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Should I Stay or Should I Go: Eloy Jimenez

Injury-prone: not just lazy analysis

MLB: Chicago White Sox at Minnesota Twins
If Eloy Jiménez could stay healthy for a full season, he’d be a superstar.
Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports

fWAR: 1.7
bWAR: 1.7
WARP: 1.8

He should stay Despite missing almost half the season, Jiménez came within one home run of leading the team in that category. Simply put, he has power, something that is now missing from everywhere else in the lineup. Entering what should be the best years of his career, Jiménez finished the season looking like a finished product, displaying a good approach at the plate and tapping into his vast reserves of raw power.

He should go Joining Tim Anderson in the Glass Cannon category, Jiménez continues to be horribly unreliable, having missed significant playing time in all four of his seasons to date (except the COVID-shortened 2020 campaign). As with Anderson, the team has struggled horribly to replace him with competent production, and even with Oscar Colás in ascendance, that state of affairs is likely to continue. His $10.3 million salary for 2023 and $13.8 million for 2024 isn’t onerous, but on a team struggling with health and defense (note that Jiménez’s glove was so farcically bad it briefly convinced fans Andrew Vaughn was an improvement), it’s a lot of money for a player who is exacerbating their roster issues.

The verdict This is arguably going to be the toughest call of the offseason, because while Eloy’s bat is probably the best on the team in virtually any situation, he has longstanding reliability issues and remains a sieve in left field. Despite these warts, he is one of the few assets on the team who could be traded for a return that could potentially solve other serious issues on the roster, though obviously there would be a gaping hole at DH unless you’re a firm believer that Gavin Sheets and Jake Burger are going to fill that niche. If the White Sox can get an outfielder in return who can provide around 3-WAR production and provide better availability, superior defense, and a bat that isn’t a dead spot in the lineup, great. Otherwise, the White Sox are probably best served just rolling the dice on getting more out of Eloy as a full-time DH and revisiting the trade market midseason if necessary.