No products in the cart.
When I introduced the first offseason plan template last year, our next entrant responded within an hour. I was as impressed as I was bewildered, considering there had been no notice that I had any kind of project on the way.
This time, it took him a day and a half. Will the extra time pay off?
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you…
Knoxfire30’s 2011 White Sox offseason plan
1) Would you offer arbitration to:
*A.J. Pierzynski? (Type A) — Absolutely not. He’s mediocre or below at everything he does, his handling of the staff (looking to the dugout for what pitches to call) is drastically overblown, and his “best baserunner on the team” label is one of Hawk’s biggest lies.
*Paul Konerko? (Type A) — 100 percent yes. He walks? It’s two top picks. He stays without an extension? He’s a team leader, fan favorite, quality run producer on a one-year deal (he has proven twice he plays great in contract years). Plus, the bonus: After 2011, the market becomes Pujols, Fielder, Adrian Gonzalez … not too shabby.
*Manny Ramirez? (Type A) — I liked the gamble, didn’t pay off, so long!
*J.J. Putz (Type B) — Yes, I offer in a heartbeat and try to sign him.
2) Would you pick up Ramon Castro’s $1.2 million option for 2011, or buy him out for $200,000?
Yes, pick up Castro’s option. Quality 2010 season, welcome back for maybe a slightly expanded role in 2011.
CLUB CONTROL (explain if warranted)
3) One-year contract for John Danks? If not, what would you pay to extend him?
Yes, Danks isn’t going anywhere; I kick the tires on a reasonable offer but likely go year to year with him until free agency hits. Nothing in White Sox history suggests they won’t be able to re-sign Danks when the time comes. They extended Mark Buehrle twice, Jon Garland, Jose Contreras, Freddy Garcia, got Gavin Floyd to sign, and made trades to bring on the huge contracts of Edwin Jackson and Jake Peavy. This team pays for pitching, and Danks will be the same way.
4) Would you tender a contract to Bobby Jenks?
No, Jenks is a gone goose. I love what he did for us, but his best days are behind him until someone tells him to just throw two pitches (four-seam fastball and curveball), not 19 out of the bullpen.
6) Would you tender a contract to Carlos Quentin?
Yes, Quentin is still a highly productive bat for someone who will probably only make about $5-5.5 million next year. Moving him to DH should eliminate some of his injury concerns while also eliminating a huge hole in the outfield.
7) Would you tender a contract to Tony Pena?
No, Pena isn’t worth more than a minimum contract. We have minor leaguers who can fill his spot as a long man. Carrasco had a better season and would have made less, and the Sox turned him away, so going with Pena in 2011 wouldn’t make any sense.
FREE AGENCY: WHITE SOX
8) Which of the following impending White Sox free agents would you attempt to re-sign, and at what price:
- Paul Konerko
- A.J. Pierzynski
- J.J. Putz
- Manny Ramirez
- Omar Vizquel
- Andruw Jones
- Freddy Garcia
- Mark Kotsay
I attempt to resign PK: two years, $20 million, third-year team option for $13 million with a $3 million buyout. It keeps him on the books for $10 million in 2011, and allows for the possibility of a two-year, $23 million contract, which is very reasonable. Everyone needs to remember 2007-2009 PK, not ’10 PK. Vizquel, I copy his 2010 contract. Jones, I offer $1.5 million, and if he doesn’t accept, so be it. Garcia, I offer $1.5 million; hopefully he takes it. Putz is going to be a tough sign. I offer one year, $5 million and really hope that’s enough to get it done.
FREE AGENCY: OUTSIDE HELP
9) Which positions are in the most dire need of an upgrade?
Sox need to address getting a legit left-handed bat in their lineup. They can do this at catcher, DH and outfield, and realistically, their best chance is probably in the OF spot.
10) Name three (or more) free agents you’d consider, and at what price.
Lets make an assumption we can resign Putz, Omar, PK, but lose Jones and Garcia. Payroll is a huge problem, so cheap options are all we have. I look into…
*Melky Cabrera, switch hitter, young, controllable, good defense in all three outfield spots, perfect fourth outfielder.
*Justin Duchscherer. He has been hurt, but an incentive-laden deal for a guy who has over a 40 percent groundball rate is something to like.
*Joe Beimel. I make an offer of one year, $2-3 million. He is still allergic to home runs and he would give the flexibility to keep Sale starting in the minors or to allow Thornton to close while still keeping two lefties available in the pen for match-up purposes.
11) Name a couple (or more) realistic trades that could improve the Sox.
Dream Trade Scenarios: I move a higher-priced starter (Buehrle or Jackson) in a deal for a troubled young outfielder (Colby Rasmus, Matt Kemp, B.J. Upton), obviously including some prospects (Flowers, Morel, Viciedo, etc.) to try and facilitate such a deal.
More realistic targets:
*David Murphy from the Rangers — over an .800 OPS, controllable, plays an OK outfield.
*David DeJesus from the Royals — solid bat and corner outfielder, and he makes a little bit of money, so at some point the Royals may look to move him.
*Brett Gardner — Speedy top-of-the-order top hitter could become available if the Yanks acquire Crawford.
*Chris Coghlan of the Marlins — another left-handed-hitting outfielder who is young and affordable, coming off a down year after his Rookie of the Year campaign. A closer look at his numbers says he is due for a bounce-back, as his line drive rate actually was higher in 2010 than 2009, but his BABIP came down 30 points. He also was playing on a bad knee that required an offseason scope.
*Ryan Doumit of the Pirates — he should come semi-cheap due to his contract ($5.1 million in 2011 with options in 2012 and 2013), he switch-hits and can play first, catcher, and DH. He hits very well from the left side (.830 OPS last year, .800 career) and would help us juggle days off for PK at 1st, then a platoon at DH and catcher with Flowers, Quentin and Castro.
12) Sum it all up in a paragraph or nine, and give a ballpark estimate of the total payroll.
The Sox are cash-strapped, and 2011 is going to present a very difficult offseason for Kenny Williams and company. I encourage them to be fiscally responsible in anticipation of some big-name bats coming to the free agent market in 2012. I wouldn’t discount any possibilities — this team will shed $36.75 million just on losing Juan Pierre, Scott Linebrink, Jackson, and Buehrle. Even with raises and bringing back one of those two starters, that’s probably about $18-20 million in payroll to play with next offseason.
Arizona Fall League:
- Surprise 7, Peoria 0
- Jared Mitchell went 1-for-3 with a strikeout.
- Eduardo Escobar went 0-for-4, and was caught stealing.
A couple of reports from Arizona, starting with good news from Kevin Goldstein:
Shortstop prospects who really are shortstops are a rarity, and it’s surprising the Escobar doesn’t warrant more attention. The 21 year-old Venezuelan has above-average range and a plus-plus arm, and his bat started to show some signs of life in 2010, as Escobar showed a surprising ability to drive balls into the gap. In a system desperate for prospects, as a good defender with some offensive value, Escobar is the real deal.
Reports from the Arizona Fall League on rehabbing White Sox prospect Jared Mitchell are mixed, at best. He has been healthy enough to play, which is the best sign, but the torn tendon in his ankle does appear to be impacting his play. Through Tuesday he was batting .184 in 11 games, and had struck out in 11 of his 38 at-bats. Any impact on Mitchell’s speed is a bad thing, as the ability to get on base and create havoc made him projectable as a leadoff man, but he has shown that speed only once so far, on a triple. He’s 0-for-1 on stolen-base attempts.
Mitchell hasn’t played regularly in regularly 13 months due to a serious injury. He’s also never played above A-ball. His competition? A lot of quality High-A and Double-A talent, most of whom has played an entire season already, and without serious injury. I wouldn’t expect him to hit the ground running, literally and figuratively.