The White Sox optioned Mercedes to their alternate training site Monday. The White Sox already have three other healthy catchers on the 30-man active roster, so Mercedes was never destined to stick around long in Chicago after receiving a callup Saturday. The 27-year-old backstop is unlikely to see extensive action with the big club in 2020 unless both Yasmani Grandal and James McCann are simultaneously sidelined.
Mercedes was recalled by the White Sox on Saturday. The 27-year-old hit a strong .317/.388/.581 across the two highest levels of the minors last season. His path to playing time isn't obvious, as he's primarily a catcher, but the White Sox already have Yasmani Grandal, James McCann and Zack Collins ahead of him at the position. He's made a handful of appearances at all four corner positions throughout his minor-league career but will likely be primarily a bench bat. Tim Anderson (groin) hit the injured list in a corresponding move.
The White Sox announced Monday that Mercedes will be included as part of the team's 60-man roster pool. Chicago added a pair of catchers in Mercedes and Zack Collins to its pool of available players in advance of the MLB season resuming in late July. The White Sox are expected to lean heavily on Yasmani Grandal and James McCann to handle nearly all the starts behind the plate, but Mercedes could get a look if either or both of the aforementioned players succumbs to an injury at some point.
Mercedes has been reassigned to Triple-A Charlotte, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Mercedes, all 5-foot-11 and 235 pounds of him, was a darling of spring training. Known for his big swing and exuberance, Mercedes hit .381 and launched four home runs. He was hoping to land a roster spot as the 26th man, but the White Sox are expected to go with someone more versatile when they break camp.
Mercedes went 1-for-2 with a grand slam home in Friday's spring game against Cleveland. Mercedes has made an early splash in the Cactus League, going 4-for-9 with a pair of home runs. Friday's homer was a 400-foot-plus shot to go along with an even longer blast against the Dodgers on Monday. He still has a ways to go defensively, but the White Sox added him to the 40-man roster during the offseason and are clearly intrigued by his bat. The stockily built catcher has 83 home runs across 617 career minor league games.