On-Base Perception

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Curtis Granderson will be targeted by Chicago White Sox, report says

Curtis Granderson sits in the dugout watching a

Curtis Granderson sits in the dugout watching a game against the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium. (April 14, 2013) (Credit: AP)

The White Sox are planning a “hard push” for soon-to-be Yankees free agent Curtis Granderson this winter, according to a report from the Chicago Sun-Times, citing a source.

Granderson, a native of the near-south suburbs of Chicago who attended the University of Illinois at Chicago, could view the White Sox as a homecoming. The article notes that Granderson recently donated a new baseball facility to UIC.

Also factoring into the White Sox's apparent interest is Granderson’s likely reduced price. Granderson, 32, played in just 61 games this season – his fewest since 2005 – spending two stints on the disabled list for separate hand injuries after twice getting hit by pitches. He hit only .229 with a .317 on-base percentage and seven home runs and was largely relegated to a corner outfield role until Brett Gardner was injured in early September.

But he was a force from 2010-2012, posting an .843 on-base plus slugging percentage and hitting 108 home runs while playing passable defense in center.

Granderson would likely be a big help to the White Sox in three key areas:

- The White Sox were tied for 19th in MLB and 12th in the American League with the Astros after hitting 148 home runs. Granderson hit 84 home runs during 2011-12, when he was healthy. Only seven White Sox players hit more than the seven home runs Granderson managed in limited time this season. One of them, Alex Rios, was traded and another, Paul Konerko, could retire. Alejandro De Aza, who had 17 home runs, could be traded or moved to a backup role if the White Sox acquire a corner bat.

- Their 6.8 percent walk rate was tied with the Orioles for next-to-last in MLB. Granderson has a 10.2 percent career walk rate. He’s been at 11 percent or better each of the past three seasons.

- White Sox outfielders had -29 Defensive Runs Saved in 2013, sixth-worst in baseball. Their -10.6 Ultimate Zone Rating ranked 22nd in MLB. Granderson has a career 8.9 UZR in combined outfield play and has 30 DRS in 10 seasons. Advanced metrics, however, rate him as better in the corners during this phase of his career.

Tags: Yankees , Chicago White Sox , Curtis Granderson

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