Results: Kenny Williams' trade grades

See how the White Sox general manager's 10 years of trades shook out; will Carlos Quentin get dealt in Year No. 11?

Thanks to the 184 people who participated in the Kenny Williams trade survey — and especially the 182 people whose answers I didn’t have to throw out because they weren’t all 1’s and/or 10’s.
Now that the news cycle has entered a lull, let’s take a look at the community results:

A few observations:
*Time is a general manager’s friend. Many of you said it in the comments, but there were a lot of trades worthy of 5’s, and you can see that in the results. Thirty-three of Williams’ 54 trades fell between a 4 and a 6, which illustrates how hard it is to “win” a trade.
Sometimes it works toward extremes, though. Had we taken the temperature of the Rowand-for-Thome trade after 2006, I’d say it’d score a lot closer to 5. The White Sox failed to make the playoffs, and Fenceface Rowand became a fan favorite in Philadelphia. But because Thome kept producing while Rowand declined into albatrossdom, the trade broke into the “good” ranks.
*2005 helped a lot. I would call the Keith Foulke trade one of Williams’ three worst trades. It was positively Swisheresque in how it was forced by managerial disdain, and it was a visible downgrade in every way but the previous year’s save total. But because Neal Cotts immaculately timed his one good season, much is forgiven.
The same can be said for the Geoff Blum trade. Not counting the playoffs, Blum’s name would probably be close to Horacio Ramirez’s on this list, because they both didn’t help much during the regular season. That’s fine by me. Luck happens.
*Had blogs existed in 2001, the James Baldwin trade might have scored a bit lower, because Williams traded for the wrong guy. From a Chicago Tribune story on July 27 of that year:

[Jeff] Barry hit .290 in Triple-A and had a .163 average in 49 major-league at-bats in ’95 and ’98. The Sox originally thought they were getting Class-A right-hander Jonathan Berry , but a “miscommunication” problem between the two teams led to Williams accepting Barry instead. Williams said the Sox would “honor” the trade despite the mixup on an apparent last-minute throw-in.

*The two trades that got a grade from everybody: Thome-Rowand, and Freddy Garcia-Gavin Floyd.
*And speaking of 5’s, I think it’s awesome that the Jake Peavy trade was the only one to fall smack dab in the middle of the spectrum. It seems like everybody is giving it one more year before making up their minds.
*************************
On the current trade front, we have ourselves a bit of a sourcedown between Joe Cowley and everybody else.
The subject matter: Carlos Quentin.
Cowley tweeted on Saturday that the Sox were “actively shopping” Quentin, later elaborating that they were looking for a package along the lines of what Williams received for Carlos Lee.*
Dave Van Dyck went straight to the source, and Williams emphatically denied that he was looking to deal Quentin for anybody. Cowley took joy in ripping the Trib for getting an obvious answer.
Bruce Levine’s source, however, said the Sox were not dangling Quentin. Rather, Williams listened to overtures from three teams, and didn’t hear an offer he liked. Later, he told another GM that they weren’t shopping him.
Whether it’s Cowley or Levine who’s right, this is an awful lot of noise around one player. It’s not by any means a solid bet, but if I were forced to wager, I’d guess that Quentin isn’t going to be with the Sox when April rolls around.
*Speaking of the Lee trade, while it ranked fairly high on the scale, the average was dragged down by 27 scores of 4 or lower. So basically, their looked at Williams’ gamble like Lou Brown looked at Willie Mays Hayes’ basket catch:

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Jim Margalus
Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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knoxfire30

Im still shacking my head on the initial Swisher trade. That was a great move, the sox use of swisher killed his season and their knee jerk reaction to him walking around in a jock strap compounded the mistake by selling him for ten cents on the dollar. 3 prospects, for an extremely reasonably priced, potential all star, swithch hitting obp machine, who plays multiple positions and was way on the happy side of 30. Those guys dont grow on trees.

pmj3358

I totally agree. I remember being very excited about having an OBP guy for reasonable salary locked in. He got off to a poor start and just like that, he was club house enemy #1. It was like the Sox organization only had room for one loud-mouthed, goof ball…

tdogg

Yeah I think folks are letting the 2nd trade guide the 1st. I still like the first Swisher trade. Sox brass just screwed up afterwards. Of course Swisher didn’t exactly make it hard.

soxfan1

Jim – Great survey!!
How about another one rating Ozzie on several managerial dimensions over his tenure??

djroomba

Talk about raking the Mariners over the coals, no wonder that franchise is in the dumps. And I have to disagree with the love on the Lee for Podsednik trade. There is no doubt about how important the run at the WS was with Scotty, but that was a serious slugger for young prospects trade that never panned out. Strangest about that is I would have loved him at DH for the last 6 years, however the NL wanted the portly LF to make a mockery of the field.
Chicago has elevated that speedy bum to an unreal superstar status.

djroomba

Ah Dustin Hermanson….
Good point on the vaule.

djroomba

That wasnt sarcastic, sometimes the only thing seen in the future is the trade itself.

buford

Both Swisher trades appear to the ones that leave the worst taste in the mouth of Sox fans.
For comparison, it’s interesting to look at players traded by other current GM’s that give their fans “Swisheritis.”
TX Jon Daniels – Adrian Gonzalez, Jon Danks
OAK Billy Beane – Tim Hudson, Carlos Gonzalez, Andre Ethier
ATL Frank Wren – Atlanta’s 2nd Texeira trade / Angels
[John Schuerholz made the Texeira / Rangers trade. He also traded Adam Wainwright .]
FL Mike Hill – Miguel Cabrera
PHI Ruben Amaro – Cliff Lee
SF Brian Sabean – Francisco Liriano, Joe Nathan
MIN Bill Smith – Johan Santana, Matt Garza
BOS Theo Epstein – Bronson Arroyo
NY Brian Cashman – Jose Contreras
CHI Jim Hendry – Josh Hamilton (Rule 5 Draft trade with the Reds)
PIT Neil Huntington – Jason Bay
Even though he is a year removed as Mets GM :
EXPOS Omar Minaya – Cliff Lee, Grady Sizemore, Brandon Phillips
I’m sure there are more.
But looking at the caliber of these players vs. Swisher might put Kenny back on your Christmas list.
Or at least stop stuffing coal in his Christmas stocking.
Or maybe not.

chisoxt

I did not like the intitial Swisher trade, nor the second one. Recall that at the time of the first deal, we were looking for a centerfielder since Torii Hunter had just rebuffed the Sox. Yes, Nick is a decent offensive player (3-4 WAR). But, while it is true that he can play the OF and first base, center field (the very position we were trying to fill at the time of the trade) is his poorest position and he was and is well known as an all around ass-clown.
At the time of the deal, Gio Gonzalez was a prospect that many had high hopes for. You have not heard the last from Fautino De La Santos who went down to injury a couple of years agor. The As even got decent production from Ryan Sweeny for a couple of years.
I can see your point about Nick’s value offensively, but it felt to me at the time of the trade, that this was an instance of overpaying for a mid level veteran player. I wished that the Sox instead would have made a run at Mike Cameron who was available at the time.

knoxfire30

he was coming off 865 and 835 ops seasons, about to enter his prime and headed to a hitters park… not sure what is mid level about that, then look at his first two seasons in new york and his one season with the whitesox is the obvious exception to the rule that he has been a very productive player

john

I see that Scot Gregor is now saying the Sox are going to choose between Viciedo and Morel. Um, why? It seems to me their most logical trade piece, and someone that none of the beat guys have really mentioned, is Tyler Flowers.
Is it that insane to keep a 22-year old prospect down in AAA just in case someone like Dunn or Konerko get hurt and/or Morel can’t hack it?

knoxfire30

more good news at some point brian bruney will probably be throwing to him! ha

lanuters

I am surprised that people disliked the deal that brought Griffey here. I hated it when it happened, but he’s the only guy who gets Cuddyer at home in game 163 and for the uselessness that we gave up for that one moment, it wasn’t a bad deal. It helped us, even if was only a little, to win a division in 2008.