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Outfielder Tommy Pham returns to major leagues with the MLB-worst White Sox

 The Associated Press  |    Apr 26th, 2024 7:40pm EDT

CHICAGO (AP) — Outfielder Tommy Pham is back in the major leagues, joining the MLB-worst Chicago White Sox on Friday for their series-opening game against the Tampa Bay Rays.

The 36-year-old Pham was in Chicago’s lineup in center field after being recalled from Triple-A Charlotte. He had signed a minor league deal with the White Sox on April 16, then went to Charlotte where he hit .294 with an RBI in four games.

Chicago entered Friday with a 3-22 record — the worst start in franchise history — and mired in a seven-game skid. The White Sox have matched Cincinnati in 2022, Detroit in 2003 and Washington in 1894 as teams that opened the season with three wins in 25 games. Baltimore began 2-23 in 1988.

Pham hit .256 with 16 homers and 68 RBIs in 129 games last season. He was traded from the New York Mets to Arizona on Aug. 1 and then helped the Diamondbacks make a surprising run to the World Series.

He hit .279 with three homers and four RBIs in 16 postseason games in 2023.

“I look at it as a blessing and as an opportunity to show the work I put in in the offseason,” said Pham, entering his 11th major league season with his eighth team. “I lost some weight to be more athletic and I’m excited for the opportunity.”

Manager Pedro Grifol said Pham will be able to help fill a gap in center for now. All-Star Luis Robert, Jr. played in just seven games before suffering a right hip flexor strain that was expected to keep him out of the lineup for six to eight weeks.

The White Sox also recalled outfielder Rafael Ortega from Charlotte, while optioning outfielder Dominic Fletcher. Chicago designated left-hander Bailey Horn and outfielder Kevin Pillar for assignment.

Pham was selected by St. Louis in the 16th round of the 2006 amateur draft. He broke into the majors with the Cardinals in 2014.

Pham is a .259 hitter with 130 homers and 431 RBIs over 10 seasons in the majors, also playing for Tampa Bay, San Diego, Cincinnati and Boston.


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