With just 20 days remaining till Opening Day, the starting third baseman for the White Sox looks like it will be Conor Gillaspie. Gillaspie is in a battle with Jeff Keppinger and Matt Davidson for the opening day nod. The White Sox traded their closer Addison Reed for Matt Davidson in the offseason. Davidson is a 22 yr old power hitting third baseman with some pop. Davidson, however, has struggled offensively and defensively in Spring making it more likely that he starts the season at AAA. While some may be disappointed that the Sox's new acquisition will be starting in the minors it's the right move. Davidson has the potential to be a cornerstone for this team for years to come. If Davidson needs to go down to Charlotte till May it's ok. In Spring, we have seen Davidson struggle at the plate going 3/19. He's penciling out right now a stat line of .158/.200/.621. Defensively, Davidson needs some seasoning with his first step quickness.
The veteran Jeff Keppinger hasn't taken the field at third base yet this Spring. Keppinger is suffering from a sore shoulder . He has been limited to the DH position to get some at bats. Keppinger has 2 hits in 16 plate appearances and likely, in my opinion, will start the season on the DL. I see the White Sox leaving Keppinger in Arizona for a extended Spring Training. That basically opens the door for Gillaspie, who is having a good Spring.
Gillaspie is 6 for 21 in Spring with a HR and 3 RBI's. He will provide manager Robin Ventura a left-handed bat in a very right-handed lineup. Gillaspie's defense looks improved as he is moving quicker to his right and throwing with authority. Gillaspie was a late pickup in Spring Training last year from the San Francisco Giants. He was thrown into full time service last season due to injuries. While the White Sox may prefer to have Gillaspie coming off the bench, he's their best option to start 2014. If Keppinger does land on the DL like I predict, I can see Marcus Semien making this team. He will get some time at third when a tough left hander is on the mound. While the future at third looks bright with the potential of Matt Davidson, it looks like to start 2014 the position belongs to Conor Gillaspie.
Filed under: Uncategorized