(670 The Score) In the aftermath of slugger Jose Abreu signing with the Astros, White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf on Tuesday thanked Abreu for what he meant to his organization for the past nine seasons and added that “hope is not always translated into reality” in explaining why Abreu didn’t play on the South Side for his entire MLB career, as the sides had long said was their desire.
“José Abreu deservedly belongs among the roster of White Sox franchise all-time greats,” Reinsdorf said in a statement released by the team. “His determination and commitment to the game each and every day made him the consummate professional, always leading by example. It was my fervent hope that José would never wear another uniform, as I told him many times throughout the years. Unfortunately, hope is not always translated into reality. While we ended up in different places in the business side of the game, José and I always shared the same love of baseball. I am grateful to José for his friendship and the impact he made for the White Sox franchise both on the field and in the community. I want to thank him for always representing the values of the White Sox organization and the great city of Chicago – strength, hard work, pride and tenacity. His legacy is written in the White Sox record books forever.”
Abreu originally signed a six-year, $68-million deal with the White Sox ahead of the 2014 season after defecting from Cuba. He then re-signed with them on a three-year, $50-million deal after the 2019 season.
This time around, the desires of each side didn’t align as Abreu instead joined the Astros on a three-year deal worth $60 million. The White Sox have a logjam of first basemen and designated hitters on their roster. They wanted to open up first base for the 24-year-old Andrew Vaughn, so they let Abreu walk without a serious effort to retain him.
Abreu, who will turn 36 in January, was a three-time All-Star for the White Sox and won the American League MVP award in the shortened 2020 season.
His 243 homers are the third-most in White Sox history, and his 863 RBIs rank fifth.