The Chicago White Sox placed Adam Eaton on the 15-day disabled list after the outfielder suffered a strained hamstring this past week. With another outfielder unable to play due to injury, the Sox picked up former Toronto Blue Jays right fielder Moises Sierra off waivers. The 25-year-old has struggled in his 97 games over three seasons with the Jays, hitting a measly .229 with an OBP of .290. So far this season Sierra has a .059 average with an OBP of .086.
After a 2013 that saw Sierra hit an impressive .290/.369 in 35 games as an occasional fourth starter in Toronto, the ball club gave him a shot to garner up early season at-bats this year. Without any options left, the organization decided to part ways with him after Sierra was unable to carry the momentum from last season over to 2014
So what do the White Sox get with Sierra? The team gets an outfielder who will compete with Jordan Danks for playing time. Without any options left, Sierra has to stay on the Sox active roster or the team risks losing him to someone scouring the waiver wire. This notion means that the outfielder will get his chance to stick in Chicago.
Sierra has a track record for displaying some power when given regular at-bats. After his first five years of his minor league career, Sierra was averaging five home runs a season, but smashed 18 in 2011 and 17 in 2012. He was on pace to have around that range in 2013, but the late season call-up cut into that total.
Along with Alejandro De Aza, Sierra has had an OBP of over .340 in four of his eight minor league seasons, which indicates that he has shown a knack for getting on base. The Jays also saw Sierra’s potential to be a top of the order treat.
With the struggles of De Aza and Danks after the injury to Avisail Garcia, the Sox are looking for guys who can produce in the lineup as well as out on the field. While Sierra does not have the track record of doing that consistently so far in the majors, he has shown flashes of this in the minors.
Sierra is a better hitter than Danks and a better fielder than De Aza. Even if Sierra is considered by many as just a fourth outfielder, the Sox have a track record transforming those type of guys into everyday players.
In 2009, the Sox claimed De Aza off waivers from the then Florida Marlins. After giving him a chance in 2010, De Aza transformed into a starter who was deadly at the top of the order last season.
Giving Sierra a chance is the best form of action the Sox can do. With De Aza falling out of favor and Danks continuing to struggle, it would not hurt to give Sierra regular at-bats for the foreseeable future. At this point in time, the Sox should be open to anything.