Do the Chicago White Sox have a stud prospect in Eloy Jimenez?
When Jose Quintana was a member of the Chicago White Sox, he was known for consistent pitching and not getting much help from his teammates. He was on a team-friendly contract, meaning General Manager Rick Hahn wasn’t going to move him without a significant return. That’s exactly what occurred last summer when Hahn shipped Quintana across town for prized Cubs’ outfield prospect Eloy Jimenez and talented right-handed pitcher Dylan Cease.
Hahn brought Jimenez to the Sox for one reason, offense. It is incredibly difficult to win in the American League without elite run-scoring ability. His power in the middle of a lineup can turn around a game with one swing of the bat. MLB Pipeline grades his power at a 70 (20-80 scale), meaning the fourth-ranked prospect in all of baseball has true game-changing potential.
While Jimenez has yet to play a full season at Double-A, his on-field production cannot be ignored. He went deep 19 times in just 333 at-bats last season, good for a home run every 5.7% at-bats. Jimenez’s batting average sparkled as well, as he hit .312 across Single-A Advanced and Double-A.
If you think he was productive in the power department last season, take a look at his numbers in 2018. Jimenez has already gone deep four times in only 47 at-bats, which equates to a long ball every 8.5% at-bats. An even better way to look at this would be one home run every three games, as Jimenez has played in only twelve contests so far.
So, how good can Jimenez be? Well, considering that he has yet to fully develop, it is possible that Jimenez could hit well in excess of 30 home runs per year once he gets to the big league level. Combine that with a good average and run production, and the Sox may be looking at an elite middle of the order bat for some time.
Before we wrap up, it makes sense to inform you all of this is predicated on potential. There are countless articles comparing Jimenez to elite talents such as Kris Bryant and Miguel Cabrera, however, he is going to have many struggles at the major league level before reaching their degree of success.
All in all, Eloy Jimenez is a name that Sox fans around the country have their eye on. While there is a good reason for it, they might want to be cautious about hoping he turns the franchise around once he reaches Chicago. Just enjoy the process and watch the plethora of prospects flow into the Windy City. Be patient, you might just appreciate that virtue, Sox fans.