White Sox GM Rick Hahn addressed the situation of pending free agent first baseman Jose Abreu, as Scott Merkin of MLB.com tweets. It seems the organization may not be optimistic of reaching a deal to keep Abreu from the open market. “Never say never,” says Hahn, “but we prefer to handle our business in the offseason.” Perhaps there’s still some room for talks in camp, but that comment certainly did not strike a tone that suggests it’s seen as a particularly likely outcome.
- Key White Sox youngster Yoan Moncada, meanwhile, appears to be slated to move to third base, as Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Had the team landed a certain prominent free agent target, those plans might have changed, but it now seems reasonably likely that the club will work with its existing infield mix. Yolmer Sanchez is seemingly slated to shift back to second base, with Tim Anderson staying at shortstop. Moncada says he’s happy to move to the hot corner. “I like that position, and with more repetitions I will feel even better,” he said. “I’m just here to help the team in whatever capacity they give me.”
- With an outfield mix that hardly inspires much confidence, the Indians could certainly stand to receive a comeback effort from former top prospect Bradley Zimmer. As Mandy Bell of MLB.com reports, the 26-year-old appears to be making solid progress in his efforts to return from shoulder surgery. Right now, he’s just starting to take cuts in the cage, so there’s still a ways to go. When last we checked in, Zimmer indicated he was hopeful of landing on the earlier side of the eight-to-twelve-month recovery timeframe he was originally given when he went under the knife last July. If he stays on an upward trajectory, perhaps a reasonably early-season return is possible. Of course, Zimmer will be looking not only to come back from the injury but also a less-than-productive start to his MLB career at the plate.
- The Tigers intend to focus on getting Kaleb Cowart up to speed as a pitcher, skipper Ron Gardenhire told reporters including Chris McCosky of the Detroit News. That would appear to mean a reduction in his infield reps, though as McCosky tweeted today, Cowart was taking part in drills this morning. However things shake out in camp, Gardenhire says, pitching is the “main reason we brought [Cowart] in.” It’s a bit difficult to imagine Cowart cracking the Opening Day roster as a hurler — as the article explains, unsurprisingly, there’s plenty of rust — but he could still emerge as an option if he’s able to find a groove.