Well, the White Sox did it. They reached the postseason in back to back years for the first time since *checks notes* ever. The division was weak but after all of the injuries and obstacles they faced, it was an impressive season nonetheless. Even if the White Sox didn’t seem ready for prime time (or 1:07 PM in the middle of the week), the team feels close to being the championship team we’ll hopefully talk about decades from now. The key to this offseason is depth. The core of the team is there and will be there for a long time. It’s about finding the complimentary pieces that can put them over the top and when injuries inevitably happen, they aren’t left scrambling.
I feel this as the true “go for it” year. If we’re sitting in the same position next year, we can slash payroll and try doing it another way. But let’s hold them to “the money will be spent”.
Write “tender,” “non-tender” or “rework/extend” after each player and their projected 2022 salaries. Feel free to offer explanation afterward if necessary.
- Lucas Giolito: $7.9M – New Contract: 8 years/$184M ($16M year 1, $24M years 2-8)
- 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
The eighth year of Giolito’s deal is what should convince him to sign for a relatively low cost in terms of salary year to year compared to his peers. Lopez, Engel and Cordero provide valuable depth throughout the roster. Goodwin would be useful but 1.7 can be spent elsewhere and Fry has not showed enough to earn another look. I would be interested in a handshake deal with Marshall but swallowing 2.3 this year for a guy who will not pitch is probably not doable.
- Craig Kimbrel: $16M ($1M buyout) – Pick Up
- César Hernández: $6M – Pick Up
OTHER IMPENDING FREE AGENTS
- Leury García (Made $3.5M in 2021) – Retain: 1 year/$4M + $5M 2023 mutual option
- Carlos Rodón ($3M) – Qualifying Offer. Don’t expect Boras to allow him to accept.
- Billy Hamilton ($1M) – Let Go
- Ryan Tepera ($950K) – Retain: 2 years/$7M
First two of these will not be surprising. Seeing them in a lot of plans because they do check the boxes.
No. 1. Kyle Schwarber (3 year/$48M): Probably a better glove than Eloy with certainly a better arm. He’ll primarily DH though since they seem unwilling to commit to DH’ing Eloy full time. Ideally they split it up between the two.
No. 2. Roberto Perez (1 year/$3M): Depth, defense and a candidate to bounce back at the plate. Familiar with the division (although so was Cesar) should aid in the transition and gives the Sox insurance if Grandal goes down for any period of time.
No. 3. Dexter Fowler (1 year/$2M): Coming off an ACL tear and a up and down tenure with St. Louis, he’s a proven vet that can fill in at all three outfield spots. He is better in the corners but provides a bat that could be useful come October. Always known as a great locker room guy that should fit in seamlessly.
No. 1: Trade Craig Kimbrel to the Chicago Cubs for Jason Heyward and $24.5M. Jason Heyward’s contract has been an absolute disaster because of the financial strain it’s put on them and the Cubs will have to eat half of his remaining deal. However, he’s still the gold glove right fielder he has been his entire career and he was dealing with injuries a good amount of last season. The three seasons prior he was an average to above average major league hitter and with the thump this White Sox lineup has, that’s good enough. He’s still only going to be in his age 32 season with two years remaining on his deal and is expected to have a clean bill of health. Robert and Heyward mitigate the defensive liability in LF and even if you want to platoon Engel against LH pitching, that’s a formidable pair. For the Cubs, they already won the Kimbrel trade and now they get a chance to flip him again. Personally for Kimbrel, we know uprooting his family is a concern and this is good for him as well.
No. 2: Trade Gavin Sheets, Jake Burger and Cesar Hernandez to the Milwaukee Brewers for Kolten Wong. Wong is another gold glove addition from the left side of the plate. He’s coming off one of the better seasons of his career. He is owed $8.5 million this year and has a fairway team friendly club option of $10 million for 2023. For the Brewers, this adds depth to their corner infield while also supplementing the loss of Wong with a hopefully cheaper version of him. Cesar is a good defender and he’s a good bounce back candidate. First base options are not great for the Brewers next year. Dan Vogelbach is a disaster. Sheets and Burger could make a really nice platoon over there for them.
Anderson SS (9.5M)
Moncada 3B (13.8M)
Abreu 1B (19.66M)
Grandal C (18.25M)
Robert CF (6M)
Schwarber DH (16M)
Jimenez LF (7.33M)
Heyward RF (12.25M)
Wong 2B (8.5M)
Bench: Garcia UTIL (4M), Perez C (3M), Engel OF (2.2M), Fowler OF (2M)
Giolito SP (16M)
Lynn SP (18.5M)
Kuechel SP (18M)
Cease SP (575k)
Kopech SP (575k)
Bullpen: Lopez (2.8M), Burr (575k), Ruiz (575k), Cordero (1.2M), Tepera (3.5M), Crochet (575k), Bummer (2.5M), Hendricks (13.3)
Payroll: $201 Million
How many ex cubs are on this roster?