CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago White Sox had one of the majors' most powerful right-handed bats last season in Jose Abreu. Now they are hoping Adam LaRoche can help balance their lineup.
LaRoche has agreed to a contract with the White Sox, a person familiar with the situation said Friday night. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team had not announced the deal with the free-agent first baseman.
USA Today first reported the move.
LaRoche is likely to see most of his time at designated hitter. Abreu is entrenched at first after the Cuban slugger hit .317 with 36 homers and 107 RBIs in 145 games, winning the AL Rookie of the Year award.
LaRoche, who turned 35 on Nov. 6, gives the White Sox some sorely needed power from the left side. He hit .259 with 26 homers and 92 RBIs in 140 games this year for NL East champion Washington. He has 243 career homers and 838 RBIs in 11 years in the majors.
But LaRoche has spent almost his entire career in the National League, save for six games for Boston in 2009. Now it looks as if he will have to make the adjustment to regular DH duties.
It was the second big addition for the White Sox this week. They bolstered their bullpen on Tuesday with a $15 million, three-year contract for left-hander Zach Duke, who was 5-1 with a 2.45 ERA in a career-high 74 appearances this year for Milwaukee.
AP Baseball Writer Ben Walker in New York contributed to this story.
Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap