White Sox acquire L. Garcia from Rangers
CHICAGO -- Leury Garcia became the player to be named in the return from Texas in Friday's trade that sent Alex Rios and $1 million in cash considerations to the Rangers.
Garcia, 22, is hitting .264 with four home runs, 19 RBIs, 12 stolen bases and 31 runs scored in 47 games this season with Triple-A Round Rock of the Pacific Coast League. He has made 42 appearances at shortstop and five in center field.
The 5-foot-10, 160-pound Garcia made the Rangers' Opening Day roster, batting .192 (10-for-52) with eight runs scored in 25 games. He started nine at second base and two each at shortstop and third before being optioned to Round Rock on June 15.
White Sox general manager Rick Hahn views the native of Santiago in the Dominican Republic as a top-notch utility player, at the very least. But his combination of defense and speed represents a needed addition in the overall retooling process moving into '14.
"There's a possibility he winds up in a super utility role," Hahn said. "He has the defensive ability to be an everyday shortstop or second baseman.
"It's going to come down to how much he hits ultimately to dictate his role. There's little question he's ready defensively to contribute at the big league level. His bat has to fully develop.
"Speed may well be his best tool. He's a plus-plus runner, plus arm and defensive player, switch-hitter, and has the positive of his versatility," Hahn said. "Even if the bat doesn't quite develop to reach his maximum upside, he has some value on the big league club. Then it would be about figuring out the best way to use it."
Garcia's best season came in 2012, when he hit .292 with 11 triples, 31 stolen bases and 55 runs scored in 100 games with Double-A Frisco. He was optioned to Triple-A Charlotte on Sunday, but he figures to be a September callup, if not before. The White Sox could have just let Rios' contract go to Texas, but they negotiated a deal to get a player of Garcia's potential.
"He's making some adjustments, cutting down length of swing, becoming more consistent with keeping the ball out of the air and on the ground and line drives, which is common for a young kid," Hahn said. "If he makes those adjustments, we could very well have a quality middle infielder."