The Chicago White Sox have acquired third baseman Conor Gillaspie from the San Francisco Giants in exchange for pitcher Jeff Soptic. Following this trade, the White Sox also designated Lars Anderson for assignment.
Playing most of the 2012 season for the Triple-A affiliate of the San Francisco Giants the Fresno Grizzlies, Gillaspie hit .281, with 14 homeruns and 49 RBI. Gillaspie, who bats left-handed, also appeared in six games for the Giants last year, hitting .150 with two RBI.
Drafted 37th overall in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft, Gillaspie was a top prospect in the Giants organization. Playing his college ball at Wichita State University, Gillaspie was a teammate of Kenny Williams Jr., the son of Executive Vice President Ken Williams.
Having to only give up a 2011 third-round pick in Soptic, acquiring Gillaspie makes sense for the White Sox. In the past, the Sox have shown a tendency to pick up former top prospects that havn’t panned yet out, and try to redevelop them. Also, the fact that Williams may know Gillaspie on a personal level may have factored into the White Sox trading for the third baseman.
Although this move makes sense for the White Sox, I highly doubt Gillaspie will make the South Siders Opening Day roster. With Jeff Keppinger projected to start at third for the White Sox in 2013, and a now healthy Brent Morel backing him up, there isn’t much room for Gillaspie at the hot corner. This move was made based on the chance that the Sox could find lightening in a bottle with Gillaspie.
How likely is it that Gillaspie will find his form this spring for the White Sox? Going off of his track record with the Giants organization, I wouldn’t count on it. I expect Gillaspie’s stay in a White Sox uniform to be very short and uneventful.