We have established ourselves as the team to beat in the AL Central. Now it’s time to see if we can contend in the playoffs. Last year, we mentally penciled in Madrigal and fixated on finding a left-handed RF. Now that Hahn has removed Madrigal from the equation and Tony has demonstrated that some of our previously non-OF young talent can in fact play there, it gives me a different perspective. What if we could sign the best left-handed hitting middle infielder in baseball instead?
- Lucas Giolito: $7.9M TENDER
- Reynaldo López; $2.8M TENDER
- Evan Marshall: $2.3M NON TENDER
- Adam Engel: $2.2M TENDER
- Brian Goodwin: $1.7M NON TENDER
- Jimmy Cordero: $1.2M TENDER
- Jace Fry: $1M NON TENDER
- Craig Kimbrel: $16M ($1M buyout) REWORK
- César Hernández: $6M DECLINE
I don’t see the point of picking up $16M and trying to trade that in the event he pitches lights-out in the first half of next year. I would see the point of giving him 2 years/$8M with like $5-8M/year in performance bonuses and mutual option on the 2nd year. Then you keep or trade him depending on circumstances. He should understand that you don’t get paid like Hendriks unless you perform like Hendriks.
OTHER IMPENDING FREE AGENTS
- Leury García (Made $3.5M in 2021) LET GO
- Carlos Rodón ($3M) QUALIFYING OFFER
- Billy Hamilton ($1M) LET GO
- Ryan Tepera ($950K) RETAIN
If Rodon takes the QO, roll with it. I’m not penciling him into my plan because I don’t think he takes it. If he does, you ask Jerry to go over budget for one more year of Carlos.
Thank you for your service, Leury. We might try to resign you if we can’t sign Seager.
No. 1: Sign Corey Seager for $5 yrs/$150M. This lineup needs balance on both sides of the plate and in terms of bat-to-ball skills. Seager brings both. Let Moncada, Anderson, and Seager fight out which position they’ll play. Roll with a cheap kid for utility infielder (starting with Romy, then Yolbert Sanchez and Jose Rodriguez). I really don’t care how many years the Sox give Seager if they can sign him.
No. 1: Trade Burger and Collins for quality minor league pitching depth. I don’t believe that the return for these guys are MLB-ready players, but Burger and Collins could play for non-playoff teams looking for cheap MLB-ready options. I would look for minor league relievers that catch Ethan Katz’s eye. We might need them later next year. We don’t need Burger and Collins.
My strategy was to obtain one more superstar that brings balance to the lineup– and I did it with an infielder instead of an outfielder. At the same time, I balanced this cost by leveraging more use of young position players in bench or low-leverage relief roles. I believe there might be another wave of young surprises out of our minor league system. It’s time for Micker Adolfo and Carlos Perez to show us something. Romy will get a chance, but what if Yolbert Sanchez or Jose Rodriguez turn out to be MLB-worthy? Maybe Bennett Sousa could be the next intriguing lefty out of the pen. I think their low wages are what makes getting Corey Seager possible on a White Sox budget.
Sheets, Vaughn and Engel have shown us they can play at the MLB level. It’s time to see if they can continue their development– or in the case of Engel– stay off the IL.
I believe a lineup that includes Seager, a more developed Sheets/Vaughn, and a healthy Engel have a chance against teams like Houston.
My estimated payroll came in at $183M. I’ll tell Jerry the extra $13M are coming out of Hahn’s salary as the penalty for Kimbrell minus Madrigal/Heuer.
Position Players (lineup): ($104M)
SS Anderson ($9.5M)
2B Seager ($30M)
CF Robert ($6M)
1B Abreu ($18M)
3B Moncada ($13.8M)
LF Jimenez ($7.3M)
DH Sheets ($575K)
RF Vaughn ($575K)
C Grandal ($18.25M)
Position Players (bench): ($4M)
C Carlos Perez ($575K)
OF Adolfo ($575K)
OF Engel ($2.25M)
INF R Gonzales ($575M)
Starting Pitching: ($45.9M)
RHP Giolito ($8.25M)
RHP Lynn ($18.5M)
RHP Cease ($575K)
LHP Keuchel ($18M)
RHP Kopech ($575K)
I’m rolling with Kopech here instead of Rodon. If Rodon walks, Kopech has earned a shot. I also don’t think Keuchel is toast quite yet.
RHP Hendriks ($13M)
RHP Kimbrell ($8M)
RHP Tepera ($1.75M)
RHP Ruiz/Cordero/Foster ($575K)
RHP Lopez ($2.75M)
LHP Bummer ($2M)
LHP Crochet ($575K)
LHP B Sousa ($575K)