After the White Sox agreed to a deal with Jose Abreu earlier this month, one of Rick Hahn’s first actions was to call veteran Paul Konerko.
The White Sox general manager said Tuesday he wanted Konerko, who has played for the club for the past 15 seasons, to have as much information as possible as he decides whether or not to play in 2014. A free agent, Konerko is weighing whether or not to retire or play one final season. But just because the White Sox signed Abreu to a six-year, $68-million deal and have Adam Dunn under contract through next season doesn’t wipe out the possibility of Konerko returning, Hahn said.
“This signing doesn’t preclude us from bringing Paul back,” Hahn said. “But we’re not quite there yet. We’re going to sit down in the coming weeks and talk about where his mind is at and how that fit potentially would play out going forward.
"Paul and I spoke in September specifically about Jose and the possibility of signing Jose. And the day the deal was consummated Paul was one of my first calls, just so he would have all the information as he went through his process.”
Konerko hasn’t yet made a determination on his future. Hahn said the two sides would likely sit down in November.
Reached by phone Monday, Konerko told the Chicago Tribune he’s not ready to make a decision. As for if the Abreu signing would play into his decision, Konerko didn’t know.
“I guess I really don’t know what the story is behind that,” Konerko said. “I’ll meet with them (to find out).”
White Sox manager Robin Ventura said if Konerko returns along with Dunn and Abreu he’d find a way to make it work.
“You figure out a way to do it,” Ventura said. “I can’t sit here and say exactly how it would work, but if they’re on a roster you find a way to make it work and keep guys sharp and playing.”