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White Sox release veterans Moustakas, Pillar, and Chavez

by Joe Binder

The White Sox continue to trim their roster ahead of Opening Day.

In a press release on Friday, the team announced that infielder Mike Moustakas and outfielder Kevin Pillar were both released from their contracts. An additional update on Saturday revealed that reliever Jesse Chavez will also not be making the team.

Chavez, 40, inked a minor league deal last month with hopes of playing one final season before retiring. After seven appearances, the right-hander put up a dismal 11.57 ERA across seven innings. Per Chavez’s status as an XX(B) free agent, the White Sox had until yesterday to add Chavez to their Opening Day roster, or else he could opt out of his deal.

Like Chavez, Moustakas and Pillar were among the 31 players around the league who also had opt-out rights, under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement. It’s not clear whether any of the three players triggered their opt-outs or if the team released them outright.

Moustakas, 35, struggled mightily in his stint with the club this spring. In 46 plate appearances, the infielder slashed .195/.283/.317 with one homer and two driven in. The three-time All-Star, who was most known for his stretch with the Royals, hit .236/.256/.371 with 12 home runs and 48 RBI over 112 games last season between the Rockies and Angels.

As for Pillar, he didn’t have much better success offensively though seemed to have a more realistic chance of making the team. The outfielder hit .250/.306/.386 with five RBI in 49 appearances at the dish. Though his righty bat would’ve been a nice complement to the left-hitting Andrew Benintendi and Dominic Fletcher, Pillar will now see if any other opportunities present themself. Reports make it seem likely that he could return on a new deal, though the White Sox have brought in another option to potentially fill the backup role.

The organization announced on Friday that free agent Robbie Grossman has been signed to a minor-league deal. The outfielder has received an invite to the final days of big league camp as well and is expected to join the team in Arizona.

Grossman, 34, spent the 2023 season with the Rangers where he slashed .238/.340/.394. The switch-hitter has consistently been a league-average or better hitter over recent years and would provide the team with some flexibility in the lineup. With Spring Training wrapping up, it seems likely that Grossman will head to Triple-A Charlotte to continue ramping up.

Following all of these recent moves, the White Sox now have 42 players remaining in camp.

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Featured Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

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