?

  28. NatsTown 4 years ago

    Milledge is the definition of a bait player. His youth and former top prospect status will bait a team into signing him with high hopes until he walks on the field and shows why he hasnt been close to living up to the smallest expectations, both offensively and defensively

    • evenyoudorn 4 years ago

      like o’rourke said just below… you speak as if there is any downside to this, or like this contract is guaranteed in any way. this is like putting a nickel in a slot machine.

    • brian310 4 years ago

      worst case scenario…he’s either 4th outfielder or released

    • the kid is 25. a lot of prospects haven’t even seen the bigs at that age. just a thought

  29. Joey Doughnuts 4 years ago

    Good “no risk, high reward” type deal. At $500K, it’s going to be almost impossible for him to not be worth that price.

  30. Wrek305 4 years ago

    He’ll be cut.. he’s one of the worst players in the league.. A rare bad signing from Kenny Williams

    • Palehose 4 years ago

      How is it a bad signing? It’s not even guaranteed. It isn’t like Kenny just signed him to a 2-year/$4.25 mil contract with a $2 mil buyout.

      • Wrek305 4 years ago

        It’s lasting Millege.. why would anyone want him he’s never done anything good .. for some reason a routine fly ball catch he made was on the top 50 plays of the year.. he’s has the skill of Sorinao or Ryan Braun in the field .. and those are two of the worst if not the worst fielders in baseball.. millage is probably 2nd tied with Soriano.. its a bad signing.. everyone whose a white sox fan will tell you the same thing.

        • Palehose 4 years ago

          Actually, a lot of White Sox fans have not been telling me the same thing. Again, you need to look at the contract. If he doesn’t supply the Sox with anything, he gets cut. If he does supply something, then it’s to their benefit. They’re looking for a fourth outfielder, it’s not a big difference over the course of a season. If Ozzie doesn’t see hustle or an IQ on the basepaths, then there are two viable options in AAA. Let Spring Training play out.

    • Joey Doughnuts 4 years ago

      One of the worst players in the league, yet he hasn’t put up a negative WAR since his rookie season in 2006. Last year he had a 0.7 WAR, which was better than 675 players last year. Yeah, I’m going to have to disagree with you. Now if you want to say, one of the 700 worst players in baseball, then I might agree.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      At worst he can be a corner platoon player vs lefties.

      Career .293/.361/.458 w/ 20 hrs in 553 AB. Add to the fact that it’s a $500k minor lge deal and it makes it even better.

  31. Palehose 4 years ago

    Double-post.

  32. danthebaseballman 4 years ago

    Underated outfielder could be a good backup to Rios, Quentin, and Pierre.

  33. jwsox 4 years ago

    this is a very good no risk possibly high reward signing for the whitesox…The chances are low he even makes the team considering his main competition is Jordan Danks who can run and field. If Danks shows he can hit(he couldnt last year which is why they traded for pierre) he will get the bench job and lastings will be DFA’d and allowed to become a FA…but if Lastings show what he can do with his potential in a hitters park he might win the 4th OF job…decent signing…much better than resigning kotsay

  34. YouCannnnnPutItOnTheBoard 4 years ago

    I like this except for the fact that we have a zillion players who can play both infield and outfield or just outfield. 9 position players (including DH) + 5 SP + 7 bullpen=21 + Castro, Vizquel=23

    Viciedo-1B, 3B, OF
    Teahen-RF, 3B, 1B and he even has 2B experience
    Lillibridge-SS, 2B, OF
    DeAza-OF
    Milledge-OF

    All competing for 2 spots, assuming Morel starts at 3B.

    Right now you gotta give Teahen another shot based on the money they spend (ugh). Lillibridge’s versatility also gives him a head up in my book. Viciedo is going to be a heck of a hitter, but he can continue to hone his craft in Charlotte until we get some demotions and/or injuries. Admittedly, I haven’t seen much of Milledge, but if we can extract some of the talent from his hype machine…well then heck yes. DeAza seems like the #1 call-up for roster expansion given his ability to pinch run effectively. I’d like to see what he can offer for a whole season.

    I think a nice battle will ensue for 3B and the final two bench spots and hopefully they push each other hard enough that it’s a tough decision for Ozzie and the rest of the staff to pick.

    • klassic 4 years ago

      Teahen is a lock based on money. Unfortunately he is below average at all the positions you listed him for. Viciedo is gonna be in Charlotte unless he is unbelievable in the outfield this spring. Problem is he has lots of power, but no plate discipline. I am pretty sure DeAza is out of options. So you can’t just send him down. I would rather see Milledge over DeAza or Lillibridge. I don’t think either are very good. Even if Milledge starts the year in the minors it is not a bad signing. We need some outfield depth in case of injuries. Danks and Mitchell are not ready for the majors yet.

      • LongTimeFan1 4 years ago

        Neither is Milledge. He lacks baseball instincts, and isn’t good player. His game has barely improved since his Mets debut especially in the outfield taking bad routes, especially to balls hit behind him. To White Sox fans, don’t be fooled by good soundbites that don’t translate into the maturity and focus needed on the field to succeed.

        • lug 4 years ago

          he is of course 25, which is about average age for the very first time a player gets a cup of coffee. Most Sox fans I hang out with do not get fooled by soundbites. He has improved a little his numbers have shown. White Sox did not bring him in to hit in the 3 hole. He is an intriguing prospect who himself has to realize it is time to put it together or maybe his time in baseball will become a memory.

  35. danthebaseballman 4 years ago

    Yeah, Morel should get the starting 3B job unless teahen is spectacular in spring training. I still think Teahen will get some playing time at 1B, and RF.

  36. Richard Hood 4 years ago

    The question I have is does the White Sox now control lasting Milledge till 2014 since he wasn’t through arbitration yet?

  37. whitesoxfan424 4 years ago

    Not too different from Quentin. Only Milldge is several million cheaper.

  38. dc21892 4 years ago

    Well then. You should be on “Americas Most Wanted”

  39. Lastings 4 years ago

    He did manage to hit 14 in a season in which he sustained an injury that kept him out for a month. 14 home runs is nothing to glorify, but it’s also nothing to sneeze at especially when it was in a pitchers’ park and now he is playing (or hopes to play) in a hitters’ park. He has the capabilities, he just has to take advantage of the opportunities, otherwise they will run it.

  40. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    jeesh.

  41. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    I guess he thinks all corner OF’ers look alike.

  42. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    I wanted Milledge over Jones but just didn’t happen. I’m dissapointed that the Yanks didn’t take a chance on him, especially if he was content with a minor league contract. Not to say that one Black player can automatically help another, or even that it’s his responsibility, but I think he may have had some good older role models in CC, Grandy and Jeter.

  43. Lastings 4 years ago

    Grandy is basically the left handed Milledge with some pop and a better glove. Both are young, both had high expectations that both really have yet to live up to.

  44. Tko11 4 years ago

    Do you remember how he conducted himself the first time around in ny?

  45. metsman 4 years ago

    rim shot! nice

  46. Palehose 4 years ago

    Defensively yes. Quentin earns his money with his power and RBI’s, though.

  47. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    What? A career .822 OPS for a CF is nothing to sneeze at. In contrast, Carlos Beltran has a career .853 OPS and Torii Hunter a career .805. He also has the highest UZR over the last 5 years (2006-2010) among CF at 19.8 and the 4th highest overall WAR as well.

  48. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    Yeah….5 years ago when he came up at the age 21 and was a pampered rookie who had never struggled and was probably pampered as an athlete from age 16 on? Yeah. That kid? Even then what did he do other than have a chip on his shoulder and walked around like his poop didn’t stink? I’m sure he’s matured some since then.

  49. dude. why do you talkin in the third person about yourself? is that suppose to be part of your egotistical immature persona you were supposed to have turned around?

  50. Tko11 4 years ago

    Yeah the kid who hit a double in the winter league and bragged about it which ended in a fight… “Lastings Milledge involved in big team fight in winter ball. Venezuelan friend says: Heated game. After he doubled in 4th, he made like he was throwing grenade to his dugout. Other team didn’t like. Hit him in 7th. Then he took 2B. Other team went after him. BOOM-Big Fight.” -Adam Rubin Tweet
    As much as you want to believe he matured…he simply didnt.

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