White Sox, outfielder Dayan Viciedo agree to terms on $2.8M deal
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN Staff Reporter January 13, 2014 7:38PM
Dayan Viciedo hit better when he took something off his swing last season. | Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Updated: February 15, 2014 6:27AM
The White Sox and left fielder Dayan Viciedo avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to terms on a one-year, $2.8 million contract.
How Viciedo’s role this season might change after the Sox acquired center fielder Adam Eaton from the Arizona Diamondbacks is unclear. When the Eaton deal was made, general manager Rick Hahn said Alejandro De Aza would move from center to left.
‘‘The combination of De Aza [a left-handed hitter] and Viciedo [a right-handed hitter] in left and Eaton in center is going to make us stronger defensively, which was a problem last year,’’ Hahn said. ‘‘If we decide our best team is going with all three of those guys on the roster, [manager] Robin [Ventura] and I have already talked about different ways to make that work and get the most out of that from a matchup standpoint.’’
The Sox still would like to acquire a catcher, and De Aza and Viciedo would be among Hahn’s trade chips. But Viciedo is only 24 and still has considerable upside, so the Sox might not be eager to part with him.
‘‘He has the ability to be an impact player as an every-day player,’’ Hahn said. ‘‘I don’t think he is limited to being a platoon-type player. To get the most out of his production right now, picking certain matchups might help him and get him back on track to being the player we think he’s capable of being.’’
Viciedo, who was on the disabled list from April 19 to May 10 with a strained muscle on his left side, hit well when he took a little something off his swing after coming off the DL.
‘‘He went through stretches where he looked as good as anybody,’’ Ventura said. ‘‘And he also swings as hard as anybody. When he got hurt, I think some of it helped him because he couldn’t swing as hard as he had before. He has the tools to do it. We just want it — I think everybody just wants it — now.’’
Viciedo struggled at times in left field, especially getting to balls near the wall, but he can throw. The Kansas City Royals’ Alex Gordon (34) is the only American League player with more outfield assists than Viciedo (25) in the last two seasons.
The agreement with Viciedo leaves De Aza and second baseman Gordon Beckham as the only two arbitration-eligible players who have not come to terms with the team.