The tear down is over. Now it is time to build a championship team. Though that won’t likely bear fruit in 2019, this is a very important winter to lay the foundation for 2020 and beyond. And if everything goes right, the Sox could surprise this year.
My first move won’t happen, but it should. Ricky Renteria will certainly get one more year with this team, even though he doesn’t deserve it. An unstated goal of .500 should be a minimum for consideration for an extension. Plus, Omar Vizquel will probably get a job next year after going through the process this year. I would like to see the Sox nab him before he goes somewhere else.
But, this move should happen. Todd Steverson has shown next to nothing in his tenure with the Sox. He was brought in to improve OBP, but if anything, it has gotten worse. I would offer the job to Jim Thome, though I don’t think he’s ready to travel full time with the team. So if he refuses, offer the job to Frank Thomas. I’m pretty sure the Big Hurt would take it. Two Hall of Famers with gawdy OBP numbers- plus the White Sox connection that Jerry so highly values.
Now for the rest of the story.
- Jose Abreu, $16M- TENDER
- Avisail Garcia, $8M- TENDER
- Yolmer Sanchez, $4.7M- TENDER then trade
- Carlos Rodon, $3.7M- TENDER
- Matt Davidson, $2.4M- TENDER
- Leury Garcia, $1.9M- TENDER
- Danny Farquhar, $1.4M- NON TENDER
- Nate Jones, $4.65 million/$1.25M buyout- DECLINE
- James Shields, $16 million/$2M buyout- DECLINE
OTHER IMPENDING FREE AGENTS
- Miguel Gonzalez (made $4.75 million in 2018)- LET GO
- Hector Santiago (made $2 million in 2018 — added)- LET GO
No. 1- Manny Machado (12 yrs- $400 million. $120 million in 1st 3 years. Opt outs after 3,5,7)
It’s time for Jerry to offer a record setting contract if he wants a championship in his lifetime. $40 million a year for the first three years will certainly get his attention, and after winning the World Series in 2021, he won’t be going anywhere.
2. Nathan Eovaldi (3 years, $48 million)
A relatively young mid-rotation piece to use as insurance in 2020-21 if one or more of the young guys struggle again. Plus, if he can stay healthy, a pretty good option in 2019 that won’t further break the bank.
3. Joe Kelly (2 years, $16 million)
May have to go 3 years on him to secure his services. He’s a veteran flame thrower to add stability to the bullpen with all the young arms. Plus he could be the uber-reliever who could give us the multiple innings at a time.
4. Another bullpen arm (Nate Jones?)- $1.5-2 million
Another cheap arm to compete for a spot if several young guys falter.
Just one, but a biggie.
Nick Madrigal, Yolmer Sanchez and Spencer Adams for Whit Merrifield
Merrifield if perfect for the White Sox. Not a free agent til 2023, the Sox would have him for 4 years. Solid OBP, 2nd base defense and great speed at the top of the lineup to go along with Moncada. He will cost a lot, so the Sox need to include Madrigal. Think of Nick Madrigal in 3 years. His ceiling would be Whit Merrifield. So let’s just get the real thing.
This would allow Moncada to make his move now, and be comfortable by 2020. I have no doubt he could be a solid center fielder. Now with the top of the order of Moncada, Merrifield, Abreu, Machado and Eloy, that should strike fear in opposing pitchers. Plus Timmy, Moncada and Merrifield back to back to back will give opposiing teams headaches on the bases.
Here’s the 25-man and line-up:
Eloy (after 3 weeks of Delmonico), LF
That’s 11, so the rest of the bench is Engel and Leury or Rondon.
That leaves 12 pitchers- but with Davidson as number 13!
Stephens/Guerrero/Covey winner (Cease by mid-season)
Fulmer or anther low cost reliever like Nate Jones
I thought about signing McCutchen to replace Avi, but my payroll is already over the limit.
Including the buy-out, that leaves the payroll at $117 million, well over the planned budget. But a lot of the heavy lifting will be done here. This team could be very competitive, in my opinion. What do you think?
Interesting idea with merrifield. To everyone who is bringing back Avi and trying to be competitive (not just you), why not bring in Lonnie chisenhall? Seems like he shouldnt be too expensive, and should be productive if he can stay healthy.
Like I said, I thought about replacing Avi with McCutchen, but my payroll was too high already. Chisenhall would not be a bad option. I’m just banking on (hoping) for a good year from Avi in his walk year. He will certainly have the incentive to perform in his last year before free agency. And he shows flashes of very good play, though way too infrequent thus far. Getting 20 homers from the 7th guy in the lineup wouldn’t be bad.
Love the Merrifield idea, but I forget, can they trade Madrigal yet, or do they have to wait until he’s been in the org for 1 year? I’m not for sure on the rules.
The rule has been changed. They can now trade them after the World Series in the year they were drafted.
This is the first time I’ve seen or heard Merrifield mentioned as an option either here or elsewhere. It’s an interesting idea, though I’m not thrilled with the idea of giving up Madrigal for him. I’d rather give up one of the OF prospects. What worries me is we’d likely have to overpay for the Royals to send Merrifield to a division rival.
But it’s a very interesting idea.
If we get 4 years of Merrifield, then it essentially blocks Madrigal for 4 years, and he becomes expendable, at least thru 2022. I’m just wondering if my proposal will be enough to get Merrifield.
Love the Merrifield trade!
Any off season plan that includes the Sox signing Machado gets my nod.