White Sox to sign Jose Abreu to six-year, $68 million deal

Koji Watanabe

The Mets will have to look elsewhere if they choose to pursue help at first base.

The Chicago White Sox have potentially found Paul Konerko’s replacement. The team reportedly agreed to a six-year, $68 million deal with Cuban first baseman Jose Abreu, according to The Chicago Tribune and Ken Rosenthal.

Pending a physical, Abreu, who defected from Cuba in late August, will become the White Sox' newest power-hitting first baseman. Konerko, who had held the position since 1999, is still contemplating retirement. The scouting reports on Abreu’s talent have varied. While some think his power separates him from fellow Cubans Yoenis Cespedes and Yasiel Puig, others feel he lacks the polish of those players.

Earlier this month, The Star-Ledger reported that Mets scouts were impressed by Abreu’s power during a workout in the Dominican Republic.

However, Mets fans longing for a power-hitting first baseman to replace the current, inconsistent options of Lucas Duda and Ike Davis quickly learned that Abreu would not be the answer. Mere days after Abreu’s workout received praise, Andy Martino reported that Sandy Alderson would not be bidding on the powerful Cuban. Instead, the club would look at internal options, including Wilmer Flores and Josh Satin, in addition to Duda and Davis.

Abreu has hit a Bondsian .407/.557/.845 with 111 home runs over his last four seasons in Cuba.

If the Mets do decide to sign a free agent first baseman, few interesting options remain, like Mike Napoli, Corey Hart, and Kendrys Morales.

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