CHICAGO -- The White Sox didn't take long to exercise their 2011 club option on Alexei Ramirez, making the decision official Thursday concerning their Silver Slugger Award winner at shortstop.
Ramirez will earn a base salary of $2.75 million, after he opted out of the final year of his four-year deal that would have paid him $1.1 million. The White Sox could have let Ramirez go to arbitration and had until Dec. 15 to make this particular call.
During his award-winning 2010 season, Ramirez, 29, batted .282 with 29 doubles, 18 home runs and 70 RBIs in 156 games. He became the first middle infielder in White Sox history to capture the Silver Slugger, leading all American League shortstops in average, slugging percentage (.431), home runs and total bases (252). He finished second in RBIs and tied for third in hits among shortstops, while becoming the third White Sox shortstop placed on The Sporting News AL All-Star team, joining Luis Aparicio (1968, 1970) and Luke Appling (1936, 1940, 1943).
Over three seasons with the White Sox, the native of Cuba has posted a .283 average with 54 home runs and 215 RBIs. The White Sox could explore a multiyear deal with Ramirez, but the team still has arbitration control through 2013 of quite possibly the AL's most complete shortstop.
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Being Ozzie Guillen and follow him on twitter at @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.