Position Not Important To White Sox's Gallagher
GLENDALE, Ariz.—At this point in Jim Gallagher's career, it doesn't matter what position he plays. Just as long as he plays well enough to someday play in Chicago.
Gallagher, 26, has made a favorable impression for the second consecutive spring training. In the Chicago's first exhibition game against the Dodgers, Gallagher made an over-the-shoulder catch in foul territory while playing first base.
Last year, Gallagher earned a promotion to select big league spring training games and responded by going 7-for-13 with five RBIs. That he bats lefthanded and can also play all three outfield positions enhances his chances of getting a major league promotion.
"If they want me in left, right, first—whatever—I'll go in there and show them I can do it," said Gallagher, a seventh-round pick in 2007. "I feel comfortable anywhere. I feel comfortable in that role. I feel I'm capable of playing at this level, so now I have an opportunity to prove it."
Gallagher has alternated between the outfield and first base, a position manned by Paul Konerko in Chicago. And he has looked comfortable coming off the bench in exhibition games, which probably will be his role if he reaches the majors.
"I feel relaxed," said Gallagher, whose batting line dipped to .246/.335/.381 for Triple-A Charlotte last season after he posted an .820 OPS at Double-A Birmingham in 2010. "It wasn't too much of a transition for me. If that's what they need from me, I'll be ready to do it."
The only other unfinished business Gallagher would like to settle would be earning his degree, after he signed with the White Sox following his junior year at Duke.
"It's hanging over my head," said Gallagher, a sociology major. "I'd like to go back, but I'm not sure, schedule-wise, when I can. But it's in the back of my mind and something I want to do."
• Outfielder Brandon Short will miss the 2012 season after having surgery to repair a torn left labrum. He sustained the injury running into the center field wall during a March 8 exhibition game against the Rangers.
• Infielder Tyler Saladino, who hadn't played above high Class A Winston-Salem, was promoted to big league camp on March 14.