UPDATE (4:15 PM CT): The White Sox and shortstop Paul DeJong have agreed on a one-year deal, pending a physical.
The White Sox may be close to finding their starting shortstop in 2024.
According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the White Sox are close to signing a major league deal with middle infielder Paul DeJong. The club has not confirmed the signing at this time.
DeJong, 30, hit .207/.258/.355 with 14 home runs across stints with three teams in 2023 – primarily with the Cardinals. He also had stints with the Blue Jays and Giants, neither lasting for very long. He can play both middle infield positions while serving as a home run threat.
Paul DeJong has fallen a far way from his best days with St. Louis when he posted a .251/.318/.467 slash line from 2017-2019, but he still possesses three qualities important to improving the White Sox:
(1) Stellar defense at SS (18 OAA at SS since 2021; 8th-best in MLB)
(2) A near-8% walk rate for his career (Would’ve been top 5 for White Sox hitters in 2023)
(3) An ability to hit home runs (14.5% HR/FB rate for his career; 13.5% in 2023)
This deal would give DeJong a fresh start with a clear path to playing time until Colson Montgomery is deemed ready to take the reins for the future. Plus, should Montgomery check all the boxes sometime in 2023, DeJong would be able to shift over to 2B and provide the White Sox with further middle infield depth, where he has graded out as average in limited chances.
We will provide more information as details become available about this deal.
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