28-Year-Old Outfielder – Chicago White Sox
2014 Fantasy Baseball Outlook
After a strong showing last spring training, Tuiasosopo surprised many by nabbing a spot on the Tigers’ Opening Day roster. Deployed in a platoon role with Andy Dirks seeing the larger share of work i...
Matt Tuiasosopo Contract Information:
Signed a minor league contract with the Tigers in November 2012.
Tuiasosopo was traded to the White Sox on Thursday for cash considerations.
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Matt Tuiasosopo: MLB Games Played By Position
Matt Tuiasosopo Split Stats (View Full Split Stats)
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Chicago White Sox Roster
MajorsAbreu, Jose (1B)
AAABaisley, Jeff (3B)
AAAnderson, Tim (SS)
A+Blackmar, Mark (P)
AAlvarez, Eduardo (SS)
RookieAdams, Spencer (P)
Matt Tuiasosopo: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Tuiasosopo is capable of filling in in an emergency, but he's not an everyday major leaguer or even an inspiring bench option. His glove is mediocre, his bat isn't a weapon and he doesn't run. Tuiasosopo got 127 at-bats in 50 games last season, including 33 starts, and hit .173 with a nine extra-base hits. The addition of infielder Brendan Ryan means Tuiasosopo's utility role will be gone when Dustin Ackley joins the team, and the Mariners have better qualified third-base candidates in the pipeline.
An early season elbow injury sapped most of Tuiasosopo's season before he returned to modest success at Triple-A Tacoma. He didn't do much with his bat in a September callup, but he increased his versatility by learning second base. With Chone Figgins in the fold, Tuiasosopo's best chance to crack the starting lineup is gone. But there figures to be more lineup juggling before Opening Day arrives, and Tuiasosopo could still find himself in Seattle. It'll take another huge spring (he hit.404/.435/.632 last spring), though, because if it comes down a backup infield spot, the Mariners aren't likely to go with his mediocre glove.
After hitting .235 with no homers in the first two months at Triple-A Tacoma last season, Tuiasosopo came alive in the final three months, hitting .302 with 13 home runs and 33 extra-base hits. He subbed for Adrian Beltre in Seattle's final 14 games in a September call-up but didn't do much at the plate in limited at-bats. The Mariners could trade Beltre this season. If so, that likely would leave third base to Tuiasosopo, though he's not adroit with the glove. However, with top prospect Carlos Triunfel looking at a 2011 arrival (if not earlier) and possibly playing third base, Tuiasosopo's future in the organization is cloudy.
Tuiasosopo perhaps turned a corner in his development last season with a career year at Double-A West Tennessee(41 extra-base hits). Importantly, his strikezone judgment improved as he had 113 strikeouts to 76 walks. In 2006, he had 122 strikeouts to 34 walks between High-A and Double-A. He also cut his errors from 35 to 17. And he continued to swing a productive bat in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit .293/.396/.390 through 23 games.
Tuiasosopo's .306 average at High-A Inland Empire masked some underlying problems that eventually surfaced after a midseason promotion to Double-A San Antonio. He struck out 58 times to just 14 walks in 232 at-bats at Inland Empire and he slugged just .379 with one homer. It shouldn't have surprised, then, that he was overmatched at Double-A. He hit .185/.259/.218 in 216 at-bats at San Antonio with 64 strikeouts and 20 walks. In hindsight, the Mariners, who like to aggressively promote, probably should have left him at Single-A to develop. They sent him to winter ball in the offseason for more at-bats, but Tuiasosopo still struggled, hitting .167/.235/.205 in 78 at-bats. He'll return to Double-A this season to work on his bat while continuing to play third base after beginning his career as a shortstop.
Tuiasosopo could move to third base this season as the Mariners are loaded at shortstop. He might be better suited for third, as well, because he lacks the range and footwork at shortstop. Tuiasosopo is one of the system's top power prospects, though his power numbers dropped a bit at Mid-A Wisconsin last season. He'll play at High-A Inland Empire in 2006 as his power continues to develop.
Tuiasosopo tore up rookie ball last season, hitting safely in 18 of 20 games with eight multi-hit games, five doubles and two triples. He earned a late-season promotion to low Single-A Everett. He's a classic five-tool player, but the Mariners have a number of shortstop prospects and he's at least a couple years away from competing for a major league spot.