No. 11 included in 11th 2011 plan

Now that Kenny Williams is in the process of making the “must-make” decisions in the exclusive bargaining period, we could call it the 11th hour for offseason plans.
So it’s fitting that we have our 11th plan, which comes a day after the Sox re-signed their No. 11, Omar Vizquel. It comes courtesy of Randy.  (Note: Apparently he shares the last name with another fellow who provides Birmingham news for me. My mistake.).
The good news? His plan is already $250,000 cheaper than he anticipated.
1) Would you offer arbitration to:

  • A.J. Pierzynski? (Type A)
  • Paul Konerko? (Type A)
  • Manny Ramirez? (Type A)
  • J.J. Putz (Type B)  Yes

2) Would you pick up Ramon Castro’s $1.2 million option for 2011, or buy him out for $200,000?
CLUB CONTROL (explain if warranted)
3) One-year contract for John Danks?  If not, what would you pay to extend him?
I’d try to get him to sign something in the range of a three-year, $23 million deal ($5.5M/$7.5M/$10M). Otherwise, try and get him signed on a 1 year deal around 6 million.
4) Would you tender a contract to Bobby Jenks?
5) Would you tender a contract to Carlos Quentin?
Yes, there aren’t a lot of reasonably priced, options with his upside in the outfield on FA.  Offer a two-year $9.5 million ($4.25M/$5.25M) guaranteed with a bunch of incentives based on PAs and performance.
6) Would you tender a contract to Tony Pena?
Nope.  With five starters under contract, I’d rather bring Freddy Garcia back for the swingman/long relief role.


7) Which of the following impending White Sox free agents would you attempt to re-sign, and at what price:
*Paul Konerko: Yes, 2 years 28 million, though admittedly, part of that is because of “face of the franchise” and other “intangibles”.  I don’t think a lot of the more casual fans would cope with losing both AJ and Konerko.
*A.J. Pierzynski: No
*J.J. Putz: No
*Manny Ramirez: No, for christsakes, he’s Manny Ramirez.  If you sign him to a one-year deal, he’ll quit on you by June.  Have we learned nothing from the Red Sox and Dodgers?  I don’t care how deceptively decent he was in the two months he was with us.  At his core, he’s still Manny Ramirez.
*Omar Vizquel: Yes, one year, $2 million.
*Andruw Jones: No
*Freddy Garcia: Yes, one year, $1.5 million.
*Mark Kotsay: No

8) Which positions are in the most dire need of an upgrade?

3B, RF, DH… not that I have some magnificent plan that maintains a reasonable salary.
9) Name three (or more) free agents you’d consider, and at what price.
John Buck – 1 year, $2.2 million.
Brad Hawpe – 2 year, $9 million.
Kelvim Escobar – 1 year, $1 million.
10) Name a couple (or more) realistic trades that could improve the Sox.
I can’t think of a trade chip we have that wouldn’t downgrade us once it was removed.  I’m not comfortable penciling Freddie Garcia in as a fifth starter, but if you were, you could re-sign Pena for less than $2 million and try and move either Gavin Floyd or Edwin Jackson for some salary relief, but that’s never seemed to be the KW way.
And finally:
11) Sum it all up in a paragraph or nine, and give a ballpark estimate of the total payroll.
I think, in order to keep payroll from increasing too much, you’re going to need to start at least one of Tyler Flowers/Brent Morel.  As a team, I don’t think there’s any way you can start both and suceed.  I’m not even sure you can get away with starting one, but I chose Morel because there are a lot more average catchers that seem to be hitting free agency than average third basemen.  Also, since you’ve got Teahan and Vizquel, if Morel fails, it’s not the end of the world.  If you go full bore with Flowers and he stinks, you’ve got a gaping hole at catcher.
I threw out Kelvim Escobar because I needed a third free agent.  He might work as a reliever, I don’t know.  I doubt there’ll be a ton of interest in him after he missed all of last year, and he could be a cheap arm if nothing else.
Hawpe can serve as a 3/4-time right fielder/DH.  I can’t imagine he’s completely fallen off the cliff as he showed last year.
I named Sergio Santos closer, but I would be expecting that this group would do a closer-by-committee approach with Santos, Matt Thornton, and Chris Sale all taking turns, as I don’t think any one of them could handle the job on their own the whole year.
Total budget ends up being $114.795 million, which I feel is still too high, but I’m not sure what else to cut.  I suppose that’s why I’m no Kenny.
SP    Buehrle    14
SP    John Danks    5.5
SP    Gavin Floyd    5
SP    Jake Peavy    16
SP    Edwin Jackson    8.35
Swing/Long    Freddy Garcia    1.5
Closer    Sergio Santos    0.4
LHP    Matt Thornton    3
LHP    Erik Threets    0.4
RHP    Scott Linebrink    5.5
RHP    Chris Sale    0.4
RHP    Kelvim Escobar    1
C    John Buck    2.2
C    Ramon Castro    1.2
1B    Paul Konerko    14
2B    Gordon Beckham    0.445
3B    Brent Morel    0.4
SS    Alexei Ramirez    1.1
LF    Juan Pierre    5
CF    Alex Rios    12
RF    Brad Hawpe    4.5
DH    Carlos Quentin    4.5
IF    Mark Teahan    4.75
IF    Omar Vizquel    2
OF    Alejandro de Aza    0.4
Minors    Dayan Viciedo    1.25
Proejcted lineup:
1    Juan Pierre L
2    Gordon Beckham R
3    Paul Konerko R
4    Alex Rios R
5    Brad Hawpe L
6    Carlos Quentin R
7    Alexei Ramirez R
8    John Buck R
9    Brent Morel R

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Yeah, Hawpe should only be getting a one year contract. Terrible RF plus no production for a year and a half should mean that no one goes two years on him. If you want to give him a one year deal with a club option on a second, that’s feasible. Could end up being a bargain if he figures out what the heck went wrong.


Buck is a good option to have in mind. But he’s coming off the best season of his career and was tied for third-most home runs among MLB catchers. I think he’s going to get a raise of more than just $200,000.