Offseason plan No. 15; Barons plan to relocate

Can the creator of today's offseason plan find his 2009-10 magic? And how soon will the Barons move to downtown Birmingham?

The penultimate offseason plan comes with lofty expectations, for the creator was the only amateur GM to come up with a move that actually materialized in real life.
You know him from such hits as “Sign J.J. Putz to an incentive-laden deal” and … well, that’s about it. Ladies and gentlement, presenting…

Matt H.’ 2011 offseason plan

1) Would you offer arbitration to:

  • A.J. Pierzynski? (Type A)
  • Paul Konerko? (Type A)
  • Manny Ramirez? (Type A)
  • J.J. Putz (Type B)

2) Would you pick up Ramon Castro’s $1.2 million option for 2011, or buy him out for $200,000?
Smart move to do this.
CLUB CONTROL (explain if warranted)
3) One-year contract for John Danks?  If not, what would you pay to extend him?
The whole Jon Lester-based deal didn’t pan out last year so going year to year is fine.
4) Would you tender a contract to Bobby Jenks?
I’d be open to bringing him back at a discount but that’s not usually how these things play out. For all the knocks he received last year he wasn’t THAT bad, just not worth his arbitration number this year.
5) Would you tender a contract to Carlos Quentin?
One more try at this guy at a reasonable arbitration number is fine by me. Just don’t put all your eggs in his basket because the basket can and will break at times.
6) Would you tender a contract to Tony Pena?
Pena can’t be worth the money despite showing some signs of life as as a starter late in the season. Makes that whole Brandon Allen deal look turrible now.
7) Which of the following impending White Sox free agents would you attempt to re-sign, and at what price:
*Paul Konerko: See if he accepts arbitration first but go three years with a vesting option for a fourth for three years and $36 million. His presence is still valuable to this team in addition to his production.
*A.J. Pierzynski: If A.J. doesn’t accept arbitration, I have a hard time believing he’ll find suitors on the open market because he’s a Type-A free agent. I wouldn’t go any more than one year.
*J.J. Putz: Two years at $8 or 9 million seems fair.
*Manny Ramirez: Not sure why you’d bring back Manny unless he starts taking “stuff” again. His OBP is an asset, but he won’t be worth the money/potential mid-season headaches because his power seems zapped.
*Omar Vizquel: ONE MORE YEAR, SAME PRICE! Can’t expect him to duplicate offensive production but he’ll provide a decent safety net defensively.
*Andruw Jones: No. We don’t need any more hackers here.
*Freddy Garcia: Another incentive-laden deal is fine by me, but why anything more than that? He’s a junkballer at this point.
*Mark Kotsay: No … too “unlucky.”

8) Name three (or more) free agents you’d consider, and at what price.
*Adam Dunn — I’d offer him something in the range of three years and $35 million to be our DH, but Kenny doesn’t usually splurge on free agents. While I’d love this, I still think it’s rather unrealistic.
*Scott Downs/Jason Frasor – Either one would be an asset as long as they don’t get offered arbitration. I’d go with the Putz deal as reference.
9) Name a couple (or more) realistic trades that could improve the Sox.
A wild card Kenny Williams move would be Chone Figgins. He had a down year and appeared uninterested on a bad Seattle team. He would be an asset as a No. 2 hitter in the lineup that provides great defense at the hot corner and a decent OBP. Sending Scott Linebrink/Mark Teahen over to the Mariners for payroll reasons is a good start. Sending Brent Morel, Eduardo Escobar and Tyler Flowers would be typical K-Will as well.
And finally:
10) Sum it all up in a paragraph or nine, and give a ballpark estimate of the total payroll.
If everything works out the way I want it to my club would look like this:
LF – Juan Pierre
3B – Chone Figgins
1B – Paul Konerko
CF – Alex Rios
SS – Alexei Ramirez
2B – Gordon Beckham
RF – Carlos Quentin
C – A.J Pierzynski
DH – Dayan Viciedo
Omar Vizquel, Ramon Castro, Brent Lillibridge, and Alejandro De Aza make up your bench.
SP – John Danks, Gavin Floyd, Mark Buehrle, Edwin Jackson, Jake Peavy
RP – Jason Frasor, Sergio Santos, Matt Thornton, J.J. Putz, Scott Downs, Freddy Garcia, Jhonny Nunez – CLOSER BY COMMITTEE
I think Figgins would give us an ideal no. 2 hitter and allow Ramirez to drop down in the order to pad his RBI numbers. You need to hope that TCQ can piece together a full season because the right fielder market is pretty bare (realistically speaking). While I like the idea of Chris Sale as a potential closer, it’s wasteful to give him a ceiling at this point, so he’ll start the season starting in Triple-A, giving the White Sox an opportunity to trade a starter (Danks/Floyd/Jackson) for a right fielder during the season.
Arizona Fall League:

  • AFL West 3, AFL East 2
    • Jared Mitchell struck out in his only plate appearance.
    • Eduardo Escobar grounded out in his.
    • Anthony Carter faced three batters, retiring two and giving up a hit.

This game was televised on MLB Network, so I got to watch the three aforementioned player. Mitchell struck out on a tough curve, and it’s hard to believe that Escobar leads the AFL in homers. He chokes up on the bat about two inches, and he’s incredibly … slight. Carter was just pumping fastballs.
Also, Larry recaps the month in White Sox minor league baseball, and one link he didn’t include — the Birmingham Barons’ plan to move to a downtown ballpark.
They signed a letter of intent to relocate from Hoover, which didn’t please the Hoover mayor. Thus, when the Barons notified Hoover that they would exercise an option to extend the lease five years, the mayor said he would hold them to it, and not allow an early exit. It’s worth keeping an eye on.

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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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I imagine you wouldn’t want to offer arb to Pierzynski if you only want him for 1 yr and don’t think he will draw much interest.


>>RF – Carlos Quentin<<
Didn't we see enough of this? The plan should be one of two choices….
1) CQ as full-time DH
2) CQ not a member of the White Sox.
These are really the only two reasonable options.


I thought about Figgins too when I did mine, it’s a very Kenny thing to do. I like Chone as a buy low guy if they eat salary, but, I think the Sox seem pretty committed to Morel and not spending money at the hot corner. I don’t fault you for the move though.
I think the middle of that order is really lacking a left-handed bat that we are surely to get. It may not be Dunn, but it will be somebody. No way CQ is back in the field next year either, he’s gotta be the DH. Dayan is also not a full-time player at this point IMO his BABIP is unsustainable and his walk rate is atrocious, all terrible signs for 2011.
Frasor is interesting. I think the money needs to be spent on offense though myself. Sale dominated last year in the pen, let him stay there until we need him elsewhere. There is no precedent to say this wouldn’t work either. Plenty of guys have earned work in a bullpen instead of AAA and were able to move to the rotation at a later time.