When last we saw former Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier, he had been released by the Texas Rangers and signed to a minor-league contract by the Chicago White Sox — another team that believed it could restore his swing with a stint in the minors. And maybe they have.
Frazier will return to the majors on Sunday with the White Sox, according to Darryl Van Schouven, beat reporter for the Chicago Sun Times, who tweeted on Saturday night: “Hearing Clint Frazier will be in White Sox uniform Sunday. Frazier is batting .375/.478/.839 with 7 homers and 1.317 OPS in 16 games at Triple-A Charlotte.”
Frazier has made changes in his batting stance and approach at the plate. White Sox minor-league hitting coach Cameron Seitzer recently told The Athletic that Frazier has gone from a closed stance to slightly open, which has allowed him to stay on a pitch longer.
“Obviously there’s a lot of talent, there’s a lot of tools,” Seitzer said. “He’s explosive. He generates a lot of torque and pairing that with good direction, he’s had some serious results so far. He’s really opening up the field and not just hitting the fastball. He’s been able to adjust to off-speed as well.”
He added: “A big thing for (Frazier) too is just staying aggressive, being on time and driving the fastball to right-center. … Obviously, it’s been a game-changer for him.”
Frazier, 28, was released by the Rangers on April 28 after struggling against minor-league pitching at Triple-A Round Rock, where he hit .250 in 15 games with one home run in 52 at-bats. The Rangers said it was a mutual decision. Frazier had a May 15 opt-out deadline.
Frazier signed a non-roster deal with the Rangers before spring training and hit .234 during the spring with two homers, five walks and 16 strikeouts — which wasn’t enough to make the Rangers’ big-league club. He accepted the Triple-A assignment, but it was another dead end.
Once one of the game’s top prospects, Frazier played his first five seasons with the Yankees, batting .239 with 29 homers and 97 RBI. He was released before the 2022 season and signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Cubs, but he played only 19 games, batting .217 with one RBI. He signed with the Rangers, but that didn’t work out, either.
Frazier’s best season with the Yankees was in 2019, when he batted .267 with 12 homers and 38 RBI in 69 games, 59 as a starter. He began 2020 as a regular for the first time, but quickly played his way back into a platoon role.
Frazier feuded with the Yankees media, challenged team rules, ticked off veterans by acting like a star and, as a self-proclaimed misfit, didn’t fit into a tightly conforming clubhouse. The Yankees finally cut ties in November 2021 by releasing Frazier.
Eight days later, Frazier signed a one-year, $1.5 million contract with the Cubs. He got off to a slow start, batting .143 with no homers and no RBI in his first 10 games before being sidelined: He was on the injured list from April 20 to May 28.
Frazier was designated for assignment on June 10 after reporting to Yankee Stadium ahead of a Cubs-Yankees’ series opener. He passed on free agency to remain in the Cubs’ organization as a non-roster Triple-A player and has been bouncing around since.