April storm puts damper on White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu’s parade

SHARE April storm puts damper on White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu’s parade

Jose Abreu. (Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)

The bizarre storm Saturday rained — and snowed — on Jose Abreu’s parade.

Before the White Sox’ scheduled game against the Tigers, Abreu was supposed to receive his Silver Slugger Award in a ceremony at Guaranteed Rate Field. But that didn’t happen.

The game was postponed after the National Weather Service issued a winter-storm warning for the Chicago area that was expected to stay in effect until at least 1 a.m. Sunday. That means Abreu will have to wait until later this summer to receive his hardware.

The game was rescheduled as the early part of a day-night doubleheader July 3. The first pitch for the makeup game is scheduled for 1:10 p.m., and the regularly scheduled game will begin at 7:10 p.m.

Abreu said Friday he was honored to receive the award, despite his struggles in 2018. Abreu, who missed time in August and September with a testicular torsion before an infection ended his season prematurely, hit .265 with 22 home runs, 78 RBI and a .798 OPS last season. Despite those numbers being career lows, Abreu still was honored with the Silver Slugger, which means a lot to him.

‘‘[The award] is the payoff for all the hard work I put in,’’ Abreu said through a translator. ‘‘It also means a lot for this organization because I represent this organization. This is the organization that gave me a chance to play in the majors. . . . I wouldn’t be here without this organization.’’


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Abreu, who last year became the first Sox player to win an All-Star Game fan vote since Frank Thomas in 1996, has been a solid offensive force for the Sox since his rookie season in 2014. But he brings so much more value to the team than just being a consistent hitter.

‘‘The question is, what hasn’t he done?’’ reliever Nate Jones, the Sox’ longest-tenured player, said of Abreu. ‘‘He’s a great leader, a great teammate. He works hard. Obviously, he’s very determined and wants to be good at his craft.’’

Abreu’s veteran presence has been invaluable to the Sox during their rebuild. Abreu, who is in the last season of the six-year, $68 million deal he signed in October 2013, hasn’t been shy about his desire to stay with the Sox, but he said he hasn’t had any discussions with them about his future.

‘‘I know we are all just focused on the season,’’ said Abreu, who is hitting .481 with two homers and 14 RBI in the Sox’ last six games. ‘‘We’re just trying to win games. And probably at the end of the season, we’ll figure something out. I’ve been very open about my intentions and desires to stay with this team. I’d like to stay with this team until the end of my career. But we’ll see what happens.’’

General manager Rick Hahn said the Sox have had internal discussions about Abreu’s future, but they likely won’t do anything until after the season. He said he doesn’t think Abreu’s uncertain future is a distraction.

‘‘Jose knows how we feel about him, and we know how he feels about us,’’ Hahn said. ‘‘There’s a time when the business side of this thing takes a little more focus than the playing side. We will wait until things are appropriate and deal with everything then, in all probability.’’

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