The Indians felt they had a shot at signing Lorenzo Cain to a three-year deal, Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes, though they still would have needed to trade another notable contract off the roster to accommodate a Cain signing. Management felt a pursuit of Cain was a risk worth taking, as the Tribe is very familiar with the center fielder’s abilities from his years as a division rival. Cleveland was able to land Edwin Encarnacion on a smaller-than-expected three-year deal last winter due to a slow market, though while Cain’s market also took a while to develop, he still had multiple four-year offers on the table (and eventually landed five years from the Brewers). It isn’t clear if the Tribe is still looking to make a notable outfield addition if they can clear payroll, or if the team was only willing to make such a big splash for Cain specifically.
Some more from around the AL Central…
- With Alcides Escobar on the verge of re-signing with the Royals, GM Dayton Moore still sees Raul Mondesi Jr. as a notable piece of the team’s future, Moore told reporters (including Maria Torres and Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star). Mondesi had been expected to take on a larger role as the everyday shortstop this season, though the additions of Escobar and Ryan Goins as shortstop depth could see Mondesi spend time at other positions. “[Mondesi] can play second base, he can play short, he’s good enough to play center field. We’ll see how that emerges,” Moore said. “We don’t have a clear vision of that right now, other than to simply say that he is a talent that we expect to develop.” It still seems as though K.C. plans to see quite a lot of Mondesi this season, as Moore said that Mondesi’s development is best helped by appearing in “five of six, five of seven” games per week.
- On the flip side, Fangraphs’ Eric Longenhagen wonders if the Royals may have moved on from Mondesi and are now looking at prospect Nicky Lopez as their shortstop of the future. Some scouts and executives from around the league are troubled by Mondesi’s bat control and lack of plate discipline, as well as concerns about his off-the-field preparation and focus issues. Longenhagen feels that teams with an interest in Mondesi’s potential should be calling the Royals in case Kansas City would be open to trading the shortstop.
- The White Sox will be ready and willing to spend when they move from rebuilders to contenders, GM Rick Hahn told CBS Chicago’s Bruce Levine and other reporters. “Ultimately, competing for free agents and targeting big-ticket items and hopefully converting on them will be the next logical step when the time is right,” Hahn said. “Anyone who doubts that we will break from past perception or past process, I believe the evidence is there over the last year that those old standards are gone.” Chicago has explored making some high-profile (and pricey) trades for the likes of Manny Machado and Christian Yelich this winter, and in my opinion, it wouldn’t be a total surprise to see the Sox make a play for one of the big-name free agents still on the market. Speaking of Yelich, Hahn said (via Levine’s Twitter) that the White Sox “we were not comfortable going above what we offered” the Marlins in negotiations.
- Alex Wilson will stretch out as a starter in the Tigers’ spring camp, the right-hander tells Chris McCosky of the Detroit News. Just one of Wilson’s 231 MLB appearances has come as a starting pitcher, and even that was a three-inning emergency outing in 2015. Still, Wilson has been a durable multi-inning reliever and feels a transition is possible. As McCosky notes, it’s essentially “a no-risk experiment” for the Tigers since Wilson can always return to his previous bullpen role if the rotation move doesn’t pan out. Wilson posted a 2.47 ERA over 171 1/3 IP from 2014-16, though an inflated homer rate boosted his ERA to 4.50 over 60 frames last season. The righty also said that he is fully recovered from a broken right leg suffered last September.
The White Sox shouldn’t even consider trading prospects until they’ve developed and established core players on the big league roster. Abandoning the rebuild too soon merely puts them back where they started a year ago.
They need at least 2 years of playing together. It’s probably not ever gonna happen but maybe attempt to throw the bank at kershaw next year. Doubt he leaves la though.
Trading Sale, Quintana, and Eaton when they were all young and signed to cheap contracts was another way to go back to square one. It seems to be what they are good at.
Doing that got them tons of prospects. How else does that happen? You don’t trade James shields for Eloy Jimenez
Unfortunately for the Chisox, you do trade Fernando Tatis Jr. for James Shields.
San Diego payed though.
Trading older talent near the end of their contracts seems to be the smarter way. Sure, if the Yankees were to sign Judge and Severino to team friendly, long term contracts, and then put them on the market, they would get a ton of prospects offered. What would be the point? Their fans would not be touting the GM as being a genius for doing so. The problem in Chicago is that the same group of suspects that traded their young core are still in charge. Cant wait to see what prospects they receive when they trade Moncada. Enjoy the perpetual rebuild.
You think teams aren’t interested in valued contracts? We had to start somewhere.
They traded for offense, they have tons of money left for free agent pitching. Not to mention they have some good pitching prospects also.
paid not payed. Unless you meant to refer to the tar used to seal a boat.
I was debating the word usage.
San Diego did not pay anything more for Tatis then Shields. Sure they paid down some of the dumb salary the Padres over paid on so you are saying that ok? So the Sox “sold” Tatis for some money and an aging useless starter?
@ King Joffrey
Not true as Hahn was not originally in charge and then had Williams interfering. Hahn is a good GM and his call to rebuild and selling it to ownership was the right move and he did well on his deals to date
King Joffrey: Difference being that Eloy Jimenez and Dylan Cease were both top-100 prospects in addition to being the Cubs top-2 talents when the Jose Quintana trade was made last summer. Fernando Tatis Jr, was nowhere to be seen in anyone’s top-100 list or among the White Sox top prospects at the time of the James Shields trade.
Rick Hahn is the 1st GM in all of sports for Chicago franchises that I believe in 100 percent. Everything he has done since taking over has been incredible. Although he scared me a Little bit when what I heard they might give up for machado. But that was just rumors. Go wsox
The titles have changed but the suspects remain.
At the time Tatis Jr. wasn’t even a top 100 prospect. He bloomed a bit later. I’m sure if he was ranked as high as he is now, the Sox wouldn’t have used him as trade bait.
Why is this so hard for casual baseball fans to understand? The White Sox had and still have some good players, but were essentially a .500 team that lacked the resources to improve. They could not or would not spend money on the elite FAs they needed to contend, and their farm system was among the worst in baseball. .500 teams with no money and poor draft positions who truly want to contend have no choice but to double down and sell trade worthy assets to rebuild the roster at some point. It’s foolish to waste money on “plan b” and “plan c” FAs who aren’t talented enough to impact the win column year after year. So enough about Sale and the other players they traded. They’re only a year into the rebuild, and the Sox already have the best farm system in the game. This team will be vastly superior to what it was two years ago very soon, and Sox fans should be excited that Hahn has finally broken the status quo for the franchise. The last time the Sox rebuilt their roster ended up getting them a Championship in 2005-2006. Be patient and give it Time.
Sale and Eaton were traded because of insubordination. Sox forced themselves into this rebuild. They should have just suspended them and gone about trying to win.
Braves & Yankees would like a word with “best farm in the game”. Chicago has elite level prospects like Moncada, Jimenez and Kopesch, but lacks depth throughout the system to think that they might contend by 2020. Trust the process though, another high draft pick and you might get to be the #1 system (which also doesn’t mean anything).
I am not a casual fan. That the front office did not move the expensive players so they could free up payroll for support for their core, was their choice. They made the decisions on who they put around them. To not consider Sale, Quintana and Eaton part of the last rebuild is just convenient. I don’t remember it getting them a WS, so I guess it doesn’t count? Let me know if any of those prospect they received put up the numbers that the players they traded away were putting up. Let me know if any sign that team friendly extension. Keep in mind that its the same front office that failed to build a winner last round.
They should have axed Ventura before things got that bad in the clubhouse.
tycobb016: With that sort of logical thinking would you concede that the great humanitarian from which you derive your nickname ought not be in the HOF.
You will need to keep reposting that to the casual fans. Not sure why they can never grasp the simple concept and reasons you clearly set forth. It is amazing.
Great explanation. Call the post Rebuilding for Dummies and charge the casual fans for the education!!
What a silly and absurd position to think the Sox trades had to do with insubordination. Sorry to inform you that was not even a consideration in the thought out rebuild they undertook.
Sure they forced themselves into it. Haha
ChiSoxCity: Most of what you say is spot on although the White Sox were involved in the competition for a couple of elite free agents like SP Masahiro Tanaka and LF Yoenis Cespedes. They just didn’t go the extra mile when it came to bidding for Tanaka while Cespedes reportedly preferred returning to the Mets as a FA.
It remains to be seen if the White Sox will go that “extra mile” for the likes of Manny Machado or Bryce Harper next offseason or whether the two even have serious interest in heading to the South Side of Chicago.
tycoon, that is not why Sale and Eaton were traded. Completely unrelated events.
I am a White Sox fan too for 61 years. Sale walked into spring training and announced that he hasn’t pitched a meaningful game in his life and it went south from there. Eaton got himself involved in the Adam Laroche and son fiasco. Sale and Eaton both said too much to the media. that Jerry Kenny could handle. You should know this. The rebuild never should have happened.
Aaron Sapoznik: How great a humanitarian are you? Ty Cobb is Top 5 All Time. Of course he belongs in the HOF. Please stop with the crybaby sensitivity and being offended over stupid stuff. Stick to baseball. Nothing personal meant toward you, I enjoy your posts, just annoyed with the poor cry girl stuff.
Jeez, are you actually saying they didn’t get anything in return? These were all blockbuster deals, and many experts considered big-time overpays. It’s called gettin’ it done, son.
Per MLB Pipeline, Bleacher Report, and other publications it’s the Braves, White Sox, and Yankees. The overall depth isn’t as bad as you think. Moreover, the Braves lost 10 players in there minor league fiasco, and only resigned a few of them. The systems are closer than you think.
I read the Sun Times article this morning. That they even considered making a play for Machado with Burger in the wings means Manny would get his SS wishes and who’s on a reasonable contract with a lot of teams looking at him this year? Tim Anderson.
The Central really only has on strong team; that’s the Indians. The Twins are decent, but nothing overwhelming. It’s not inconceivable that the White Sox break out to the 85win territory, just like what the Twins did in 2017.
The White Sox need not trade their players, but if they really wanted to pull a move out of left field, they could sign JD Martinez.
We would then look bad, and everyone would hate us.
I wouldn’t see it as a terrible move for the White Sox. They’d immediately have two big power guys, that could take off some pressure from their younger prospects coming up..
If you can fill up the higher pressure spots in the batting order with quality veterans, then you can shuffle the rest of your up and coming prospects around those veterans. That way, the emerging prospects aren’t asked to carry the load for the team.
Just in general, not necessarily talking about the White Sox, but, in my opinion, if you have 3 premiere prospects coming up, they would be put in a much better position to succeed if they have protection from other veterans in the line-up..
I would put a veteran in the #1 spot, then take the best hitting prospect in the 2-hole, surrounded by then a JD Martinez in the 3, and an Abreu in the 4, then maybe another prospect with power in the 5-hole, another veteran batting 6th, and so-on…
Like I said, this allows your prospects to feel comfortable, and then they won’t have to carry so much weight, and end up trying to do too much, which can lead to pro-longed slumps…
Strategically, I agree with everything you’re saying, just not the JD part. JD is valuable to a contender now. He’s 32. When we’re ready he’s 35. The contract doesn’t add up IMO. Fans here like Delmonico.
Terrible idea… The White Sox don’t need to spend $100MM+ on a slugger with minimal defensive ability. They need to find as many 5-tool position players and elite pitching prospects as they can and give them time to develop. They’ll get a better ROI, and still have money to add high caliber FAs when they’re good enough to contend. See Houston, D.C., Cubs, STL historically, etc. This isn’t rocket science; the blueprint for “limited market” teams to win and be competitive for multiple years has been long established. Teams just have to commit to it to make it work.
Really. What does their pitching staff look like?
Acquiring Yelich would not abandon the rebuild it would have accelerated it. Yelich is 26 and has 5 years of control. He was the perfect target and have CF wide open
Pending of course what the Marlins demanded back from the White Sox in return for Christian Yelich. It’s not like the organization doesn’t already possess at least two elite outfield prospects in Eloy Jimenez and Luis Robert, the latter of whom is projected to be their future CF and likely leadoff hitter.
ChiSox 2020 Champs put it in the bank. Lets Go Sox, real Chicagoans here me. Flubs were the toilet paper stuck to your shoe for over a century, joke of a franchise. Location, Location, Location if SoxPark was where Wrigley is flubs woulda been moved to Phoenix many yrs ago. My team plays 2 blocks from the projects, ifin they played next to Soldier field this city would be 70% Sox fans.
Sorry i dont mean to pick on you but this is a great example of how confusing the new fan of baseball is to me. Your team is talking about adding real talent to your team and fans of the sox are worried the team is trying to be good. Its like a wierd bizzarro world to me. Not that long ago fans would have run owners out of town on a rail if they were actively putting a loser on the field while simultaneously pocketing millions. Now this new breed of fan gets mad if the team tries to win unless this mysterious “time is right”.
If Mondesi can improve his plate discipline now’s probably the best time to try a move to CF with Cain gone
Complaints about his bat should not be the reason he gets moved from SS, when the bat you are replacing him with is Escobar. Escobar’s bat is weak for a back up catcher. It should be easier to find a CF who can hit than a SS.
They’ve screwed the pooch on Mondesi. Forced him up to MLB multiple times when it was clear he wasn’t ready to hit major league pitching. Moving him to CF now would just add to the trouble. We need to just give him a full season at SS and see what he can do. He can’t be any worse than Escobar and we’re going to stink this season regardless.
I agree Yank. I’ve a Royals fan since the beginning and I must confess, I have no idea what they are doing this winter.
It’s like they are stunned that the short window closed and weren’t prepared for it. You would think after taking around 30 years to get it right the organization would learn from the mistakes made and build on the good moves they made to become a contender again
The Royals good moves were twenty years of high draft picks and Davis being such a horrible starter, that they were forced to move him to the pen. Not exactly a plan you want to repeat.
20 years of losing had nothing to do with the 2014-2015 run. If anything the decades of losing made people more impatient and almost forced a preemptive rebuild. The Grienke trade and maybe moving Gordon to LF were the beginnings of that process. Moore drafted key position players like Hos, Moose, hit on some cheap international signings and made a couple key trades. Have to give him some credit.
My only worry about Alec Wilson moving to the rotation is that he was one of the few reliable pieces of their pen. They seem to have candidates for the rotation. The bullpen still looks exceptionally weak.
His FB was really pedestrian as a MiLB starter then his changeup never developed at all. I like the guy a lot and was sad when Boston traded him in the 1st place. Hate to see him get moved and feel this is a poor decision on detroit’s part for someone who has thrived really well with the mediocre fb/slider combo Alex has
I don’t understand why The White Sox would be interested in Machado. Dealing prospects right now for them would be one step forward, two steps back, especially if they do trade for Machado, and then he leaves in free agency.
For a year it would be fun to watch batting practice.
It was either the reported claim that White Sox could entice Machado to sign on afterwards, or it’s a way to make a legitimate interest for him when he is up next year. I’ll bet anything the O’s are still wondering if they should’ve done it. But that’s neither here or there now. White Sox are in play next year.
He’s going to the Yankees
Your mom is going to the Yankees.
Crazy my mom just went to the Yankees also…She highly recommends the pinstripes, said they look ridiculously slimming!!
That’s mature. Mom jokes
Do Yankees fans realize how obnoxious and entitled they sound? The idea that one team should be able to spend more than three or four other teams to win a title disgusts me. What the hell do you need with Machado anyway at this point?
Tribe fans, Why in the world didn’t you grab Ozuna for Mejia? It made so much sense and was a better return for Miami.
Because it would have cost more than just Mejia. They probably would have asked for McKenzie, too.
Didn’t even cost the cards a mejia type prospect.
Yeah, I was incredibly frustrated the Braves didn’t even try to outbid the Cards..They could have easily beat that lackluster deal the Marlins ended up accepting!!
What it cost them and what the Tribe would have been asked for are two different things. Maybe that’s why they got what they got, because nobody else was willing to pony up?
Certainly the indians have a middle class of prospects they could have dealt from and not included mckenzie or mejia, no?
How do you know if you do not ask
Lotta White Sox negativity going on here, Ventura was an awful coach but it’s ultimately up to the players to perform, on paper the Sox had a roster that should have competed for the division during that span, so Hahn had to choose a lane. after seeing what Royals, Astros & Cubs have done im excited about Sox future. None of those teams had the amount of big talent to trade that Sox had. Hahn’s done pretty well maximizing his returns on players we did trade, so it shoildnt take 5 years to rebuild like it did with those others teams. Next year you better believe Rick is gonna be in on big name free agents. Sox gonna compete for division in 2019. W.S. Champs in 2020
Honestly though, I have my doubts about the Sox spending big money on an elite FA. They’ve only done it once in my lifetime (about 30 years ago). They have the money to get a Harper or Machado, but the owner is tight with his money and extremely risk averse. The best case scenario is the team gets sold by the Reinsdorf family soon.
And whether you guys want to admit it or not, unless they overpay by a ton a lot of these guys will not want to go to the south side. The cubs are the big sexy team in Chicago. Not trying to bust anyone’s chops, I’m just stating what seems to be a fact
Jerry could care less about Bulls future, but i guarantee u he wants another W.S. trophy. He’s 82 now, i’m well aware of his reluctance to spend like the Yankees but he will be in on 2019 & 2020 bigtime free agents and we’ll land a couple of them. Hopefully Arenado is one. I dont want a Darvish, Arrieta or J.D. Genghis Hahn might be in on a J.D. from 2-3 years ago. McCaskey is the owners who need to sell in Chicago. Jerry gave Kenny plenty of leash to spend. Renteria would have had those teams Ventura coached for 5 yrs in playoffs at least twice. Jerry doesnt have the patience or time not to be competitive next yr & neither do I. Thats why Jose will get extended b/c Sox org. plans on competing in 2019 & Jose’s a class act who swings adamn good bat
simple-chifan, if that were true all FA would go to two teams. You should really try to be more objective when you post stuff like this. Your jealous and rage towards another baseball team existing in Chicago make you sound shallow and dumb.
Grebek, Managers don’t impact tge outcome of a game as much as you seem to think. None of those teams during the Ventura years had enough positional talent to contend. I would also argue tgey didn’t have enough depth in the rotation or bullpen either. The Sox have just been very mediocre for a little over a decade. I chalk their mediocrity up to their failure to acquire quality FAs over the years. They spent way too much money on marginal talent, which gets you to .500 and stuck.
Normally I’d agree with the manager not making a huge difference, but with Ventura, I’m on the other side. He was embarrassingly bad.
As a general rule of thumb, I personally think a bad manager can hurt a team a heck of a lot more than a great manager can help a team. Just my opinion though.
“Couldn’t care less”
Hahn has said these things take 5 or 6 years. As if he knew.
Hahn says what everyone does. Its called under promise and over deliver. Basic business.
What do you think he will say its only 3 years then if it does not happen the Sox look like the rebuild failed and that is absurd.
Its no different then every injured player. TJS for example. Ever player comes back sooner then “expected” the player is famously “ahead of schedule” which is bs.
It takes 3 to 5 years to rebuild. Considering where they started (weak farm system, few tradeable assets other than Sale, Q, Abreu and Eaton) I’m thinking 2020 will be our year.
Way too soon, you are predicting rookies win them a title? Not denying they have a lot of elite talent in the system, but its still a team game and this is still the FO that gave away a top 10 overall prospect for James Shields, so I would not be confident in Hahn’s ability to identify the best MLB players for the team to build around the young core, it does not seem like his strongest trait as a GM.
That said, the young core prospects he got are all amazing, and 2021-2022 is their time, not 19-20 as no rebuilding team immediately gels anyway. Brewers and Oakland are closer.
If I remember correctly it was Williams not Hahn that made that trade. Tatis was not a top 10 when traded either. Really easy to look back now and say man that was a terrible trade.
Just like the Brooklyn Dodgers let away Roberto Clemente get away for nothing.
It’s easy to scrutinize and criticize years later about deals made without apparent or glaring inequities at the time the deal is made.
They didn’t give away a top 10 prospect for Shields. They gave away a prospect that nobody thought anything of at the time, and he eventually turned into a top 10 prospect. If anybody in the baseball universe expected him to turn into a top 10 prospect, he would’ve signed for a heck of a lot more than the $700k the Sox gave him. Very unfortunate he’s not in the system anymore, but it’s hard to legitimately blame them for messing up when nobody expected much of anything from this kid.
That being said, I’d love to have him in the pipeline right now.
The team that traded for him obviously saw something.
Tatis Jr wasn’t top 100 MILB, nor top 10 in the WSox system at the time. Get your facts straight.
Great point on differences. Cubs and Astros at least never had the good under control valuable talent to trade. The Sox were then able to turn their terrible farm into a top farm system. It took the Cubs and Astros several years to get to that point. I always thought the Sox rebuild would be 3 years. This is year two. Next year they can be in position to contend for years.
Remember last offseason when the A’s offered Encarnacion a 2/50 deal? Why don’t they put that offer out right now to all the elite FA’s still left to sign and see if anyone blinks?
Well Justin-Turner for example its alleged the Bosox have a 5/125 offer to JD. Thats $25M per year. So why would he take 2 years instead of 5 and take it with Oakland of all places and be stuck on a loser team in that terrible stadium of all places.
And if willing to take 2 years why would he not go back to Az whom I am sure would jump at 2/50 deal
I would be very surprised ” to see the (White) Sox make a play for one of the big-name free agents still on the market.”. Exactly who did you have in mind among the remaining top tier of free agents? It makes little sense for the White Sox to invest in any of Yu Darvish, Jake Arrieta, Alex Cobb or Lance Lynn with their apparent organizational strength in young starting pitchers. At this point in their rebuild, I can’t fathom the White Sox spending on a long term contract for a pitcher, especially with 3 of those 4 also requiring a loss of a draft pick next June.
Among the other remaining top free agent positional players I don’t see any reason for them to offer a long term contract either especially one that also the stigma of a QO attached to them. At best, they might bite on a shorter term investment at a position of need that they could flip in the next couple of years, perhaps reuniting with 3B Todd Frazier with a contract similar to what they gave catcher Wellington Castillo earlier this offseason.
Next year might be the time for the White Sox to put their money where their mouth is and invest in a younger type impact FA like Manny Machado.
I’m not saying Chicago won’t be waiving their money next fall, but there is a limited number of “top” FAs. They will be competing against NY, LA, SF, the other Chicago team, Phi, Atl, Bos… It will be interesting to see if any one takes it.
Run the numbers on salaries and about half those teams are eliminated. LAD, NYY and Bos would tax themselves into oblivion if they acquired a record breaking contract next year without dumping considerable salary.
simschifan, remember that nobody wanted to go the the North side either… if Lester didn’t have a prior relationship with Theo and Jed, he would have never gone there… and on top of that, the cubs had to overpay and give him an extra year and more money that anyone else was willing to offer… if not for that relationship and overpay, there would have been much less credibility to the rebuild and the likes of zobrist, lackey, fowler and the overpaid RF may never have followed… just saying
White Sox have no intention of emptying the bank vault for Machado or trading prospects for him. That would defy the logic of the team rebuild Hahn is working on. The Brewers signing of Cain for 5 years seems risky at best. He is nearly 32 with modest power. He could be used as trade bait for pitching help.
Which team worked harder than White Sox to be in position to make a play for any of next year’s franchise FA?
Not one team will be in better shape next year. I predict the White Sox will be huge players and in on all top tier free agents in both 2019 and 2020. Jerry Reinsdorf will approve any purchase if he thinks the team is ready to win, which they should be by next year.
minoso9: Per this site, Lorenzo Cain has a no-trade provision that offers complete protection in year one of the deal and limited protection each season thereafter, dropping down to five teams in the final year of the contract. More specifically, MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy adds that Cain can block deals to 15 teams in 2019, seven teams in 2020 and five in 2021-22. He’s not being traded for pitching anytime soon.
Reinsdorf will absolutely be 100% open to emptying his vault for Manny Machado, Bryce Harper or Clayton Kershaw when they become free agents at the end of 2018. He made a similar commitment years ago when he authorized the signing of Albert Belle and he’ll do it again. He’s sure to realize that he’s getting up there in age and knows that he can’t take his money with him. His kids will still be left in great financial shape regardless of signing any one or more of these three.