A former Philadelphia Phillies iconic player from their recent championship run finally signed to play in the 2016 season.
Shortstop Jimmy Rollins
signed a minor league contract today with the Chicago White Sox, and will compete in spring training for their starting role at the position.
The White Sox allowed their starting shortstop for the last eight seasons, Alexei Ramirez
, to leave via free agency in the off-season. Ramirez signed last month with the San Diego Padres.
“We envision Jimmy contributing both on and off the field,” Hahn said in a statement, per Kane. “He provides us with another quality infield option with the potential to play a variety of roles, as well as another significant positive presence inside our clubhouse.”
The Chisox hope to contend in the American League Central Division after beefing up their offense with the signing of free agent left fielder Melky Cabrera
, and the addition of both 3rd basemanTodd Frazier
and 2nd baseman Brett Lawrie
The division should be especially tough this year, with the Detroit Tigers looking to bounce back, the Minnesota Twins an up-and-comer, and the Cleveland Indians also expecting to contend.
The White Sox also have to compete in their own market, as the crosstown Chicago Cubs have emerged as National League favorites with a roster that features a number of high-profile and talented youngsters.
Other former ’08 Phillies remaining in the game include Cole Hamels
, traded by the Phils to Texas last season.
has re-signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers for one season. Jayson Werth
remains with the Washington Nationals in a contract that takes him through the 2017 season.
won the World Series with Kansas City a year ago, and is signed through 2018 with the Royals.
expects to play this season, but remains a free agent. He has been linked to the Rangers in recent days.
Per MLB insider Ken Rosenthal on his Twitter feed, Rollins had other offers to play in 2016 in a “Super Utility” role for even more money.
During his 15 seasons with the Phils, the popular ‘JRoll’ became the franchise’ all-time Hits leader, and was the leader of the 2008 World Series champion and five consecutive NL East champs.
Rollins won the 2007 National League Most Valuable Player Award, was a 4x Gold Glover, 3x NL All-Star, and also took home the 2007 NL Silver Slugger at shortstop.
The Phillies traded Rollins to the Los Angeles Dodgers on December 19th, 2014 in exchange for pitchers Zach Eflin
and Tom Windle
The now 37-year old Rollins hit for just a .224/.285/.358 slash line in LA, with 13 homers, 12 steals, and 71 runs scored in 563 plate appearances.
He was supplanted in the starting lineup at the end by the Dodgers’ uber prospect Corey Seager
If Rollins does win the starting job in Chicago, keeps it, and is healthy at the time, he would return to Citizens Bank Park for a quick two-game series when the Chisox visit on September 20th and 21st.