Season's meetings, Day 1: Bonjour, Pierre

The first day of the winter meetings in Indianapolis brought back a familiar name that might send chills down your spine.
Juan. Pierre.
This being the first winter meetings covered primarly by Twitter, rounding up the rumors isn’t the easiest thing. But here’s the chain of events:

The thing with Pierre in past seasons is that the desire to see the parties united seemed to come from the media. Pierre, being fast and powerless, seemed to fit Ozzie Guillen’s definition of a leadoff hitter, and Guillen knew him from his days as a coach on the Florida Marlins’ staff.
He barely made sense when he was a free agent; with two years and $18 million left on his current deal, it’s absurd.  Considering the Sox don’t want to go more than one year with Scott Podsednik, who might cost $3 million per year, there’s no reason to make this deal. They’re not exactly the same player, but they’re close:

Podsednik 537 25 6 7 30 13 39 74 .304 .353 .412
Pierre 425 16 8 0 30 12 27 27 .308 .365 .392

Podsednik has more power, Pierre has been healthier. Podsednik has a stronger arm, Pierre isn’t scared by walls. Despite belonging to different races, they’re amazingly comparable, so I’m not seeing this happening.
If there’s anything to this rumor, it seems along the lines of the Coco Crisp talk — another way to tell Podsednik there are other fish in the sea.
Chatter box:
*Guillen has Alex Rios playing center — even if Andruw Jones proves something — and Carlos Quentin with his pick of corners right now. Greg Walker loves the way Quentin looks right now, and Kenny Williams is encouraged by Rios’ strong finish.
*Williams is also encouraged by Tyler Flowers, saying that he could be in the mix for the backup catcher spot because “Tyler Flowers is going to hit.”
*Williams had no comment on Roy Halladay and Hideki Matsui. Guillen likes Matsui’s bat, but questions his knees or glove as the Sox continue to stress DH flexbility.
*The White Sox have shown interest in J.J. Putz.
*Mark Gonzalez lists the White Sox’s no-trade clauses but forgets Scott Linebrink.
*My local team, the Tri-City ValleyCats, is the short-season organization of the year according to Baseball America.
*I’ve posted another Christmas Card on Facebook.

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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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For obvious name-related reasons, I’m all for the Sox signing Putz.


I like the Putz too. I’m too busy… or lazy… to go look at stats, but would/could his signing signify more chance Jenks goes away (and we get something we can use in return)?


I’d rather watch Jordan Danks than Pierre or Pods. I wouldn’t want him to leadoff though. KW will trade for a major league ready, low profile, prospect.
I’d also be down for Putz. Between him, Linebrink and Pena one of them is bound to have a good year.


i would like to think that ozzie and kenny are smart enough to know that for all of the roster flexibity they have with addition of these supersubs that the offense on the whole has glaring holes. if kenny is trying to get matsui under the radar, that would be great, but is he affordable?


agreed striker… id much rather watch danks try to figure it out than to sign pierre… id still love to have pods around though. If he can be had for a reasonable amount, he seems worth a risk.
Jim, is that Christmas card from ed farmer real?


I dont feel I need to say this, but I wouldnt want Pierre for free, let alone 18 mil or any number they come up with. And I am actually surprised how close pods and his numbers are which makes that contract that much more absurd.
JJ Putz is the perfect, “maybe this is his lucky year” type reliever who could certainly be a very high return on low investment type guy. I am all for adding as many of these guys as possible.


Why exactly do people like Putz? For three years in a row his innings have gone down and his walks and contact percentage have gone way up.
He could certainly rebound, but there are a number of better relievers who don’t have multiple arm problems and a half-dozen teams interested in them.


1. He is cheap
2. He had one of the most dominant years I have seen a closer have not that long ago.
3. Everyone wants bullpen arms with upside, no matter injuries or past performances.


1. Lots of other guys will be cheaper.
2. Two dominant seasons from a reliever just doesn’t mean that much. Outside of the Riveras and Nathans of the world, lots of relievers are great for a season or two and never replicate that. I don’t see anything in Putz’s peripherals or makeup to suggest that two great Safeco-aided years are replicatable.
3. Injuries and past performance is exactly what’s limiting the upside. He’s going to be 33, so even if he is healthy, time is against him coming anywhere close to his 2006-2007 run.


I don’t hate signing him, I just think a lot of teams are going to be all “ooh closer experience drool” while better pitchers with fewer injuries go for half or less of the price.


Teahan 3 years 14 mil, I just hate that allocation of resources and I never like paying for a guy you control already. They bought out one free agent year but what are the chances they were gonna lose him to some lucrative free agent contract offer at that point…


I’ll take Scotty Pods over Pierre any day. Why doesn’t Kenny just give him the $3Mil x 2 yrs, he wasted about $40 Mil on Rios!!!!
Don’t understand why we would go after JJ Putz either. He’s older than Jenks and broke down last year, didn’t he??? Once a reliever starts to break down it’s the beginning of the end (see Bob James, Billy Koch).


Judging the Rios move already… come on