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White Sox bench Alex Rios, call up Alejandro De Aza

Jul 27, 2011, 2:14 PM EDT

Rios_Alex

Lost in the Edwin Jackson trade this morning is that Chicago’s shakeup didn’t end there, as the White Sox have benched center fielder Alex Rios and called up Alejandro De Aza from Triple-A.

It’s unclear how long the benching will last, but the fact that Rios is owed $38 million for the next three seasons as part of the long-term contract the White Sox claimed off waivers in mid-2009 makes it unlikely to last that long. And trading Rios would almost surely involve eating a significant portion of that remaining money.

Rios’ time on the bench may be determined by how well De Aza plays after forcing his way into the White Sox’s plans by hitting .322 in 99 games at Triple-A.  He also hit .309 there last season, but De Aza isn’t a prospect at 27 years old and brings minimal power and poor plate discipline along with the nice batting averages and plus speed.

He’s far more likely to be a solid role player than an impact guy and platooning the left-handed-hitting De Aza with the right-handed-hitting Rios might be a decent solution in the short term at least. Rios recovered from a disastrous 2009 to hit .284 with 21 homers, 34 steals, and a .791 OPS last season, but has fallen apart this year with a .208 batting average and .555 OPS in 97 games to rank among MLB’s least valuable regulars.

  1. proudlycanadian - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:17 PM

    The Jays continue to thank the White Sox for claiming Rios. He has a ton of talent, but just doesn’t seem to try hard enough to be the player he should be. Once he got the big contract, he sort of shut it down.

    • spudchukar - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:36 PM

      Sounds a lot like the guy they just traded for.

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:38 PM

        Rasmus does not have the big contract.

      • Old Gator - Jul 27, 2011 at 5:58 PM

        First Rios, then Wells. He found folks to take ‘em both. Wow. Alex Anthopoulos came equipped with a stupid-finder right out of science fiction.

  2. rickditka - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:32 PM

    I have been a fan of Kenny Williams for some time, but his failures are really piling up.

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:43 PM

      Williams owed the Jays a favor from the time he traded a sore armed pitcher (I do not remember his name) to the Jays. After the trade the pitcher in that trade said that for the White Sox to make that trade, he must be hurt more than he thought. Unfortunately for the Jays, the pitcher was seriously hurt and was a write off.

  3. IdahoMariner - Jul 27, 2011 at 2:40 PM

    good for the white sox. I get that it’s a business, and you don’t want to pay a guy millions of dollars to sit on the bench. But when you run a hack out there every day, it’s just demoralizing for the fans, and for the player (if he cares at all about being good).
    now if only the Ms would do the same with Figgins. (or, you know, half the team.)

  4. aaronmoreno - Jul 27, 2011 at 4:16 PM

    I remember Joe Sheehan wailing away on the Jays for letting Rios go for nothing, essentially just letting someone have his contract for free.

    Oh well.

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