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What to Make of the White Sox/Yasiel Puig Rumblings

The White Sox have been rumored to be linked to free-agent outfielder Yasiel Puig.
Photo: Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Photo: Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Per Héctor Gómez, an MLB reporter from the Dominican Republic, the White Sox and the Rockies are interested in free-agent outfielder Yasiel Puig.

As reported by Brian Bilek a couple of weeks ago, the Sox were reported to be interested in Puig if the price dropped.

Now, take this with a grain of salt because a lot of things have to fall into place if the White Sox were to sign Puig. Earlier in the offseason, Hector Gomez had also reported that the Sox were going to sign Marcell Ozuna, so his source may not completely be accurate.

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This is now the second person in the recent month to discuss the possibility of Yasiel Puig playing for the White Sox in 2020. The White Sox have an extremely strong connection to Cuban players (i.e. Minnie Minoso, Jose Abreu, Jose Contreras, Yoan Moncada, Luis Robert, etc.). They always have. The acquisition of Yasmani Grandal earlier this offseason even enhances that connection.

In previous articles, I've discussed the possibility of Puig platooning with Nomar Mazara in right field. However, his career splits do not set him up for success against lefty pitchers. That said, adding Puig's arm to the outfield and bat to the lineup/bench would fortify the White Sox 26-man roster in the case of injury or needed rest days. Let's not forget that Puig hits the ball hard, as he placed in the 69th percentile in exit velocity in 2019 according to Statcast. He also has a career xwOBA of .341, which takes into account exit velocity, sprint speed, and lauch angle while removing defense from the equation. He may be streaky at times, but Puig could be a positive addition to this team.

Forget the opinion that he's a cancer or bad clubhouse guy — the more good players you can get on a team, the better shape you will be in. Puig is a player that can add 2-3 wins with his addition and he may come at a price less than $10 million per year. Why not take the risk on him?