Podcast: Looking at the 2021 White Sox roster with Dan Szymborski

Guest: Dan Szymborski, FanGraphs

With the Chicago White Sox “Financially tapped” and might be done making significant additions this offseason, Dan Syzmborski stops by to discuss the current roster outlook.

  • Is having Zack Collins as the backup catcher a good idea?
  • Is it necessary for the White Sox to add another starting pitcher?
  • How big of an impact could Nelson Cruz make if he signs with the White Sox or Twins? 

Dan provides his answers to those questions and a few from Patreon supporters in this episode.

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Josh Nelson
Josh Nelson

Josh Nelson is the host and producer of the Sox Machine Podcast. For show suggestions, guest appearances, and sponsorship opportunities, you can reach him via email at josh@soxmachine.com.

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Trooper Galactus

Kinda funny how this applies to both Hahn and Pederson simultaneously.

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Last edited 2 years ago by Trooper Galactus

Rosario to the Indians and breaking: Nolan Arenado is traded to the Cardinals.

I wonder what’s gotten into the Cubs, Cards, and Indians over the last week. Reports were they were selling not buying. Maybe the owners got in on GameStop early.


Let’s see if the MLBPA signs off on the Arenado deal, as it involves him deferring money.

Rosario took $8 million from Cleveland. That’s less than what the Sox gave EE last year, and Rosario’s a lefty bat good for 20 HR at DH and with corner depth. Cleveland’s still in a hole offensively, but he immediately becomes the best bat in their outfield.


I’d be surprised if the PA vetoed the deal. If both teams and the player are cool with it, it would seem to be a bad PR move in the middle of labor negotiations.

But then again, I’m almost entirely ignorant of the potential ramifications of such a deal.


It’s rare, but that’s exactly what happened to the Alex Rodriguez trade Boston and Texas completed in 2003. The union is understandably leery of players giving back value on the high-end contracts, and I imagine that stance hasn’t softened as tensions with the owners have grown.


Over the past 45 minutes I have convinced myself the Sox should fill all three remaining needs with a Rockies trade. They traded Arenado so maybe they’ll blow it all up.

Pitcher: Kyle Freeland, Jon Gray or German Marquez

Position player: Ramiel Tapia or Ryan McMahon

Catcher: Elias Diaz

So an example would be Sox trade for Gray, McMahon and Diaz.

Realistically, only one of the pitchers would excite me. I am so scared to roll into 2021 with such lack of depth that I am convinced that Ryan McMahon and Elias Diaz will save the day. Scary!

Sidenote: McMahon hits the ball hard and I do like defensive versatility. He would not fit in well as a true DH. Trading for Tapia would allow Eloy to DH.

Yes, I’m aware this wouldn’t be a good idea.

Trooper Galactus

I think the Rockies are most motivated to get rid of payroll, particularly long term. If the White Sox were willing to take Blackmon along with Marquez, they might be able to get them for a similarly low prospect cost to what the Cards got Arenado for.


Blackmon will earn $21.3 million in 2021, $21.3 million in 2022, and $13.3 million in 2023. If the White Sox couldn’t afford to sign cheaper free agents like Brantley or Cruz on a 2-year deal, no way they’ll take on Blackmon’s salary via trade.

Trooper Galactus

If the Rockies would pick up as much of Arenado’s tab as they did, they’ll do it for Blackmon too.


Dan saying “there’s no such thing as a bad one-year contract” made me think Dan doesn’t watch the White Sox very much.


The lack of depth is terrifying 6 of your 8 position players have missed significant playing time with at least a semi major injury in the last year or two. I believe 8 or 9 of your 13 man pitching staff has had at least 1 major arm injury…. stopping the adding at 130 mil or whatever is basically criminal. The sox have done all they can to avoid burying the Twins and Indians in the division. The fact that if the Twins bring back Cruz they would still be the favorite in the division is bonkers. If the whitesox win the division or more this year, jerry reinsdorf deserves none of the credit, he certainly doesn’t deserve the support of us fans.


Rodon coming back via reports…get pumped


Fifth starter slot solved!

(Have the words “pending physical” ever loomed larger?)

Last edited 2 years ago by asinwreck

1/30/21 Carlos Rodon


Spring training open competition for starters 4, 5, and 6. Kopech, Cease, Lopez, Rodon, Steiver, Crochet, et al thrown in. maybe 2 or 3 of this group can be packaged to trade for another need such as catcher