TUCSON, Ariz. - To the surprise of almost no one- including Josh Fields – the White Sox announced before Tuesday’s game with Colorado that the second-year player would be starting the season in Class AAA Charlotte.
That means Joe Crede will be the Opening Day third baseman, with the Sox unable to land any substantial trade for the free agent-to-be this spring.
General manager Ken Williams put the writing on the wall two weeks ago when he told the Sun-Times that he had spoken to two teams about a Crede deal and came away very unimpressed at what the return would have been.
He knew “that difficult talk’’ would be coming, and on Tuesday it came.
Fields plans to address the media on Wednesday, but knew that the deck was stacked against him as late as Sunday.
“I would feel a lot better if I was on an even playing field, because I do feel good about what I did last year and what I’ve done this spring,’’ Fields said Sunday. “I mean to a certain extent, there isn’t much I could do because Joe is established. He’s shown what he can do. I mean this guy has performed on a big stage, he’s a Silver Slugger winner. In that aspect it is a little harder to accept because I feel I put myself in as good a position as I could and I deserve to be in the big leagues, but I guess when it’s your time, it’s your time.’’
As far as second base, the plan is to give Juan Uribe the first look there as the regular starter.
The outfield logjam won’t be decided until the club gets the final results from a Jerry Owens MRI this afternoon, and neither will the final bullpen spot.
The club also announced that infielder/outfielder Jason Bourgeois, right-handed pitcher D.J. Carrasco and catcher Paul Phillips were reassigned to minor-league camp.
With the moves, the Sox roster is down to 28 players.