Melky: White Sox must play like family to contend

Outfielder entering second season with the South Siders

Melky: White Sox must play like family to contend

CHICAGO -- Very little gray area exists for Melky Cabrera when judging his team's success.

If his squad reaches the postseason, then put that year in the win column. If his team isn't playing into October, then mark it down as a failure. So even though the White Sox improved from 73 wins in 2014 to 76 in '15, Cabrera knows this talented squad didn't reach its primary goal.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox remodel in big way this offseason

Frazier, Lawrie headline GM Hahn's roster moves

White Sox remodel in big way this offseason

CHICAGO -- The White Sox revamping process moved into Year 3 this offseason via the significant additions made by general manager Rick Hahn.

The second part of a seven-part Spring Training preview takes a look at these important new White Sox players:

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox sign righty Latos to 1-year deal

White Sox sign righty Latos to 1-year deal

CHICAGO -- The White Sox strengthened the back end of their starting rotation by agreeing to a one-year, $3 million deal with right-hander Mat Latos, the club announced on Tuesday.

If the White Sox get the Latos who pitched from 2010-13 with the Padres and Reds, then they might have done more than just strengthen the fourth or fifth starter's spot. Latos posted a 51-35 record with a 3.27 ERA during that four-year-stretch, making at least 31 starts and pitching at least 184 innings in each of those four seasons.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox ink Ishikawa to Minor League deal

White Sox ink Ishikawa to Minor League deal

CHICAGO -- The White Sox have agreed to terms with Travis Ishikawa on a Minor League deal with an invite to Spring Training. The 32-year-old left-handed hitter has experience in left field, right field and at first base.

Ishikawa has 1,050 career plate appearances over eight Major League seasons, playing for five different teams. He was with the White Sox organization in 2013, hitting .250 with two homers and 23 RBIs over 120 at-bats with Triple-A Charlotte.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

7 White Sox who could use a rebound season

7 White Sox who could use a rebound season

CHICAGO -- Sometimes the best move a team can make is simply allowing for the bounceback of players who struggled or battled injuries the previous year.

This first installment of a seven-part White Sox Spring Training preview takes a look at those rebound candidates on the South Side.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Spring not far away as truck heads to Arizona

White Sox pack up camp necessities for trip out west

Spring not far away as truck heads to Arizona

CHICAGO -- Special cargo was loaded on the White Sox equipment truck moving from Chicago to Glendale, Ariz., last February, as Paul Konerko's home clubhouse locker made the journey.

That delivery became possible with all of the lockers being removed during a remodel at U.S. Cellular Field. But when that truck departed Friday afternoon from the South Side of Chicago, it was business as usual.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Did July change Chicago's offseason?

Summer surge persuaded White Sox to hang on to Samardzija

Did July change Chicago's offseason?

CHICAGO -- In the midst of a disappointing 2015 campaign, there was White Sox excellence. From July 23-29, Robin Ventura's crew won seven straight games in Cleveland and Boston, outscoring the Indians and Red Sox by a 54-19 margin.

The offense scored early, often and supported a strong pitching staff. It's a streak that pushed the White Sox within one game of .500, at 49-50, and moved them into contention for the American League's second Wild Card. It also came just prior to the non-waiver Trade Deadline and might have altered the South Siders' current offseason direction.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Say what? Best quotes from SoxFest '16

Say what? Best quotes from SoxFest '16

CHICAGO -- Even if you attended SoxFest, '16 at the Hilton Chicago over the weekend, there was so much going on you could not have been everywhere all the time. And, for those who could not make it, here are some of the most memorable quotes from the three-day event:

"Every year that you can't reach the playoffs, it's a bad year. For me, it doesn't matter. You have a good year if you reach the playoffs."
-- Melky Cabrera, on the '15 season.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox Minor Leaguer Shearrow suspended

CHICAGO -- Lucas Shearrow, a right-hander in the White Sox organization, received a 50-game suspension without pay following a second positive test for a drug of abuse. The suspension was announced by the Commissioner's Office on Friday following violations of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

Shearrow, 24, is on the roster of the Rookie-level Great Falls Voyagers and will serve his suspension effective at the start of the Pioneer League season. Shearrow posted a 3-3 record with a 3.17 ERA over 19 games and 48 1/3 innings for Great Falls last season. He pitched for the Arizona Rookie League team in 2014 after being signed as an undrafted free agent out of Lindsey Wilson College on June 22, 2014.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rumor with a view: Why not chase Puig?

Amid Ethier speculation, maybe Sox should swing for Yasiel

Rumor with a view: Why not chase Puig?

CHICAGO -- The White Sox goal during this offseason has been simple: Add players who give the South Siders a better chance to win a championship.

They aren't looking for outside "projects," players who could bounce back from rough years to help the team, aside from potential Minor League deals. Their search has focused on clear upgrades in the areas where questions exist.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Saladino favorite for Opening Day SS

GM Hahn: 'Very strong possibility' 26-year-old gets job and bats ninth

Saladino favorite for Opening Day SS

CHICAGO -- White Sox general manager Rick Hahn stressed all weekend at SoxFest that the roster as presently constructed likely wouldn't be the one taking the field on Opening Day.

But as of now, the starting shortstop appears to be Tyler Saladino.

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Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hahn had 'Groundhog Day' with Keppinger deal

Hahn had 'Groundhog Day' with Keppinger deal

CHICAGO -- Rarely are there do-overs in life, but Bill Murray's 1993 film "Groundhog Day" offered a scenario where a person can get multiple chances to get a day right before moving forward.

White Sox general manager Rick Hahn had one of those days when the White Sox agreed to a three-year, $12 million deal with free agent Jeff Keppinger on Dec. 10, 2012.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sale aware of his impact on fans young, old

White Sox ace emphasizes making right decisions to remain 'positive influence'

Sale aware of his impact on fans young, old

CHICAGO -- Chris Sale considers himself a father, a husband, a son and -- as he said during SoxFest this past weekend -- someone who is "somewhat all right at pitching."

The talented White Sox southpaw is not concerned with the trappings of fame, but Sale does seem amused and often touched by those who recognize him, as happened recently when picking up his 5-year-old son and his friend from jujitsu class.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Scouting director on value of 3 picks in Top 50

Hostetler wants White Sox to keep all selections, but knows it might not happen

Scouting director on value of 3 picks in Top 50

CHICAGO -- Nick Hostetler has to come clean.

When he has heard rumblings of White Sox interest in free agents who received and turned down qualifying offers from their respective teams, he makes his feelings known to general manager Rick Hahn.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fulmer not in Cactus rotation but will get starts

White Sox No. 2 prospect may see action against AL Central rivals

Fulmer not in Cactus rotation but will get starts

CHICAGO -- The White Sox Cactus League rotation has been laid out by pitching coach Don Cooper, and Carson Fulmer, MLB.com's newly minted No. 38 prospect, is not featured.

That alignment won't preclude the right-hander from getting a few starts in Arizona, as Cooper explained near the close of SoxFest on Sunday at the Hilton Chicago.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Danks doesn't want this to be final season

White Sox lefty's 5-year, $65M deal expires after '16

Danks doesn't want this to be final season

CHICAGO -- John Danks wants to keep pitching after the 2016 season, when his five-year, $65 million deal with the White Sox comes to an end.

The affable southpaw also understands that he needs to perform effectively for teams to have interest in extending his career.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Big Hurt returns to White Sox in new role

Hall of Famer hired as special consultant for business operations

Big Hurt returns to White Sox in new role

CHICAGO -- Frank Thomas always will be a part of the White Sox.

The Hall of Famer stands as the greatest hitter in organization history and as one of the legends most instantaneously associated with the South Siders. But now the Big Hurt once again has an official role with the team after hitting the pause button for one year.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Trio of stars fields questions from kids at SoxFest

Eaton, Sale and Abreu enjoy give and take with young White Sox fans

Trio of stars fields questions from kids at SoxFest

CHICAGO -- Six-year-old Adam had a very important question for Adam Eaton on Saturday morning at SoxFest, asking the White Sox center fielder his favorite color.

"That's a great question, and that's a great name you have," Eaton told the youngster. "I'd have to go with blue. I love the color blue -- dark blue, not that Cubs stuff."

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Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Thomas believes Raines is Hall of Famer

White Sox ace Sale realizes importance of finishing season strong

Thomas believes Raines is Hall of Famer

CHICAGO -- If Tim Raines gets over the 75 percent mark in next year's Hall of Fame balloting, White Sox legend Frank Thomas will be happy to welcome his former teammate to the elite club where Thomas resides via first ballot.

"He deserved to get in this year," said Thomas after his private SoxFest seminar Saturday. "Rock's one of my best friends in life and I love him. He was a great mentor, a great teammate, one of the best teammates ever.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox have 2 of Top 100 Prospects

RHP Fulmer (No. 38) and SS Anderson (47) make the cut

White Sox have 2 of Top 100 Prospects

CHICAGO -- Carson Fulmer and Tim Anderson help bring the White Sox future to the present this weekend at SoxFest 2016 as two of the handful of prospects in attendance at the Hilton Chicago.

They carry with them the tag of the most Major League-ready among the White Sox Top 30 Prospects. They also have been anointed as two of MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects for 2016. The right-handed throwing Fulmer checks in at No. 38 after being ranked No. 42 in the 2015 midseason listing, while shortstop Anderson rises to No. 47 after sitting at No. 77 prior to the '15 season.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

White Sox have 'flexibility' to add to roster

General manager Hahn said no deadline exists to find new contributors

White Sox have 'flexibility' to add to roster

CHICAGO -- In terms of the 2016 roster, the White Sox are not finished.

If Chicago is to add on via free agency or through trade, though, it will need to be a creative sort of move.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Avila shifts from No. 13 to 31 with White Sox

Club asked veteran catcher if he wanted new number

Avila shifts from No. 13 to 31 with White Sox

CHICAGO -- Alex Avila wore the jersey No. 13 during his tenure with the Tigers from 2009-15. But he will be sporting No. 31 for the White Sox, as he featured during the SoxFest media session Friday at the Hilton Chicago.

"Basically, I guess 13 the other way around," Avila said. "I wore 31 when I was in Little League and that was kind of like the number I wore all the way through high school. So, just figured it would be a nice change."

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Roger Schlueter

After 2 years, Abreu already in elite company

On his 29th birthday, we look back at slugger's feats early in career

After 2 years, Abreu already in elite company

When Jose Abreu signed a six-year, $68 million contract with the White Sox in October 2013, there were many who wondered if he could live up to that kind of contract. Two seasons into his career, the Cuban slugger is looking like a bargain. And with Friday representing his 29th birthday, it's as good a time as any to explain just how special his first two years have been.

• Abreu is one of two players (Albert Pujols is the other) in baseball history to reach 30 homers and 100 RBIs in each of his first two seasons.

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Roger Schlueter is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Slimmer Garcia confident, prepared for second year

Young White Sox right fielder refines stance with hitting coach Steverson

Slimmer Garcia confident, prepared for second year

CHICAGO -- Avisail Garcia joined Ken "Hawk" Harrelson, Harold Baines and pitching coach Don Cooper in calling season ticket-holders Thursday to thank them for their continued patronage. If you were thinking he got an earful, you'd be wrong - the calls were positive and upbeat.

One fan took the time to tell the 24-year-old Garcia he was expecting a season full of big results.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: How will White Sox fare in '16?

Beat reporter Scott Merkin answers fans' questions

Inbox: How will White Sox fare in '16?

CHICAGO -- SoxFest has arrived, meaning just three weeks until pitchers and catchers report to Camelback Ranch. Hope to see a number of you at the Hilton Chicago this weekend.

Let's get right to your questions:

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hospital visit gives White Sox perspective

Danks, Ventura and wives meet with kids battling cancer and blood disorders

Hospital visit gives White Sox perspective

CHICAGO -- White Sox manager Robin Ventura, his wife, Stephanie, veteran pitcher John Danks and his wife, country music artist Ashley Monroe, paid a visit to Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago on Thursday morning, visiting the hematology and oncology floor.

They spoke with young patients battling cancer and blood disorders. They signed autographs, took pictures and delivered White Sox gifts. They brought smiles to the faces of the kids on the floor, with Monroe singing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" with one patient.

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Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Get ready to root in '16 with some of the craziest fan outfits of '15

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Get ready to root in '16 with some of the craziest fan outfits of '15

Yes, we're still technically in the depths of winter -- we'll remember you as you lived, Camden Yards -- but baseball fans should take heart. The snow is (kind of, sort of) melting! Pitchers and catchers will be reporting in just a few weeks! We're nearly in February, which is the month directly before real, live baseball begins! 

OK, fine, so we're not quite out of the doldrums yet. Still, we swear that baseball is coming sooner rather than later -- which means it's time to get back in touch with your inner fan. And so, on this National Clashing Clothes Day, we give you the some of the wildest fan wardrobes of last season. May they inspire you for the season ahead, like the striped zebra pants of your dreams:

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