White Sox, Dayan Viciedo avoid arbitration for $4.4 million

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There’s been lots of speculation that the White Sox will trade Dayan Viciedo, but in the meantime they avoided arbitration with the corner outfielder by signing a one-year, $4.4 million deal.

Viciedo has failed to develop any semblance of plate discipline offensively and his defense has always been bad, so hitting .254 with a .424 slugging percentage simply isn’t enough to make him a quality regular. On the other hand he’s still just 26 years old and does have 25-homer power.

Chicago has Melky Cabrera and Avisail Garcia in the outfield corners with Jose Abreu at first base and Adam LaRoche at designated hitter, so unless the White Sox plan to pay $4.4 million for a part-timer Viciedo is destined to be elsewhere eventually.

Bryce Harper played some third base in an intrasquad game

Bryce Harper third base
Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Phillies star outfielder Bryce Harper played some third base during Monday’s intrasquad game at Citizens Bank Park, Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports. Harper had been pestering manager Joe Girardi for the opportunity and the skipper finally gave in.

Girardi told Harper, “No diving. And make sure your arm is loose.” Harper had the opportunity to field one ball, a grounder to his left and he made the play perfectly.

Why put Harper at third base? Girardi said, “I think it’s important the guys have fun. I saw him a week ago taking ground balls there and I was impressed. His hands worked well out front and he threw the ball across the field well. I told him, ‘You look good there.'”

Despite the solid showing, don’t expect Harper to show up at third base in a meaningful game anytime soon. That being said, the Phillies’ second and third base situations are still not cemented. Jean Segura will likely open the season at the hot corner with Scott Kingery at second, but things could change between now and Opening Day in 10 days.

Harper, 27, is coming off a solid first season with the Phillies. He hit .260/.372/.510 with 36 doubles, 35 home runs, 114 RBI, 98 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases across 682 plate appearances. Per FanGraphs, Harper’s 4.6 Wins Above Replacement ranked 16th in the National League. For some people, those numbers weren’t nearly good enough, so the expectations remain high as Harper enters year two of his 13-year, $330 million contract.