CHICAGO – The Chicago White Sox have made a series of moves over the last 24 hours, including designating young outfielder Jason Coats for assignment, and acquiring three other players.
On Thursday evening Bruce Levine, of WSCR-670 The Score reported that the White Sox reached an agreement with a familiar face on the south side, catcher Geovany Soto. Soto hit .269 with four home runs in 86 plate appearances with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in 2016.
Soto played for the White Sox in 2015 when he split time with catcher Tyler Flowers, hitting .219 with nine home runs and 21 RBIs over the course of 210 plate appearances. Soto was signed to a minor-league deal that will likely include a spring training invite.
On Friday morning the team announced that they designated outfielder Jason Coats for assignment, and claimed former Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Willy Garcia off of waivers. Coats, 26, appeared in 28 games for the White Sox in 2016, hitting .200 with one home run and four RBIs over just 58 plate appearances.
Coats was speculated to be a candidate to make the major-league roster in 2017 given the lack of outfield depth with the departure of Adam Eaton in December. Before being called up by the White Sox in 2016 Coats appeared in 78 games for Triple-A Charlotte, hitting .300 with 10 home runs and 38 RBIs.
Willy Garcia, 23, has spent the last six seasons within the Pirates minor league system, posting a cumulative .257 batting average over that span. Garcia appeared in 129 games for Triple-A Indianapolis in 2016, posting a .245 batting average with six home runs and 43 RBI. Garcia struck out 131 times in 2016 while walking only 31 times.
Shortly after the club announced the Coats and Garcia moves, they announced that they signed former Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Cody Asche to a minor-league deal. Asche, 26, has spent the last four seasons with the Phillies, spending time in left field and third base over that time.
Asche posted a .240 batting average with 31 home runs and 125 RBIs over the course of 371 games with the Phillies from 2013-2016. After hitting just .213 with four home runs and 18 RBIs over 218 plate appearances in 2016, the Phillies decided to move on from the former fourth round draft choice in the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft.
White Sox pitchers and catchers will report to spring training on February 14, with the rest of the club reporting to Camelback Ranch on February 18.