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Alexei Ramirez didn’t leave the awards season empty-handed. He might have been snubbed in the Gold Glove voting, but he came away with his first Silver Slugger Award on Thursday.
But with the good news came the somewhat bad news I’d forgotten about — it gives Ramirez another reason to opt out of the $1.1 million he’s set to earn in 2011, and enter arbitration instead. The Sox can then exercise a club option for $2.75 million. Both decisions are expected to happen, and CSNChicago.com’s Brett Ballantini ponders the idea of an extension.
At any rate, Ramirez’s raise won’t make him any less of a bargain, but it does give the Sox a little less operating room for 2011.
Speaking of which…
*Ken Rosenthal had a lot of White Sox notes in his latest column, and two of three make sense:
No. 1: He calls Arizona a longshot to sign Paul Konerko, which seems right. As great as it would be for Konerko to sleep in his own bed half the season, it doesn’t make enough sense on either side. It would basically be pre-retirement retirement for Konerko, and he’d block Brandon Allen, who is flawed but deserves a chance.
No.2: He thinks the Sox should offer arbitration to A.J. Pierzynski, because a one-year contract would be an OK way to buy time, and Pierzynski will get two-year offers elsewhere. And if you’re keeping track, he describes Tyler Flowers as a guy “who has regressed offensively while improving his defense.” That basically gives more credence to the notion that all concepts of Flowers’ true defensive ability, positive and negative, should be ignored.
No. 3: He says the Sox are checking into Rafael Soriano, which also seems like it should be ignored. He’s the cream of the closer crop, and Scott Boras is representing him.
*MLB Trade Rumors overreacted just a little bit to the idea that Kenny Williams is listening to offers for Gordon Beckham, coming up with a detailed list of potential suitors for his services. Not that it can’t be used for other purposes.
Considering Kenny Williams always says nobody on his team is untouchable and he’ll listen to anything, this seems like a huge reach. ESPN.com’s Keith Law agreed in his chat:
That rumor felt very unlikely to me – all I’ve heard from CWS and people plugged in there is that they love him. And they should. Given how they stuck with him this year when he was struggling, I have to think that what I’ve heard is true.
J.J. at White Sox Examiner has some thoughts on the issue, and it all reminds me of what Williams said about Brandon McCarthy after he dealt him to Texas for John Danks before Christmas of 2006.
“For the right deal, I think you can find a match for anyone,” said Williams during a Saturday afternoon conference call. “So you never want to use the word untouchable. We have guys close to being untouchable, where we have to be bowled over to make a move. In our minds, we were bowled over.”
Beckham’s coming off a down year, but being bowled over for Beckham would probably have to involve somebody who is even more highly regarded than Danks was at that time.
*Ozzie Guillen said in a radio interview that he’s preparing to move on without Konerko and Pierzynski, and his relationship with Kenny Williams is fine, although it will probably never be as great as it once was.
*Doug Padilla thinks Jerry Reinsdorf’s relationship with Konerko will allow the Sox every opportunity to match other offers.
*Scott Merkin details the factors in Konerko’s free agency pursuits, and recounts that Mark Buehrle thinks Konerko is less likely to return to Chicago than Pierzynski.
*Ballantini offers his list of the 10 most irreplaceable — not untouchable, of course — White Sox.
*White Sox Observer rolls along with a Dayan Viciedo review.
*Jermaine Dye wants to play again, and maybe due to the way his side mis-sold himself last year, he’s going agentless in negotiations.
Arizona Fall League:
- Peoria Javelinas 9, Peoria Saguaros 4
- Charles Leesman allowed two runs on two hits and three walks over 1 1/3 innings, striking out two.
- Jason Bour went 0-for-4 with a strikeout.
- Henry Mabee pitched two innings, allowing a run on a hit and two walks. He struck out one.