January 28, 2023
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White Sox, All-Star outfielder agree to five-year, $75 million deal: reports

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The Chicago White Sox were arguably Major League Baseball’s biggest disappointment last season, but a big move Friday shows they are trying to return to their 2021 form.

The Southsiders and outfielder Andrew Benintendi have agreed to a five-year, $75 million deal, according to multiple reports.

The White Sox were poised to take the next step in 2022 after winning the AL Central in 2021 with their 93-69 record, but they finished 2022 at an even 81-81.

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Andrew Benintendi of the New York Yankees in the dugout during a game against the Oakland Athletics at RingCentral Coliseum Aug. 26, 2022, in Oakland, Calif.

Andrew Benintendi of the New York Yankees in the dugout during a game against the Oakland Athletics at RingCentral Coliseum Aug. 26, 2022, in Oakland, Calif.
(Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)

They lost Jose Abreu to the Houston Astros in free agency last month, but when Benintendi’s signing is made official, it will be the largest contract ever given by the White Sox.

Benintendi earned his first All-Star nod last season as a member of the Kansas City Royals. He was hitting .320 when he was traded to the New York Yankees, but he suffered a broken hamate bone in early September and missed the rest of the season.

New York Yankees outfielder Andrew Benintendi, center, leaves a game with the help of the Yankees' trainer, left, and Yankees manager Aaron Boone during a a game against the Tampa Bay Rays Sept. 2, 2022, at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.

New York Yankees outfielder Andrew Benintendi, center, leaves a game with the help of the Yankees’ trainer, left, and Yankees manager Aaron Boone during a a game against the Tampa Bay Rays Sept. 2, 2022, at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.
(Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Yankees had shown interest in bringing Benintendi back, but they were reportedly unwilling to match Chicago’s offer.

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Benintendi is a career .279 hitter, and he finished with a .304 average last season. He won his first Gold Glove Award in 2021. Benintendi’s batting average was the ninth-best mark in MLB last season, and he has one of the better strikeout rates in the league. His .351 career on-base percentage will put him right at the top of Chicago’s lineup.

The 28-year-old will join an outfield of Luis Robert in center and Gavin Sheets in right, with Eloy Jimenez mostly DHing and Gavin Sheets replacing Abreu at first.

The New York Yankees' Andrew Benintendi reacts after hitting a flyout during the ninth inning of a game against the Kansas City Royals July 28, 2022, in New York. 

The New York Yankees’ Andrew Benintendi reacts after hitting a flyout during the ninth inning of a game against the Kansas City Royals July 28, 2022, in New York. 
(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

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Despite an underwhelming 2022, the Sox do still have a young core of Robert, Jimenez, Vaughn, Tim Anderson and Yoán Moncada. They hired Pedro Grifol to be their manager in November.

Benintendi spent his first five seasons with the Boston Red Sox, winning a World Series with them in 2018.



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