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Leury's versatility increases his trade value

MLB.com @scottmerkin

SEATTLE -- Much of the trade talk involving the White Sox seems to center upon pitchers such as James Shields, Joakim Soria and Luis Avilan or even first baseman Jose Abreu and right fielder Avisail Garcia. But a versatile player such as Leury Garcia also could have great value.

Garcia started in center during Saturday night's 5-0 victory over the Mariners at Safeco Field, but moved to left field in the ninth inning and took a two-run home run away from Mitch Haniger. He was back in left field for Sunday's series finale, but can play every position including pitcher and catcher, if necessary.

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SEATTLE -- Much of the trade talk involving the White Sox seems to center upon pitchers such as James Shields, Joakim Soria and Luis Avilan or even first baseman Jose Abreu and right fielder Avisail Garcia. But a versatile player such as Leury Garcia also could have great value.

Garcia started in center during Saturday night's 5-0 victory over the Mariners at Safeco Field, but moved to left field in the ninth inning and took a two-run home run away from Mitch Haniger. He was back in left field for Sunday's series finale, but can play every position including pitcher and catcher, if necessary.

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"Leroy is obviously a tremendous asset for us to have," said White Sox manager Rick Renteria of the switch-hitting Garcia. "The ability for him to play all three outfield positions, as everyone has seen, play all infield positions -- we haven't had him at first or behind the plate -- but does a really nice job of really not skipping a beat wherever you put him.

"He's a guy that's very athletic. Obviously feels very comfortable in the role that he's in. He embraces it, probably has a lot of fun with it, which allows him the freedom to express himself physically very well, and at the plate as well."

Shortstop is Garcia's natural position and his favorite. Garcia smiled when adding third base was his least favorite spot.

"It's too close to home plate," said Garcia with a laugh. "But when [Renteria] put me on third base the other day, I was ready. I was like 'Let's go, why not?' But this is the difficult one.

"Ricky puts me in different positions. That's my job. Utility guy, play different positions. I like it. I've been more in the lineup."

In his first year of arbitration, Garcia is earning $1.175 million. The White Sox still have two years of control with the 27-year-old.

"I don't think about that," said Garcia the possibility of being traded. "I just put my mind in the game, do my best, try to help the team. And just keep working. I can control that. You can just control in the game. I don't think about it right now."

Rodon getting ready

When Carlos Rodon takes the mound Tuesday in Anaheim, it will be his first start since July 11. Rodon is back on his regular starting preparatory schedule, having thrown a bullpen session Saturday.

Rodon also played catch with Kevan Smith during the All-Star break at UIC. The break didn't exactly come at an opportune time for the southpaw, who had allowed two runs on eight hits with 13 strikeouts over his last 13 1/3 innings. But he's ready to pick up where he left off in California.

"Just getting ahead. Fastball command is a little better," said Rodon of his progression since returning to the mound on June 9 after rehab following arthroscopic shoulder surgery last September. "Things just crispening up a little bit. Going well. Hopefully keeps going that way. Just give my team a chance to win every day I go out there. Find some consistency and find ways to win."

Third to first

• Corey Zangari, who had nine home runs in 64 at-bats for Advanced Rookie Great Falls this season, injured his right hand during his first game with Class A Kannapolis on July 20. He has been out of action since. The first baseman lost the 2017 season to Tommy John surgery.

• Eloy Jiménez, the White Sox No. 1 prospect, per MLB Pipeline, has hit safely in 10 of his last 11 games for Triple-A Charlotte, going 18-for-42 with five doubles, three homers and seven RBIs in that span. He is hitting .351 with five homers, 10 RBIs and a 1.022 OPS in 20 games with Charlotte this season.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Leury Garcia