The White Sox sent utilityman Brent Lillibridge and pitcher Zach Stewart to the Red Sox for Youkilis, who leaves David Ortiz as the only remaining holdover from the team that ended Boston’s 86-year Major League Baseball title drought in 2004.
Youkilis, 33, has been limited to 42 games this season because of a lower back injury and became expendable in Boston with the play of 23-year-old Will Middlebrooks. Youkilis can play both corner infield positions and will probably take over at third base in Chicago as Brett Morel was hitting .177 for the AL Central Division-leading White Sox before going on the disabled list with a back injury.
Youkilis hit a triple in his final at-bat for the Red Sox yesterday and came out of the dugout to acknowledge a standing ovation from the Fenway Park crowd after being pulled from the game in favor of a pinch-runner. He’s hitting .233 with four home runs and 14 runs batted in this season.
“He’s legendary,” Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said at a news conference yesterday when asked about Youkilis’s ovation. “His work ethic, his dedication, his ability out on the field. He’d never come off the field with a clean uniform and always gave it everything he had. The fans here get it, there’s no doubt about it.”
Youkilis is a career .286 hitter with 133 homers and 563 RBI, and in 2007 won a Gold Glove award for his defense.
Lillibridge, 28, was hitting .175 with two RBI and seven stolen bases in 49 games this season while playing first base, third base and in the outfield. Stewart, a 25-year-old right- hander, had a 1-2 record with a 6.00 earned run average in 18 games, including one start, for the White Sox.
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