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White Sox

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Brett Lawrie is no longer a member of the White Sox.

The team requested waivers on the second baseman Friday morning for the purpose of granting him his unconditional release.

Lawrie, who signed a one-year deal for $3.5 million in December, hasn't played this spring as he continues to deal with a series of health issues that dates back to last season. Acquired from the Oakland A's the previous offseason, Lawrie last played for the White Sox on July 21 when he sustained a left leg injury.

Neither Lawrie or the team could find the cause of the malady for the remainder of the season, which left him frustrated. Lawrie — who hit .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs and 36 RBIs in 384 plate appearances last season — tweeted in the offseason that he believed an injury Robin Ventura accurately described as "tricky" was caused by the use of orthotics. Until he informed the team last Friday that he didn't feel quite right, Lawrie believed he was on the mend and had been happy with the progress he's made this spring. Both he and manager Rick Renteria said that Lawrie had participated at full speed in all of the team's workouts.

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"I haven't really gone backwards, and that's been key for me," Lawrie said on Saturday. "I guess the biggest thing is being able to trust myself when I get out on the field and not have to worry about my body and just worry about the game. If I can't do that then I'm not going to go out there and do that. So once I can clear that stuff up, and it's in the near future.

 

"I just need to keep being positive and keep putting the work in every single day and I'll be OK."

The move eventually opens the door for top prospect Yoan Moncada, who is expected to start the season at Triple-A Charlotte. In the interim, the White Sox are likely to give the bulk of time to Tyler Saladino and Yolmer Sanchez. Saladino hit .282/.315/.409 with eight homers and 38 RBIs in 319 plate appearances. He was even better when he played in the everyday starting lineup, hitting .301/.332/.409 from July 20 to September 21.

"I'm not too concerned about it, to be honest," Renteria said Thursday when asked about Lawrie's injury. "It's a situation where we do have coverage."