Trooper Galactus Spends Jerry’s Money

It’s time to spend the damn money already.  I have taken my SSS plan and tweaked it a bit, but most of the moves remain the same.


  • Nomar Mazara: Non-Tender, never wanted him anyhow.
  • Carlos Rodón: Non-Tender, if he takes a minor league deal, great.
  • Lucas Giolito: $5.3M Tender, extend if possible.
  • Reynaldo López: $1.7M Tender.  Let’s see if a new manager and pitching coach can unlock the potential.
  • Evan Marshall: $1.4M Tender. One of the most pleasant surprises of the rebuild.
  • Adam Engel: $1.4M, extend if possible.  I still think his peak is as a fourth outfielder, but he’s morphed into a pretty damned good one.
  • Jace Fry: $800K Tender and trade, see below.
  • Yolmer Sánchez: $1.5M Tender.  I originally let Yolmer walk and rostered Mendick, but I think I prefer Yolmer’s steady glove and accept his offensive limitations over whatever middling ceiling Mendick’s bat has.


  • Edwin Encarnación: $12M DECLINE, lol
  • Gio González: $7M ($500K buyout) BUYOUT, can’t rely on him.
  • Leury García: $3.5M ($250K buyout) PICK UP; he’s an injury risk, but if he could stay on the bench like he’s supposed to half the time, maybe that wouldn’t be such a problem.  You aren’t gonna find a more versatile and capable utility player for that price anyhow.


  • Alex Colomé (Made $10,532,500 in 2020) LET GO; I’d only keep him at $5-6M for 2021, and I think he’ll do better than that on the open market.
  • James McCann (Made $5.4M in 2020) LET GO; I’d love to retain him for 3/24 or something like that, but even in a robust catching market with J.T. Realmuto and possibly Gary Sanchez, I expect there to be enough demand for McCann to price him out of our range, and I’m not trading Grandal for peanuts just to re-sign him.
  • Jarrod Dyson (Made $2M in 2020) LET GO; minor league deal at best.


Here’s a first: Pick your manager and pitching coach, with any elaboration.

  • Manager: Matt Quatraro, bench coach of the Tampa Bay Rays. He’s young-ish (46), has a wealth of managing and coaching experience in the minor leagues, and is the right hand man on the most forward thinking team in MLB.  His predecessor, Charlie Montoyo, took a young Blue Jays team to the playoffs in 2020 in the brutal AL East, and I’ve liked what I’ve seen of Quatraro to want to give him his shot in the big chair.
  • Pitching coach: I said James Shields, though to be honest this is probably going to be more along the lines of “whoever Matt Quatraro wants”.


No. 1: George Springer (Five years, $100 million). A center fielder who will be bumped to right field or left field by Luis Robert.  Despite the stink of the trash can scandal on him, he’s continued to hit just fine since then and should have two or three prime years remaining before a big decline.  Price tag revised downwards because I think this offseason will suppress free agent prices, but this still gives him a good number of years at a salary a bit above the QO price.

No. 2: Marcus Semien (four years, $48 million) Semien had a bad 2020, which should help keep his salary down a bit, though I really don’t know if this is enough (I originally posited 4/60 but have revised that down…who knows if either figure is plausible).  Semien would fill in at 2nd and be our immediate backup at shortstop, bringing added power and MVP-level potential like he showed in 2019.

No. 3: Marcus Stroman (three years, $36 million with incentives based on starts and vesting options for fourth and fifth years) Did not pitch in 2020, but hoping that’s helped keep his arm fresh and made him hungry to get back in the game.  Originally wanted to sign Bauer but his price tag would probably cost me another signing or two and I just think he’d be toxic with the mix of players we have.  Price revised down from 3/48.

No. 4: Jose Quintana (one year, $8 million with vesting option for second year at $12 million) Revised down from 2/20 guaranteed, Quintana brings another lefty to the rotation, a familiar face who soldiered through the worst of times, and a starter who, despite struggles since being traded, is still a more reliable back-of-the-rotation option than we can currently muster otherwise.

No. 5: Tyler Flowers (one year, $3 million, $5 million option with $250k buyout) Yeah, not the most popular name around here, but he’s been pretty damn good for the Braves and, though his bat is back down to being what we remember, his framing still grades out as a plus and I’d like to not lose that when Grandal gets a day off.  Ideally, we won’t see him for more than 50 games.


Trade Nick Madrigal, Micker Adolfo, and Gavin Sheets to the Texas Rangers for Joey Gallo.

A year ago this probably would probably have been laughable, and maybe it still is, but Gallo only has two years of control remaining for a team in a full-on rebuild and has a profile of such severe extremes (massive K rate, massive HR rate, terrible BA, high SLG) that it’s hard to see a king’s ransom being paid for him. Madrigal provides the headliner; generally considered a top-100 prospect and a proven .300 hitter at the MLB level who I consider expendable with the signing of Semien. Adolfo adds some risky upside, though if they demand Rutherford instead I would not object (heck, toss him in as well, I really don’t care). Sheets is a solid throw-in who I personally think very highly of and wish him the best, but we have no room for him. If there is more competition for Gallo than expected, I would consider Jonathan Stiever, Zack Collins, Andrew Dalquist, and Matthew Thompson to be on the table, but I’m not parting with Kopech, Vaughn, or Dunning.

Note: If they can get Gallo to sign an extension, look into it. Adolfo was the only minor-league outfielder I had much faith in becoming useful any time soon.

Trade Jace Fry, Yolbert Sanchez, Konnor Pilkington, and $1 million to the Baltimore Orioles for Paul Fry

Okay, I’ll admit I’m just enamored with the idea of a Fry-for-Fry trade, but hear me out. Paul Fry had a decent season in 2020 after a poor showing in 2019, and has decent but unexceptional peripherals. At a minimum, I see him as a decent middle relief option who brings low-90s heat with a plus slider and okay command who is tougher on right-handed hitters than left-handed, but can reliably complete a full inning regardless. He has four years of control remaining and is entering his age-28 season, so we should be getting him at the apex of his career. On our end, we’re basically giving them Jace Fry for free as a ready replacement by sending his salary along with him and giving them two unexceptional but worthwhile prospects in Sanchez and Pilkington. Other potential options from our end are Yermin Mercedes, Blake Rutherford, Luis Gonzalez, Jake Burger, and Tyler Johnson, though I’d have some reservations about the last two.


1B – Jose Abreu ($18m)
2B – Marcus Semien ($12m)
SS – Tim Anderson ($7.25m)
3B – Yoan Moncada ($6.8m)
COF – Joey Gallo ($7m)
CF – Luis Robert ($7.83m)
COF – George Springer ($20m)
C – Yasmani Grandal ($18.25m)
DH/LF – Eloy Jimenez ($4.33m)

Yup, I’m moving Eloy to DH and making him a part-time OF. Sorry, but he’s just absolutely wretched out there. With Gallo, Robert, and Springer, you have three guys capable of playing CF who would likely be the best defensive setup in the league. Their infield setup has two shortstops in the middle infield and a highly capable third baseman as well (and perhaps a Gold Glove first baseman?). Every spot in that lineup has 20+ home run power, baby.


RHP – Lucas Giolito ($5.3m)
LHP – Dallas Keuchel ($18m)
RHP – Marcus Stroman ($12m)
LHP – Jose Quintana ($8m)
RHP – Dane Dunning/Michael Kopech/Jonathan Stiever/Dylan Cease ($600k)

Giolito is the unquestioned ace at this point, with Keuchel and Stroman solid options in the 2 and 3 spots. Quintana is there to eat innings and ideally return to the form that made him good enough to net Eloy and Cease in trade. The fifth starter is basically whoever can win it out of camp, with Cease and Kopech providing ace upside. All of them still have options so they can be rotated in and out of the roster as necessary.


LHP – Aaron Bummer ($2m)
RHP – Codi Heuer ($600k)
LHP – Garrett Crochet ($600k)
RHP – Matt Foster ($600k)
LHP – Paul Fry ($600k)
RHP – Jimmy Cordero ($600k)
RHP – Evan Marshall ($1.4m)
RHP – Reynaldo Lopez ($1.8m)

I understand if people want to part with Lopez at this point, but it’s worthwhile to see if he can stick as a long man, opener, or single-inning guy and employed strategically by a manager who has the mental agility to do so. If they choose to part with him (or include him in one of the above trades), Jimmy Lambert is next up. As for Crochet, with his clock already started, I say use him out of the bullpen to build him up for a potential move to the rotation. He clearly belongs at this level. I’m going with eight relievers because of the quality of the lineup versus the uncertainty of the fifth starter spot and at least some durability questions from most of the rotation.


C – Tyler Flowers ($3m)
UT – Leury Garcia ($3.5m)
IF – Yolmer Sanchez ($1.5m)
OF – Adam Engel ($1.4m)

This is the weakest part of the roster, but even as limited as each of them is every one has some sort of upside. Flowers is a plus framer, Garcia can be employed anywhere on the field and is a plus runner, Engel is a plus defender and runner, and Yolmer brings a Gold Glove at second base and competency at SS and 3B. If the bullpen is doing well and doesn’t need the eighth man, Andrew Vaughn is waiting in the wings, though I would prefer he work his way up the minors most of the season.  Also, Zack Collins is still around for emergency catching duties, but I just don’t think he can hit at the major league level, which leaves him no real role other than hope.

The total bill for this offensive juggernaut? A whopping $162.96 million. Unrealistic? Probably, but ask me if I care. We’ve watched the White Sox pocket money like crazy even with attendance down, and when the team finally showed signs of life and brought up prospects the fans started packing the stadium again. This roster gets them not only back into the playoffs, but likely a division crown and attendance in excess of 2.5 million assuming fans are back in the stadiums full bore. Regardless, the time is now, the money needs to be spent, stop hoping and praying that prospects will figure things out.

If you want a somewhat more realistic payroll projection, nix the George Springer deal and remove his $20 million from the roster, dropping them to $143 million for the season, putting Gallo in RF, and keeping Eloy in LF (or starting Engel there), but that means likely having to use Collins and perhaps Luis Gonzalez off the bench until Andrew Vaughn makes his way through the minors.

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Trooper Galactus
Trooper Galactus

Just another South Side Sox refugee; have followed the team pretty closely since 2000. Otherwise, avid video game collector and part-time warming cushion for my calico feline.

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I for the most part really like this plan. Signing Semien to play 2B is certainly different, and not sure it’s something he’d be open to. I also would like to see a Fry for Fry trade though.

Eagle Bones

I like the idea of grabbing someone like semien or lemahieu and dealing madrigal for help at another spot if there’s only so much dough to go around. I think you’re low on the price for stroman but who knows with everything going on how prices will shake out.

Papa Giorgio

Love the plan….but ain’t no way we get that payroll. I think.