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White Sox Interested In Blalock?

In today's Chicago Tribune, Phil Rogers lays out some options for the White Sox to further bolster their club.  According to Rogers:

"The most transparent scenarios are a starter and Joe Crede to Texas for a package fronted by left-handed-hitting third baseman Hank Blalock (signed for a highly reasonable $13.7 million for the next three years with a $6.2 million option in 2009); a starter and Juan Uribe to Baltimore for Miguel Tejada—not that likely—or a starter to Baltimore for a package of young talent in a deal that makes Tejada happier about staying put.

When Williams trades one of his starters, then judge how the return stacks up against Young, not the starter traded.

Young for Blalock?

Williams' cell phone ought to be shipped to Cooperstown if he can pull that one off."

While Garland has more of a future ahead of him, Contreras may be easier to trade.  The Cuban is 34 years old, a number in which I don't have full confidence.  His contract demands won't be as prohibitive as Garland's.  Garland is a more verified 26 years of age, so he'll want a deal twice as long as Contreras's.  Garland is a year younger than Barry Zito, and may be a comparable pitcher despite Zito's track record and reputation.  If a 28 year-old injury prone A.J. Burnett is worth five years and $55MM, doesn't that make Zito and Garland worth even more?

I imagine Zito and Garland could each land six-year deals through free agency.  Their agents will probably start the negotiations at seven years.  Garland could get 6/66 and Zito 6/72.  Any team trading for one of these starters will probably want some sort of contract agreement in place before doing so.  After all, the purpose of acquiring Garland or Zito is mainly to gain an exclusive chance to negotiate before the pitcher hits free agency.

Phil Rogers's Texas Rangers scenario is a good one, given that GM Jon Daniels at least entertained offering Burnett a huge contract.  The Rangers sorely lack starting pitching depth, and Hank Blalock is very expendable.  Would Jon Garland and his sinker be a good fit pitching the next six years in Texas?  Not really.  Despite a big reduction in his overall home run rate this year, he was still right at league average in that department.  His rate was higher at home, of course, and it would remain high at Ameriquest.

The average groundball to flyball ratio in the American League was 1.59 in 2005.  Garland's 1.82 mark isn't anything special despite his sinker.  Garland's main asset is that he's durable, making at least 32 starts in each of the last four seasons.  He's never had the pressure of being anything close to the ace of a staff, and he's had exactly one above average season.  For Daniels to swap his best trading chip in Blalock for essentially six expensive years of Garland is certainly a risky proposition. 

I can't agree with Phil Rogers when he says Kenny Williams's cell phone should go to Cooperstown for a Garland-Blalock trade.  While Blalock is young and powerful, he's obviously been greatly aided by playing in Ameriquest.  He'd have that same crutch in U.S. Cellular, but is that an improvement over Joe CredeCrede was worth one more win than Blalock in 2005, something I hope Kenny Williams is aware of.

A better swap for the Sox might be Jose Contreras for Phillies left fielder Pat Burrell.  Burrell is 29 and probably has a few good seasons left in him.  He knows how to draw walks, and could hit 40 HR with U.S. Cellular as a home park.  Scott Podsednik would look a lot better coming off the bench than starting at a power position.  Burrell has $36.5MM left on his contract over the next three years, so the Phils might have to send over $10MM to make the deal work.  A swap involving Garland and Carl Crawford could also make sense, if the D-Rays think they can compete in 2007.


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Contreras for Burrell? I dont think thats enough for Burrell. Im a Phillies fan, so I guess im biased, but I dont know that Contreras makes us a whole lot better, and for how long. Burrell is the only legit RH bat in our lineup right now, in terms of power, and unless we are getting a Manny Ramirez or Miguel Tejada, I dont know that will change by opening day.

I dont think Garland is worth anywhere near the money hes going to get in free agency, which I guess means Contreras is better priced better at 9 million this year, then free agency, then giving an unproven commodity (Garland) 5/55 next year. I still dont like the deal for Philly unless theres more involved in the package.

I think this opens the door to the McCarthy& Brian Anderson and/or Josh Fields for Carl Crawfod trade. Anderson is a legit. big league starting OF prospect and McCarthy could jump Kasmir as the best arm in their rotation while Chicago would just get better and better

McCarthy and Anderson for Crawford? Not a chance. You're talking a high ceiling SP prospect (potentially a top of the rotation guy) and a starting CF for an above average starting CF. I think it's too much.

McCarthy and Fields/Anderson for Baez and Crawford would make a lot more sense for the White Sox. Because everyone keeps talking about trading a starter from the sox, if that is done the team still lacks TWO bullpen arms aside from one right now.

Crawford for Anderson/McCarthy? Williams is a risk taker, but not that big a risk. Anderson is their future, and McCarthy is a solid #4 at worst, projecting ahead. Crawford is a nice player, but he isnt an exceptional talent, not a guy you give away two of your best young players for.

Check Crawford's numbers, he's 23 and he's improved every year. He's far and away one of the top OFers in baseball. He hits around .300, still needs to take more walks but he's a young stud already. There are arms in Charlotte, and there will be some minor league invites taken to full out the pen as well.

Contreras for Burrell? Thanks for nothing. Just floating such an idea shows contempt for the Phillies and their fans.

Crawford is actually 24. Hes an above average outfielder, but what does he do exceptionally well? He stole 46 bases last year, which is good, and he hit 15 HR, which is nice. However, how does that make him one of the best? Does it make him more valuable than Anderson might be? Anderson's avg/obp/slugging is right in line with Crawford's, he just doesnt have the stolen base potential. What you are saying though, is that McCarthy is worth those extra 40 stolen bases a year?

Anderson's line at AAA last year:

448 AB, .295/.360/.469, 16 HR, 57 RBI

Crawford's line last year

644 AB, .301/.331/.469, 15 HR, 81 RBI

I dont see how Crawford is a big upgrade, outside of the stolen bases. His stolen bases dont make him worth McCarthy, IMO.

As a Cubs' fan, it's truly frustrating to see the creativity of the White Sox front office. I wish the Sox well--Kenny Williams has certainly made things fun and isn't afraid to wheel'n deal--and I wish a change of management for the Cubbies.

One other thing, when Williams realized that it's "win now" he wasn't afraid to deal a prospect like Chris Young, who frankly profiles a lot better than "untouchable" Felix Pie. You can certainly debate that Williams gave up too much for Vasquez, but he's not afraid to address a problem.

Scott Podsednik on the bench???? Riiiiiiiiight

Scott Podsednik on the bench???? Riiiiiiiiight. A team full of homerun hitters wins nothing. See 2004 Chicago Cubs.

What? I don't hate the Phillies. I think that's a very even deal, considering the inconsistency of both players and the Phils' need for a decent starter.

I wish there was an alternate world where the Sox put a good hitter in place of Pods in '05. The team would've been even better.

Phil Rogers is an idiot.

Contreras for Burrell is a very even deal? You're out of your mind.

A team full of power hitters brings too much inconsistency. Sure you'll have some nice stat padding games where they put double digit runs on the board, but you are proned to hit unreasonable long cold streaks and when you face a good pitcher??...forget about it.

A healthy balance is the road to victory. Pat Burrell isn't half the player Podsednik is.

"A healthy balance is the road to victory. Pat Burrell isn't half the player Podsednik is."--

Without a doubt one of the dumbest things I've ever heard. Podsednik had about .00000000001% to do with the Sox winning the world series. He's a nice story and all, but, as a Sox fan, the prospect of having a Thome/Konerko/Burrell/Dye/AJP middle of the lineup is great. It's not that all power oriented lineups are inconsistent, it's that every power lineup the Sox have ever had has included some of the most inconsistent guys in MLB: Valentin, CLEE, etc.

WORD. Finally some sense around here. Burrell is a high OBP power threat who would obviously be an improvement over the beloved Pods.

Burrell AND $10 million for Contreras? You actually believe that this is a "very even deal"? Please tell me that you were drunk when you wrote that because no self respecting baseball fan can truly believe that.

Do you have...a coherent argument involving numbers?

Burrell was worth 5.8 wins in 2005, and it's hard to figure he'll improve upon it. Contreras was worth 5.9 wins in 2005, and he may be better in '06 based on his second half.

Burrell is owed a hefty 36.5MM over the next three seasons. Contreras is on the hook for below-market $8MM salary in 2006 and doesn't have any further commitment.

But hey, if you can prove why me calling this an even deal makes me a drunk idiot, please, go ahead.

Michael z is right. The Phils dont get any respect, even w/ the addition of Gillick, teams still think the GM in philly is just afigure head for owners, who love telling the ladies they own a baseball team. We're even reminded of one of the worst heists in history with the tradeing of Padilla(the last player gone from the, gulp, Schilling deal). Teams still think Wade is running this team.
With that fresh in his mind, RumorMonger, proposes one of his best fan trades I've heard in a while. Burrell straight up for the highly overrated and underaged Contreras plus 10 mill to boot. Thank god, Gillick has enough sense. Seriously though, you must be a Whitesox fan. I'll give you the fact Burrell can be alittle inconsistent(probably due to injury, though), but for some weird reason that I can't even begin to fathom I think Burrell is going to be a hell of alot more productive than Contreras next year. As far as the Vazquez deal Im assuming D-backs did that deal for the prospects b/c O Hernandez is also highly overrated and isnt he like 40 or something.
Again, -Philly fans- you dont have to worry about this deal ever being considered b/c Gillick was born w/ a brain.
All hail Pat Gillick.

couple things:

1) Julius was right, Phil Rogers is an idiot. Even working for the Tribune Co. he has no insights beyound the average el rider.

2) What did Ken Williams drink? Where did the guy who'se only two moves were a) trade for roberto alomer and b) trade for carl everett?

3) Anyone who thinks Pods is the reason the Sox won the WS needs to look up two numbers: # of White Sox runs scored in 2005 and # of White Sox runs scored in 2004.

I would never call you a drunk idiot (that particular epithet would be reserved for the person who claims that Burrell is half the player Podnesdink is), but I would call this trade a disaster from the Phillies' point of view. Burrell is a 29-year-old power hitter who is coming into his peak years. While it's true that he had a couple of bad years in '03 and '04 this was due to "mental" difficulties to which, as his '05 season will attest, he has made the required adjustments. In my admittedly untrained opinion (I must admit i don't know how to calculate how a player is worth 5.8 or 5.9 wins, etc), Burrell is an exciting young player, good for 30-35 home runs and 110-120 RBI, and possibly more, for at least the next five or six years. Contreras admits to being 34--I'm sure glad I didn't look like that at 34, and I'm not an athlete. He looks about 45 in my estimation. He's had exactly one decent year (2005), and he has nowhere to go but down from that. The Phillies have enough third starters, they don't need another one, thanks. I'd take Garland for Burrell, but the Sox would have to throw in Brandon Mccarthy AND that $10MM you were talking about.

RE: Contreras for Burrell.
1. As a phillies fan, I find this deal awful as well.

2. Age, salary and ability aside, this deal just doesn't make sense for the phils. Burrell bats righty, the rest of their power threats are lefthanded (Abreu, Utley and Howard). Utley and Howard have struggled against lefties. They really need a power-hitting RH in there to break up the lineup; that's one of the big reasons you've heard abreu's name but not burrell's in trade talks.

Back to the drawing board, RumorMonger. thanks for keeping me entertained, though.

Here's one: Kurkjian says Garland is likely to be dealt and the White Sox want a third baseman.

Astros/Red Sox/White Sox-

Astros- Give up Qualls and or Everett. Get Garland.

Red Sox- Give up Marte or Youkilis. Get Astros package.

White Sox- Give up Garland. Get Red Sox 3b.

Sounds good to me as an Astros fan and fills needs for everybody. Although, Houston loses a cheap potential closer and solid defender.

Phil Rogers is an absolute joke. Anyone can spit out foolish scenarios just for the fun of it. Here's one....how about Joe Crede and Mark Buerhle for King Kong and Aquaman. I literally called him on it recently went he said something that was wrecklessly wrong. I'm still waiting for his response.

That actually sounds pretty reasonable, ShutDown.

phil rogers pulls all this stuff out of his @ss...he is full of it...never take anything he has to say seriuosly unless you hear it from a good source...as a sox fan, i dont want burrell...he had a great year last year but is notorious for inconsistency throughout the season...as is contreres, but you cant start trading away pitchers that meant so much to us last year...i understand that garland probably will get the boot, but thats fine, he is going to get alot of money next year, much more than what he is worth. trade garland and not contreres. also dont trade for blalock when you have crede. crawford i would think would be untouchable from the DRays. the only trade taht makes sense to me is garland and maybe a minor leaguer, ryan sweeney, for abreu.

Actually, if you look at Crawford's numbers, they are mediocre. He has marginal power, and his walk rate is downright pathetic. He's still a player in making. Anderson and McCarthy for Crawford is nothing short of insane.
The Sox want and need to trade Garland, not McCarthy. The whole point of the Vasquez deal was to have a pitcher signed for an extra year so 2 don't expire after 2006. McCarthy provides a cheap starter for 5 seasons, also part of the plan. The Sox aren't trading him, especially for a result of the hype machine like Crawford.

The Sox interest in Blalock has nothing to do with whether he's better or not than Crede - the pythagorean "1 more win" is irrelevant (and that nonsense said that the team that dominated 2/3 of the reg season and the entire post season shouldn't have made the playoffs and was 6 games worse than Cleveland). The point of the trade would be to get another player and his contract out of the way for a few years. Thinking ahead, actually; which is what the Vasquez deal was, although it's tough to realize it ocnsidering they gave up such a prized prospect.

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