The White Sox lost “a franchise icon,” as Rick Hahn described Jose Abreu, when he decided to sign with the reigning World Series champions this offseason.
Abreu, who played nine seasons with the Southside, signed a three-year, $50 million deal with the Astros during the off-season, acting as Yuli Gurriel’s successor at first base.
The longtime White Sox icon explained her gratitude to the White Sox organization by starting her new start with the Astros.
“I’m very grateful for the organization of the White Sox,” Abreu said. “They gave me the opportunity to play in the big leagues for nine years. Everything in life depends on the process. My trial with the White Sox is over and thankfully I’m now starting a new trial where I chose my agent. my family decided to be here.”
During his time at Chicago, Abreu has received three All-Star nominations, three silver sluggers, Rookie of the Year in 2014, and an American League MVP award in 2020.
He is one of the best White Sox forwards in franchise history and will always be appreciated for his locker room leadership and unparalleled hustle on the field.
“Obviously it’s always a tough day from an emotional or fan perspective when you see a franchise icon wear a different uniform,” Khan said in November. “It’s a day no one ever imagines, but the realities of the business side sometimes dictate that these things happen.”
In his place, third-year batter Andrew Vaughn would hold the fort for the White Sox at first base.
Vaughn has been stuck in the outfield in past seasons, a position unnatural for a former first-round pick. He played just under 200 games in the outfield and under 40 games at first base and designated hitter.
Despite Abreu’s departure, the team is confident Vaughn will succeed in Abreu’s place.
“We made no secret of the fact that we are very optimistic about the future of Andrew Vaughn, and made no secret of the fact that over the past couple of years we have asked this player a lot in terms of his progress and game. him out of position,” Khan said.
Thus, the White Sox and Abreu parted ways for the first time in almost a decade. As for Abreu, he does not hold on to the past, but looks forward to the future.
“Life is beautiful,” Abreu said. “Just try to enjoy life every single day. Once again, I am very grateful to my teammates and everyone who supported me during the nine years that I was in the organization.”