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G-BRAVES NOTES: Slugging OF Gartrell signs with White Sox

After not getting a major league shot with the Braves, former Gwinnett slugger Stefan Gartrell is going back to the White Sox in hopes of getting one.

Gartrell, acquired by Atlanta from Chicago early in the 2011 season, signed a minor league contract with the White Sox that carries an invitation to major league spring training.

Gartrell, who turns 28 on Monday, made the AAA All-Star Game while with the G-Braves in 2011 and won the home run derby. But the right-handed hitting outfielder never got a call-up to Atlanta despite hitting 26 homers and driving in 94 runs that season.

The native of San Francisco wasn't as productive in his second season with the G-Braves, tailing off to 20 homers and 55 RBIs in 2012.

Gartrell spent five years in the White Sox minor league system after being drafted out of the University of San Francisco. He started the 2011 season with International League South rival Charlotte before being acquired by Atlanta for Gwinnett in April.

Twenty-one players

get spring invitations

Atlanta will have a crowded spring training roster, with 21 minor league players getting invitations in part because the Braves will have regulars missing at times for the World Baseball Classic.

The invitees are heavily players that were with Gwinnett at some point last season. They include pitchers Sean Gilmartin, Yohan Flande, Dusty Hughes, Ryan Buchter and Daniel Rodriguez, catchers Jose Yepez and Matt Kennelly, infielder Joey Terdoslavich and outfielder Jordan Parraz.

The player who gets the most attention, though, may be catcher-outfielder Evan Gattis, who put up impressive power numbers last season with Class A Advanced Lynchburg and Class AA Mississippi.

Pitchers and catchers report to Florida on Feb. 11 and position players join them Feb. 14. The first full-squad workout is the next day.