Chicago White Sox Acquire Brett Lawrie For Two Pitching Prospects


The deal that has been rumored for nearly 24 hours has finally come to fruition as the Oakland Athletics are reportedly shipping 3B/2B Brett Lawrie to the Chicago White Sox in exchange for RHP Jeffrey Wendelken and LHP Zack Erwin.

Although Lawrie has spent parts of five seasons in the Majors, he is still just 25 years old, turning 26 in January. Injuries in his time with the Blue Jays sapped some of his value on the market, but after one healthy season with the A’s, it seems as though Oakland wanted to get a package for him while they still could.

Wendelken, 22, was selected in the 13th round of the 2012 Draft by the Boston Red Sox and has been making the climb towards the big leagues since, finishing 2015 in Triple-A where he pitched 16 innings and accumulated a 4.50 ERA. The right-hander’s control has improved in his time in pro ball, with his seasonal WHIP in 2015 of 1.119 being well below his career mark of 1.316. He has struck out a batter an inning on average throughout his career and holds a 2.4 walks per nine rate.

Wendelken was acquired by the White Sox in the Jake Peavy deal back in 2013. According to Baseball America, Wendelken was throwing between 90-93 after transitioning to the bullpen last season, adding one to two miles per hour on his fastball. They also say that an above-average changeup is his best pitch.

Erwin was taken in the 4th round of the 2015 Draft out of Clemson and made his way up to A ball by season’s end. Erwin too is a control pitcher, averaging just 1.6 walks per nine in his first taste of pro ball while striking out 6.7. He also didn’t allow a home run in 40.1 innings pitched between Great Falls and Kannapolis.

Next: D-Backs Trade Wins Later for Wins Now

The A’s had the worst bullpen in the American League last season, finishing with a 4.63 ERA. Even though the A’s are in need of arms as they attempt to climb back in contention sooner rather than later, and this move certainly clears the way for Danny Valencia at third base, the return seems a bit light for a player with All-Star potential. The White Sox will have Lawrie for two more seasons before he hits free agency. In an offseason where acquisition prices have been sky-high, the Oakland Athletics may not have received quite enough for the piece that made the Josh Donaldson deal viable last offseason.