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South Side Sox 2021 Player of the Week (ending July 31): Andrew Vaughn

In Tony La Russa’s chess game, Eagle Eye Vaughn can match any piece on the board

Mitch Ransdell/South Side Sox

The 2021 White Sox are a chess game with too many pieces.

It’s a blessing and a curse, but the sheer amount of talent on this ball club means that some players are going to have to sit sidelined every few games, regardless of what they contribute. With Eloy Jiménez back in the lineup, and the imminent return of both Yasmani Grandal and Luis Robert, there’s a lot of flip-flopping and platooning coming down the pipes.

Up until now, the injury gaps have been filled by players going above and beyond expectations, a few of them just getting their feet wet in the major leagues. Andrew Vaughn has not only been an offensive success, but when sent to left field he also cuts the metaphorical mustard. Last week in Kansas City, Vaughn swapped gloves and played middle infield, another role that he’d never touched in the minors or majors.

Dependable, flexible, powerful. That’s a bundle of talent that you don’t want wasting away on the bench.

But where does Vaughn fit in once the White Sox outfield is at full strength? His one-game career as a second baseman is likely at an end, after infielder César Hernández arrived from Cleveland. Likely, Vaughn will continue to see action all across the board. Bubble Boy Eloy needs an occasional break from left field, and Vaughn can also spend some time at DH, where he’ll get a chance to flex his power and prowess behind the bat.

Every time Tony La Russa fills up his lineup card, he plays a chess game. Andrew Vaughn is a valuable piece of this team; arguably, the moment that he showed up at second base, the injured Madrigal became expendable.

It all goes to show that Vaughn’s potential is sky-high. Whether in left field, at second base, or in the batter’s box, the California Kid will give his all.

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2021 MVP Top 10

Carlos Rodón (80.2)
Lance Lynn (71.3)
Lucas Giolito (33.6)
Andrew Vaughn (32.0)
Yasmani Grandal (22.4)
Dylan Cease (20.3)
Dallas Keuchel (18.9)
Luis Robert (11.8)
Adam Engel (11.3)
Brian Goodwin (11.0)

2021 Cold Cat Bottom 10

Evan Marshall (-43.1)
Leury García (-36.3)
Yoán Moncada (-29.0)
Garrett Crochet (-27.8)
José Abreu (-27.7)
Aaron Bummer (-22.8)
Matt Foster (-22.4)
Liam Hendriks (-21.5)
Yermín Mercedes (-18.9)
Jonathan Stiever (-8.8)

South Side Sox Writer Standings