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White Sox unsure if Paul Konerko plans to retire or play

Nov 19, 2013, 10:15 AM EDT

Paul Konerko AP

White Sox general manager Rick Hahn recently met with free agent Paul Konerko and made it clear that he’d welcome the 38-year-old first baseman back in a part-time role.

However, during an interview with WSCR-AM radio in Chicago team chairman Jerry Reinsdorf revealed that the White Sox still “have no idea” if Konerko even plans to continue playing:

I have no idea. It’s truly Paul’s option. He has earned the right to come back if he wants to come back. He’s been the most popular player over the last 15 years that we’ve had. … He’s basically a White Sox lifer. He’s a terrific teammate. He’s our captain and he just has to make a decision whether he wants to come back or not.

At some point the White Sox will presumably need an answer from Konerko so they can move on with their offseason one way or another, although if he’d truly be returning in a part-time bench role perhaps timing isn’t that important.

Konerko hit .244 with 12 homers and a .669 OPS in 126 games for the worst OPS of his career and the White Sox signed Cuban slugger Jose Abreu to play first base while also having Adam Dunn at designated hitter.

  1. knowlegeforyou - Nov 19, 2013 at 10:21 AM

    The most popular player in the past 15 years would be Frank Thomas right…

    • ezthinking - Nov 19, 2013 at 10:30 AM

      Thomas last got regular ab’s for the White Sox in 2004. He got a ring but had nearly zero part off the championship. Ergo it’s Paul’s title.

  2. dvic13 - Nov 19, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Frank Thomas is the best player in white Sox history, but Pauly has been the most popular.

    Is there some magician out there that can make Adam Dunn disappear?

  3. phillysports1 - Nov 19, 2013 at 11:48 AM

    He should retire and comeback as hitting coach ?

  4. jqm46 - Nov 19, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    Adam Dunn is probably a very nice fellow, but a very expensive mistake. He is at best, an adequete First Baseman who in his entire career has been able to learn to hit to the opposite field. He’s pretty much a “one tool” player.

    A healthy Paul Konerko brings so much more to our team than the ability to hit home runs.

    We let A.J. go for (relatively) few dollars (unless there’s something the organization is not telling us), let’s not make another mistake with Paulie.

    We don’t want to sit out another season suffering Adam’s Mighty Casey act.

  5. jqm46 - Nov 19, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    Excuse me “unable to learn to hit to the opposite field”.

  6. edgeofthecentury - Nov 19, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Although Konerko has been a great ambassador and player for the Sox. His ability has diminished and I would have loved for him to announce his retirement before the last home series against Kansas City last year so the fans could have come out and showed him the love he deserves. I would rather see him just step aside now and maybe take a different position with the team or in the announcers booth (We all know there could be some upgrade there.). I don’t want to see him struggle as a part time player trying to hold on too long ie. Franco Harris.

    He has had a great run. Let’s all wish him luck in his next endeavor.

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