White Sox Interested In Abreu

Remember that Abreu/Contreras/Dye rumor that was bouncing around last night that couldn’t quite graduate from the Unfounded category?  We’re a little closer to a foundation about this one tonight.

A very solid source close to the Phillies tells me that Kenny Williams and the White Sox "love" Bobby Abreu.  It’s the first I’ve heard that the club is truly interested in the right fielder.  He also mentioned that the Phils would like a pitcher like Jose Contreras.  There is some question as to whether the Phils would need to include Gavin Floyd to make an equitable deal.

He said that with the White Sox payroll rising to over $90MM, they can’t take on much more.  However, I’ve heard in the past from my White Sox guy that the Sox would actually take the payroll to $105MM.  What’s more, the 2006 salaries of Dye, Contreras, and Abreu are a wash.  The Phils would take on $13MM and the White Sox would do the same.

The Sox would have to squeeze a marginal $11MM into their payroll in 2007.  Abreu is owed $17MM for that season (including a $2MM buyout of his ’08 option).  But given that the club likely would have exercised Jermaine Dye‘s affordable $6MM option, it’s a marginal $11 mil for ’07.

This would clearly be a win now move for the Phils, as it would strengthen their team for 2006.  The combination of Contreras and Dye was worth 10.5 wins above replacement players in 2005.  Abreu was worth 6.8 wins.  While he still has potential at age 23, Gavin Floyd can’t be counted on for much after posting a 6.16 ERA and 1.61 WHIP in 137 Triple A innings in 2005.

Another interesting nugget is the close friendship between Abreu and Ozzie Guillen.  Guillen certainly had some influence on the acquisition and retention of Freddy Garcia.

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