White Sox Slow Motion Fire Sale


That should really be a question, I suppose. Is this what we’re seeing in Chicago? The White Sox – after spending a lot of money to go ‘all in’ on the 2011 season – flopped due solely to bad outings by good relievers in clutch situations, Adam Dunn and Alex Rios. If they kept their 2011 roster intact, they wouldn’t really be bad bets for a bounce-back 90 win season in 2012. But… it doesn’t look like that is going to happen.

We’ve heard that Mark Buerhle might be going just about anywhere, including Detroit, but it seems highly unlikely that he’ll actually wind up back with the Pale Hose. We’ve also heard that other members of the White Sox rotation, in particular near-ace John Danks, are available at the right price. The Sox have been shopping Tiger-killing power hitter Carlos Quentin for quite some time. Now we hear that the Twins are talking to suitors for former closer Matt Thornton – a very good reliever, but one of those whose clutch implosions helped to doom the 2011 season.

Now it doesn’t take a Nostradamus to predict that if the White Sox lose Buerhle, Quentin, Thornton, Danks and Gavin Floyd (presumably for upper-minor prospects) their chances of getting 90 wins in 2012 become vanishingly small – even if Adam Dunn and Alex Rios stop sabotaging their efforts. Of course, none of these deals have actually occurred and even Buerhle has yet to sign so it isn’t impossible that the White Sox might enter spring training having made no changes to their roster at all of any significance. All of that could change in a hurry come winter meetings time, though. What all these rumors do is send a signal about the Sox’ intentions for the coming year, and those intentions don’t seem to include reloading or contending. The rumors scream that Chicago wants a fire sale, to burn the house down and start over, but they aren’t quite sure (yet) that they are willing to part with their assets at fire sale prices. The White Sox, it seems, are looking to enter a rebuilding mode. It’s an odd rebuilding mode to say the least, since they’ll still be holding onto their highest priced players and their farm system doesn’t look to have enough real prospects to flesh out a major league roster in the short term.