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Clear-minded Abreu hopes to retire with Sox

Excited about club's direction, slugger intends to be part of bright future
MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- Jose Abreu is entering his fourth season with the White Sox and has at least three more seasons contractually on the South Side.

If the first baseman had his choice, that stint in Chicago wouldn't end.

CHICAGO -- Jose Abreu is entering his fourth season with the White Sox and has at least three more seasons contractually on the South Side.

If the first baseman had his choice, that stint in Chicago wouldn't end.

"That is one of my wishes; I wish just to spend my whole career with this organization," Abreu said through interpreter Billy Russo. "At the same time, you have to realize this is a business and that there are too many factors you can't control.

"I'm just glad to be here today, and that's what I like to enjoy every time, every day with this team. It's a great organization."

Abreu is coming off his third straight season with at least 25 home runs, 30 doubles, 100 RBIs, a .290 average and an .820 OPS. He struggled at times in 2016 -- struggles for a player of Abreu's ilk -- going all of July without a homer.

Video: CWS@MIN: Abreu's second shot ties Statcast-era record

But the 2017 season brings a clear mind for Abreu. His family is happy, and any personal issues dealt with over the past two years are now behind him. It's that same clear mind that should help Abreu get through any sort of prolonged slumps.

"I know I can do better and I can do more for this team," Abreu said. "That's my goal. What happened yesterday, if it was a good day or a bad day, it doesn't matter. For me, today is a new opportunity to do better.

"I come here to try to work on the things I need to work on, and I'm here every day with a clear mind. I don't like anything outside of baseball to be in my mind. I'm very glad with the results that I've done the last few years. But I can do more. I'm not one of those people who likes to be satisfied with the results."

Abreu seems at peace as the season gets underway, the same sort of feeling he presented during Spring Training. He mentored Yoan Moncada -- the game's No. 2 prospect, per MLBPipeline.com -- a Cuban countryman and a former teammate with Cienfuegos, and talked on Tuesday about contacting Moncada before the start of Triple-A Charlotte's season.

"He has a lot of talent," Abreu said. "We are waiting for him here."

Many pundits believe the White Sox won't contend in 2017 and possibly '18 as part of their commitment to a rebuild. Abreu respects those opinions but disagrees with them. He's happy where he is, even if he has to deal with the inclement April weather usually featured in Chicago.

"I don't think that you can find a way to adjust to the cold weather, especially when you are playing baseball," a smiling Abreu said. "If you have a key, just let me know, because I don't know how you can do it. But that's part of the game, too. You can't pay attention to those factors once you are on the field.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chicago White Sox, Jose Abreu