P.O. Sox: Buying at the deadline? Cueto’s cost? Why Noah Schultz?

Let’s spend the last idle day of the All-Star break by clearing out the mailbag. Thanks for those who support us on Patreon, and if you’d like to send us question for P.O. Sox, be it in audio or text form, you can do so by signing up at the 3 WAR tier.

Are the Sox most likely going to be buyers, sellers, or stand pat for the trade deadline. Who most likely comes/goes in the buyer/seller scenarios?

— Alec S.

Assuming the Sox do well with the upcoming less challenging schedule, what one or two spots do you think Hahn needs to add at the deadline? Seems Harrison is looking like his recent play is satisfactory at 2B so they can focus elsewhere, like bullpen help, lefty bat, or starter depth.

— Don

It seems like they should be buying unless the worst-case scenario hits them hard this weekend with four games over three days in Cleveland. It’s just hard to envision any real earth-shattering additions, because any deal that would be worth forking over a Colson Montgomery could probably be beat by other teams who have equally touted prospects closer to the majors.

My guess is that they look for lefties, be they relievers or outfielders. Nothing too crazy, somebody in the David Peralta/Tyler Naquin/Kole Calhoun tier. Maybe Anthony Santander if they’re feeling frisky.

With Yas needing to DH and play first at times and Vaughn needing a spot in the line-up as well as Eloy having trouble staying healthy playing the outfield, should the Sox be looking to move Eloy say to Cincinnati for Luis Castillo?

— Mark

My initial thought was “huge overpay,” but then again, it’s kinda similar to the idea of trading Nick Madrigal for a reliever with 1½ seasons of team control. In that case, if the Sox thought that Madrigal could only absorb so many season-ending surgeries before it started affecting his big-picture feasibility, then it might’ve been a good move to get whatever they could for him, especially when he had nothing else to give the 2021 White Sox. Sure enough, he’s hitting just .222/.263/.250 this year around groin and back injuries. The trade gave the White Sox nothing, but it might not give the Cubs a whole lot more.

I can see the response from the other side being, “I can’t believe we got Eloy Jiménez for a rental!” But Jiménez stops being an automatic bargain after this year. He’s owed at least $27 million through 2024, with two club options totaling $35 million if he earns them. That might be too rich for a small-market team, especially if they’re sensitive to the idea that the White Sox want out from under this contract for a reason. (That reason would be “replacement-level production the last two seasons.”)

The Schultz pick, as Josh said on the draft show is weird. He almost certainly won’t help this current contention window. But what truly bothers me is even if Schultz performs in the minors his trade value will vary greatly team by team. 6’9″ starters are just so rare.

— Kevin

I’m glad the Sox are prioritizing youth in the draft now, but why draft a pitcher who will be a major project when the franchise is currently failing at developing high school arms? Why not draft another HS position player with the success of Montgomery?

— Matt

My guess is that future trades are probably the furthest thing from a scouting director’s mind when he’s making a first-round pick. In the most likely scenarios, it’d take years for a prep selection to register on other teams’ radars, so they may as well draft the guy they think they can develop.

Now, that leads to the point Matt made when saying that the White Sox don’t have any kind of real success with developing high school arms. That much is true. The counterpoint is that the White Sox are never going to improve until they learn by doing. The rebuttal to that counterpoint: Given the low hit rate on prep pitchers, is that improvement worth pursuing?

They saw somebody who has Chris Sale-like qualities right in their backyard, and it seems like the draftniks understood what the White Sox are going for, even if it does upset his position in the rankings. I’d be curious if the White Sox have learned anything from the unimpressive initial results from the Thompson/Dalquist/Kelley group when it comes to building up teenage pitchers, even if Schultz is a completely different figure.

Bob mentioned cliques in the locker room, if you had to guess what would be the groups in the White Sox locker room.

— Benny

I’d guess there are divides along the usual lines, the big one being language, with maybe subgroups for country of origin. For players born in the States, it’s regional, which often overlaps with lifestyle/religion. My guess is that the White Sox don’t have any unusual rifts resulting from these groups. If they look like they’re not having fun, it’s probably because a lot of them are hurt.

Also, Dallas Keuchel just got DFA’d by the Diamondbacks.

Rodon is the 5th best P in MLB using bbref WAR! For the love of Josh, We didn’t even make him a QO! Do you think not bringing back Rodon will end up being one of Hahn’s worst moves? He can opt out after this year so maybe we’ll bring him back. 🤷‍♂️

— Dave

I wouldn’t even call him the worst decision of that winter. Like I said at the time, I understood the general idea that the White Sox didn’t like their chances of getting an encore from Rodón while paying him six times as much. The problem was that if the White Sox wanted to be unencumbered when it came to the open market, then they shouldn’t have exercised Craig Kimbrel’s option, because that encumbered the hell out of any bigger solutions.

Granted, Hahn’s allergy to any move that reduces his treasured flexibility makes me skeptical that he would’ve made a grander move to shore up the outfield, but having Kimbrel’s $16 million on the books for month certainly limited their mobility. Besides, Johnny Cueto has given a lot of what Rodón gave them for the same dollar amount, so I’m choosing to view it through that lens.

Would the Sox consider Re-signing Johnny Cueto and if so, what would that deal look like?

— Dan

Prior to this year, Cueto had pitched 54, 16, 63* and 115 innings over his previous four seasons with the Giants, so I’m not taking any of what he’s given the White Sox for granted. That said, if he does somehow get to 140 innings of above-average pitching despite his late start, I could see him signing for the standard $11 million or so that respected veterans get (Corey Kluber, Zack Greinke among recent examples). The question is whether he’d be looking for a second year versus the higher AAV.

(*2020 season; extrapolates to 170).

Why do the Sox continue to play with a short bench instead of putting guys on the injured list? I know the replacement options in the minors are not great but they need to stop putting themselves at a disadvantage when every game counts.

— Joe

I think this was a bigger issue early in the season when guys like Yoán Moncada and Yasmani Grandal were struggling for weeks while healthy options like Jake Burger or Seby Zavala could’ve given Tony La Russa players who don’t look like they’ve started a lengthy rehab stint in the Arizona Complex League.

But now, some of the depth is banged-up, which basically means that they have Lenyn Sosa to cover the infield, and Adam Haseley for the outfield. With key divisional series bracketing each end of the All-Star break, I’m guessing the Sox wouldn’t want to have Haseley in place of Jiménez or Robert if they could avoid it.

As the second half opens, Robert’s status is the single news item I’m most interested in, and there isn’t a close second, because lightheadedness has so many different causes and durations. I’d hope the All-Star break allowed the training staff to put a more accurate ETA on his return, and the Sox will have somebody ready for his spot on roster if he’s not likely to appear in the team’s first series.

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Jim Margalus
Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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soxygen

Great PO Sox today, Jim.

A couple of quick thoughts:

1. As someone who enjoys Eloy’s personality, if he is traded I hope it is to someplace like Cincinnati – if he gets right, he could put up some monster numbers in that park, which would mean a lot of “hi, mom!” footage.

2. Re Rodon: we really could have benefitted from the likely draft choice attached to the QO. The Sox just don’t do a good job maximizing opportunities to acquire additional talent/re-allocate assets. I’d like to see them improve in that regard – trade veterans at peak value, make QOs, acquire competitive balance picks, etc. Those are the kinds of things that teams do when they are trying to sustain success on finite budgets.

soxfan

The Rodon QO decision is so hard to evaluate after the fact considering the counterfactuals that one has to assume in order to evaluate the possible outcomes.

It would’ve been impossible to predict that Rodon was going to have the year he’s having giving his injury history (and there’s an open question of how long he’ll be able to keep it up since he really broke down post ASG last year). Obviously, if you know he’s going to have the 5th highest WAR you make the QO, but there was no way to know that.

The next unknown is what the market for Rodon would’ve looked like with the QO penalty attached. That is, would SF have made the same offer if they knew they’d lose Carson Whisenhunt, their second pick ranked 16/18/40 depending on who you listen to, and international signing pool money.

Again, if they knew he was going to be 5th in WAR they probably take that risk, but Rodon is probably having a top quartile (if not top decile) possible outcome this season, so I don’t know if it’s reasonable to evaluate the decision based on hindsight rather than the most likely scenario.

That said, the most likely scenario wouldn’t have been that bad. So as Jim notes the problem isn’t not extending the QO, but then failing to optimize resource allocation once the team decided not to do that.

HallofFrank

Yes, I agree. Not offering the QO to Rodón was one is defensible. But, like Jim pointed out, Hahn then bungled the Kimbrel option and didn’t spend the $ well. So it makes not offering a QO look worse.

Still, fans act like it was just a free 2nd round pick, and it wasn’t. Rodón could have accepted the QO (if offered). If we can guarantee the success would carry over to the Sox, that’s probably worth it no matter what happens from here on out. But we’ve always known Rodón can dominate in short spurts. The reason they let him walk, I think, was because they didn’t want to deal with the injury concerns/fatigue in the playoffs. That’s a lot of money to pay someone if you don’t think they’d make a playoff roster.

asinwreck

My issue with that decision was the same as the previous year’s decision to not offer a QO to McCann. Both were attractive enough free agents that they were going to attract competitive 2+ year offers from other teams, and for a contender who will never have competitive balance picks, the compensatory picks would have helped with Hahn’s stated claim to develop wave after wave of minor-league talent. Lacking those picks, Mike Shirley has to gamble more than usual with one of the industry’s smallest bonus pools.

Speaking of Noah Schultz, do you think that the success the team (and particularly, Ethan Katz) had in getting Lucas Giolito right gave them confidence they could develop a very tall pitcher?

soxfan

Again, I think this assumes the offers would’ve been the same with the QO-penalty and without. The projections pegged Rodon at around 2 WAR and 70ish innings this year. Maybe the Giants are smarter than projectors and they expected to get closer to 4 WAR out of Rodon. 4 WAR at $22M is just about break even in terms of surplus value according to last year’s free agent signings. So would San Francisco have made the same offer if they knew the “premium” they were paying was the loss of their 2nd round pick? They couldn’t have reasonably expected a 5+ WAR season to recapture that value, so they’d have had to really not value their draft picks to make the same offer with the QO penalty.

a-t

The projections are not really the right thing to look at with Rodon. The talent is obvious, and there isn’t a metric in the world that didn’t love what he did in 2021 when healthy. There’s no trickery, just raw power pitcher dominance: huge backspinning ride on the biggest lefty starter fastball in the game, a vicious slider, and an occasional changeup effective bc guys have to cheat on the FB to hit it.

He was a binary gamble: if healthy, he is a Cy Young candidate. If he isn’t, obviously he’s not effective if even on the field. He got paid like there’s a 60-65% chance he stays healthy enough to deliver a lot of those Cy Young quality innings, which was what I thought he was probably worth.

HallofFrank

Like said, you’re assuming Rodón gets those offers, still. That’s far from clear, I think. The QO clearly suppresses offers (though, to be fair, it’s not clear how much). The 2nd round pick is a nice prize. But it’s not worth spending $18m poorly—if you think spending on $18m on Rodón is spending the money poorly. The Sox did, I think (though, I grant they spent the money poorly).

asinwreck

Yes, I consider the QOs in light of the other available talent on the free agent market. McCann was one of two starting catchers that year, the less expensive option to Realmuto as two NL East teams had needs at catcher. He was an excellent bet to surpass the QO on the market given the demand, even with the draft pick penalty.

Rodón’s AAV was above the QO, and as a starting pitcher with Cy Young votes, the idea that he wasn’t going to be worth the draft pick plus at least $20 million to somebody was unlikely, even with the arm issues. His underlying performance meant he’d have more suitors with the QO than, say, Dallas Keuchel in 2019, but the Sox were too nervous about the potential of QO acceptance to get anything back for either player. These were draft picks to be had even if the Sox had no intention of bringing these players back.

That the Sox picked up Kimbrel’s option and let Rodón walk without compensation indicates how poorly they have a sense of how well their players are valued around the league.

HallofFrank

I don’t think it’s that unlikely. He got $22m AAV without a QO. If we agree that the QO would have suppressed his market, then we can assume he would have gotten less than that. How much less? I don’t know. But no one does.

It comes back to this, for me: if the Sox didn’t think Rodón was worth $18m, they shouldn’t have offered it to him. Do you agree with that?

There was, I think, at least a chance that Rodón would have accepted the QO, if offered. When the budget is tight, you can’t hang $18m out there, hoping it doesn’t get accepted, all for the reward of a Competitive Balance B pick. Comp B picks aren’t that valuable, that they’d be worth that risk.

But, to reiterate, picking up Kimbrel’s option was a bad move and they did a terrible job spending the money elsewhere. So, I’m not just here to defend Hahn. But I do think the people who think this was an obvious mistake are just off base.

Wayne

The next unknown is what the market for Rodon would’ve looked like with the QO penalty attached. 

That only matters for the Agent to help the player make a decision. QO acceptance or decline come right away. His market may have cooled with a QO (probably not player opt outs). But it only matters if Boras thought Rodon would have a similar offer.

John SF

I think we also have to remember that not getting a QO itself depressed outside evaluation of him.

The QO penalty is worth $1.5-7m or so, depending on team and contract and context (per Fangraphs prospect value estimates).

But not getting a QO, after putting up one of the best seasons in baseball, is a public vote of “no confidence” from the team that should best be able to predict future results.

I wanted the Sox to give Rodón a qualifying offer. The Giants are my national league team, and yet I was apprehensive about them signing him for around the same price.

This isn’t a contradiction. The fact the Sox did not offer to keep him made me doubt Carlos’ health and abilities.

We don’t know what offers Carlos would’ve gotten with the QO. I actually suspect they would have been better.

Last edited 4 months ago by John SF
Shingos Cheeseburgers

I can’t wait to hear about the cliques in Arizona where the relievers refuse to hang out with the rest of the team during the games.

metasox

Well, fans were sure ready to eat that stuff up. Examining whether players were smiling enough and such.

knoxfire30

I still cant imagine a scenario where the sox sell. Too much invested in this group not to make a run this year and at least the start of next. The only time to sell would be a failed start to 2023 when you would have tough choices (depending on how they are playing) on what to do with Lynn, Giolito, Hendricks, Kelly, Gravemen, Grandal etc

for additions in 2022… obviously a left hand power hitter who actually can play the outfield would be great, 2nd basemen, and the bullpen really needs another lefty

Right Size Wrong Shape

Boras is saying that some contenders are checking in on Conforto now that there’s no draft pick compensation attached to signing him. I wonder if the Sox are one of them, and how healthy he is.

upnorthsox

You mean so he’s suddenly healthy now? It’s a miracle!

Right Size Wrong Shape

Well, I think getting healthy was probably the reason he got shoulder surgery.

upnorthsox

Sorry but I’m still skeptical of the “injury”.

soxygen

So you think the shoulder surgery was a ruse or a red herring?

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
upnorthsox

I’m saying the timing of its reveal and the timing of its recovery are…..convenient. Was there an injury at some point? Probably. Is that what has prevented him from playing this year? Again, I’m skeptical.

a-t

Eh, I doubt it, not with a reported shoulder injury. I can see why you might think Boras would say his guy was hurt rather than say nobody thought he was worth a draft pick, but a shoulder injury in a hitter is a serious concern— see Bellinger, Cody

soxfan

Unless we’re 10 back by the deadline, I agree, there won’t be a selloff.

But I could easily imagine having to trade guys on the current roster to make the team better. Jimenez is the easiest to imagine not being on the team given his defensive limitations, the need for Vaughn to play somewhere, and the fact that he’s barely played this season. Reese or Savala are at risk of being moved although I personally would try to hang onto both for the time being.

And if we are 10 games back at the deadline, I’d at least listen to offers for Giolito. He’s not going to be a bargain next year and if you can get a premium because he’s more than a rental and you feel like you can replace him in free agency next year, then I’d have to at least think about it.

a-t

I think that would probably be selling low on Giolito given his off year so far, no?

soxfan

Like I said, I’d listen to offers. And it would be predicated on 1) knowing that he wouldn’t sign a long term deal and 2) that his arbitration salary could be reallocated to someone else in free agency. Maybe someone makes a Berrios-like offer, maybe they don’t, but it’s just good business to see if anyone’s willing to overpay.

a-t

I mean, what Lucas has said is that he wants to test free agency. It’s not that he wants to leave; it’s that he wants to be fairly compensated to stay. Same with Zach LaVine and the Bulls. If the Sox give Gio the bag, he’ll be in black and white for a while yet.

soxygen

If “you feel like you can replace him in free agency next year” but are unwilling to sign free agents to market rate/length deals, then what are you really doing? Freeing up money to spread around on a bunch of cheap guys on one year deals hoping one of them turns into the next Rodon or Cueto signing?

And I don’t say that to argue with your point, it’s just that, as a strategy, if that’s how you operate then you really should be making a qualifying offer (1-yr) to a guy like Rodon because then you either end up with a decent pitcher for one year, or you end up getting a draft pick you can use to replenish the cost-controlled talent pipeline.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
NDSox12

The deadline is < 2 weeks away. The Sox would probably need to lose every game between now and then to be 10 games out. Oops, did I say that out loud?

calcetinesblancos

Giolito is interesting. This year makes it look like he’s not worth a huge contract. But if you hold on to him, he has every motivation to have a good walk year so if you plan on contending it’s very tempting to keep him around. Right now the best move is to probably hold on to him, hope he rebounds, and if you’re out of it next year at the deadline you might be able to flip him for useful pieces.

The reason I still think the Dallas Keuchel signing was a good move was that it was worth the risk due to the risk not being that great. The AAV wasn’t crazy, and the commitment wasn’t super long. As much as I hate that the Sox never go for the big fish, if you are signing someone with questions marks you don’t hand over a huge contract.

Just John

Because I’m a fantasy fan, I’ve been pretending that the trade was swung to bring Soto to the south side. What was the cost?

Vaughn + Kopech + Montgomery + lottery?

a-t

I don’t really think that gets it done. Kopech will be in arb and hasn’t yet proven he can be an effective starter on a reasonable workload, Vaughn’s good but he’s a 1B. That plus the next like five top prospects… maybe?

soxygen

I will say as someone who lived in DC for the team’s first decade and a half, I really hope that the Nats prioritize major league ready talent. They worked hard to establish an identity and a fan base. Several years of competitive baseball, culminating in a championship in 2019, had really helped them do so. I’d hate to see them go into a prolonged rebuild down there because it risks undoing so much of what they built, especially with the now ascendant O’s competing in the geographic market, and the Mets now under Cohen’s control.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
calcetinesblancos

I would never do that trade. I don’t see how that makes the team better.

shaggy65

Yes, Soto is great, but he also isn’t cheap and that will affect his offers.

I think Jimenez + Burger + Sosa would be enough to get it done. Two major league ready players with another on the doorstep.

And boy would Soto be a PERFECT fit on this roster!

gibby32

The White Sox likely are not in the conversation (or “seat at the table”, if you prefer) with respect to any acquisition of Soto, but if that were to get it done, they should have done it yesterday.

Qubort

Reports are teams are looking to move 3 or 4 top 100 prospects. Injured Eloy with Burger and Sosa would be laughed at as a package.

SocksO’Graham

I assume there is no word on Robert.

Joliet Orange Sox

I’d like to use this comment thread to encourage my fellow Sox Machinists to upload a profile picture. It takes less than a minute and adds a little variety around here and also makes it easy to associate’s a poster’s comments all with the same person. I think I have a pretty coherent idea of @Soxygen’s views about the team because that picture of Zapata makes his comments distinct. I also know that seeing @asinwreck’s picture of Bill Veeck means that there is a pretty fair chance I’m going to learn something reading the comment. There are many other profile pictures I recognize. Some of you may recognize the orange and blue (I – L – L !) diamond Sox logo that is my profile picture.

All you have to do is click on the icon next to “Howdy, Username” and scroll down to where you can upload an image for a profile picture.

HallofFrank

Done. Good call.

soxygen

A million times this

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
SocksO’Graham

Done

Joliet Orange Sox

@SocksO’Graham Is that Paul Newman?

fustercluck

why yes, I do believe that is one “Fast Eddie” Felson

(The Color of Money, Jim.)

ParisSox

Done

ForsterFTOG

👍

Kelly Wunsch N' Munch

👍

Trooper Galactus

When I first joined this site I think I spent 30 minutes figuring out how to do this because of exactly what you’re saying. That and I have tons of Galactus avatars I like using.

andyfaust

done

Joliet Orange Sox

Is that Paul Newman?

As Cirensica

100% in favor of this. Maybe I will change mine

Willardmarshall

The All-Star break would be a lot less boring if it ended with the trade deadline….

dongutteridge

I love the idea of trading Eloy if they could get a good player in return.

Worst off-season moves in order:

1. Kimbrel option picked up
2. Joe Kelly signing
3. Rodon no QO

upnorthsox

4. Not picking up Kyle Schwarber’s option year.

This is related to their Worst off-season moves 2021.

soxygen

Wait a second…you gotta slot signing Leury to a 3 year $16.5 million contract in there somewhere. I’d put that in a tie for #1 and then I’d probably keep your order with Kelly and the QO, though those two are close also.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
calcetinesblancos

That Leury move is even more annoying now that it’s preventing us from seeing some young players come up that would at least make this snooze of a season slightly more interesting. For instance, asking Romy Gonzalez to hit better than .205/.232/.262 doesn’t seem like much of a challenge, and even if he doesn’t beat it I wouldn’t really care.

Right Size Wrong Shape

He’s barely hit that in Charlotte this year, when he’s even been able to get on the field.

I didn’t think they’d even bring Leury back given Romy broke out last year as a ready replacement, and especially with Popeye and Yolbert coming up. Even with Romy struggling this year, it was a pretty weird signing since it shouldn’t have required three years, and was redundant with Harrison’s subsequent signing.

metasox

He isn’t really redundant with Harrison unless anyone wanted to see Leury at 2B everyday. And Harrison is a better 3B option while Leury is a better SS option. I’d say Leury is more redundant with Mendick if La Russa was willing to continue putting Mendick in the OF

Last edited 4 months ago by metasox
soxygen

MLbTR analysis of the Sox outfield situation, for those who haven’t seen it:

https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2022/07/white-sox-trade-rumors-outfield-aj-pollock-contract-option.html

upnorthsox

and to the front office’s credit, they struck the absolute jackpot in signing Johnny Cueto to a minor league deal.”

Sorry but I give them zero credit for that, maybe if they had tried to bring back Rodon or not wasted time with VV first I would consider but nope.
I will give them a sliver of credit, at least they didn’t waste 11 weeks like they did last year between Eloy going down and signing Brian Goodwin.

Qubort

I don’t think it’s fair to compare VV to Cueto. At the time VV was signed, the Sox had 5 healthy starters and he knew he was signing be a swing man/6th starter/AAA guy. Cueto wouldn’t have taken that deal. Once Lynn got hurt and there was a competition for 5th starter, they moved very quickly to upgrade and get Cueto in the mix.

a-t

Probably wouldn’t work bc of his player option next year but I wonder if a Pollock + McGuire for Gallo trade would be interesting to the Yanks

soxygen

Over the last 30 games Gallo is hitting .122/.287/.354.

Trooper Galactus

Yeah, but he’s lefty, can play defense still, and doesn’t have a player option.

soxygen

If “Gallo” is the answer then I don’t know what the question is. There is no way his glove in a corner OF spot carries that bat.

Joliet Orange Sox

I agree with Galactus. No one thinks Gallo is great but he could be an upgrade from Pollock right now and save money. Gallo has a season OPS+ of 81 compared to Pollock’s 70. Gallo has an OPS of 0.714 against RHP (slightly above league average) and an OPS of 0.386 against LHP (awful, just awful).

Gallo is also a better fielder than Pollock at this point in his life.

The real reason this trade would make sense for the Sox is that Gallo makes less money this year and they would owe him nothing for next year. Pollock has a player option for next year that is at least $10M (+an extra $1M for each 50 plate appearances in excess of 350). ( mentions this as the reason the trade wouldn’t happen.)

The Sox would be happy to get Gallo for Pollock even if they never played Gallo and they probably could play him against RHP. I expect the Yankees are the team that would say no.

Last edited 4 months ago by Joliet Orange Sox
a-t

JOS has summed up what I was thinking quite well. They’re both disappointing and could use a change of scenery, but Gallo still has a 107 wRC+ vs RHP, and never playing vs RHP is perfectly fine on this squad. He’s historically a plus defender in RF– his negative numbers this year have been from playing LF– so even if he doesn’t improve, he’s better than Pollock.

The problem is that unless the Yanks are convinced they can fix Pollock and make him the 130 wRC+ dude he was in LA, there’s no real reason they would want to take him on– at least, with that player option. Worth exploring, though.

HallofFrank

I’d be thrilled with this but… yeah your 2nd paragraph there is the issue. I’m not sure why they’d want Pollock, who is just an older, more expensive, worse version of Gallo.

HallofFrank

The question is: “who is an affordable upgrade in corner OF that can play a solid defense and hit RHP?”

soxygen

So, as someone who lives on the east coast I do watch or listen to a NYY game once every few days. I just don’t see it. Gallo has struck out 64 times in 164 ABs versus RHP, his range in the field is not at all what it once was. I’ll grant you the power versus RHP and his OF arm, but if his strength is facing RHP then I can just tell you that is not much of a strength as the 38% k rate would indicate. He isn’t rosterable.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
HallofFrank

I’m not sure what you mean by “rosterable,” but he is, without question, both an offensive and defensive upgrade over Pollock and Sheets. So what else are we even talking about?

It’s worth adding that he’s six years younger, so I feel a lot better about a bounce back. And vs RHP, the K Rate is 33%—and that goes with a 15.5% BB rate. That’s higher than any Sox player. Outside of Grandal and Abreu, that’s more than 200% higher than any Sox player.

I’m sure it’s not pretty. But he’s a clear upgrade.

Qubort

If it’s without question, then why would the Yankees be interested in the trade? I can’t imagine getting excited about trading for a guy because he’ll draw 30ish walks over the course of the rest of the season opposed to the ten Sheets will get.

HallofFrank

If you’ll scroll a few posts above, you’ll see I raise this exact point. If you’ll scroll a few posts below, you’ll see my proposed solution.

soxygen

All good points. As I said, I’ve seen a fair bit of him this year and he looks completely lost in a “this might be it forever” kind of way. Maybe not though.

I agree that he might be a slight upgrade in LF and versus RHP. That’s not really my point. My point is simply that if one of the worst hitters in all of Major League Baseball is your upgrade then it isn’t really an upgrade that solves a problem. This isn’t a team that merely needs an upgrade of 0.1 wins or something like that. If you want to get to the playoffs, you trade for someone better than Joey Gallo.

I have been one of the low guys on this site when it comes to AJ Pollock (going back to the acquisition) so that’s not my hang up. I think the proposed trade, which included McGuire, before Grandal has really done much catching this year after two straight years of knee problems, is not likely to make the team better overall. If the Sox are going to go to all the trouble of executing a trade, aspiring for Joey Gallo seems like setting the sights really really low. He could go 0 for a month and someone could say, “yeah, you should have seen that coming.”

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
HallofFrank

A slight upgrade? Pollock and Sheets have combined for -1.1 fWAR this year. Gallo, despite having possibility the worst half of his career, is at .1 fWAR.

But we’re also acting like Gallo and Pollock are just this bad. They’re not. Calling Gallo “one of the worst hitters in all of Major League Baseball” is simply wrong, even adjusting for hyperbole. He’s regularly been an above-average hitter and he’s only 28. If you’re judging players based only on what they’ve done the last three months, they might as well drop Eloy. That’s another Sox OF who’s still been more than .5 fWAR worse than Gallo in less PAs.

soxygen

A bad player with the platoon advantage is still a bad player. That’s all.

In any event, you are entitled to your own opinion. I have said that I have seen a fair bit of Gallo, listen to some of their games on the radio, etc. What I have seen with him this year is like Adam Dunn at his worst, but with a more accurate arm.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
HallofFrank

It’s not really a matter of opinions, though. I’m glad you’ve seen a lot of Gallo and listened to him on the radio. But that doesn’t change what the numbers say. Unless your opinion is that the numbers are wrong or irrelevant, I don’t see what either of our opinions have to do with it. Gallo is an enormous upgrade. No one is saying he’ll be a great OF. But he may be the best the Sox can do.

soxygen

Sounds like you’ve got it all figured out then.

Augusto Barojas

The last thing that is going to help the Sox is an outfielder who has been as bad as a bad Adam Dunn for the past calendar year. The fact that he is a lefty means very little. Pollock probably has a better chance of giving them something than Gallo, Pollock had a .900 OPS against righties a year ago (hard to believe, what a difference a year makes). Of course he has been awful but so has half the Sox lineup. A Yankees fan I know says Gallo is terrible. I believe him. He has almost 3 times as many K’s as hits. Put him in the batter’s box with a runner on 3rd and less than 2 outs, he is less likely to drive in a run than just about anybody in baseball.

To get out of paying Pollock next year would be the only reason it might make sense. It’s not going to move the needle this year to take a cast away from a team that is more than 15 games ahead of the Sox. Doubt the Yankees would want Pollock anyway.

a-t

I think Pollock is very possibly cooked is the thing. He’s chasing pitches worse than any time in his career, and pitchers are just force-feeding him sliders and letting him get himself out; he’s seeing less fastballs and more sliders than any point in his career. He’s also popping it up at crazy rates, and posting the worst BB/K of his career. It seems like a lot of these issues are from the same source— not hacking the damn breaking balls— which is pretty worrying for a 34 year old.

soxygen

Yeah, Pollock does not look as lost as Gallo does. Who knows how they’ll each do in the second half, but if you are going to make a move you have to weigh heavily what you see. Gallo looks awful.

Last edited 4 months ago by soxygen
metasox

Would the Dodgers want Pollock back? They should be best positioned to fix him. Maybe he is just homesick for the NL West. LA had an outfield shortage for a time but are now trying to get something from Jake Lamb and Trayce Thompson. Not sure the Sox would get more than a payroll break

HallofFrank

Riffing off @a-t’s suggestion, how about:

Sox Receive: Joey Gallo
Yanks Receive: Craig Kimbrel, Reese McGuire, James Beard
Dodgers Receive: AJ Pollock, cash considerations from White Sox

Everybody swaps a struggling veteran.