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Free Agency - How confident are you?

The winter of our discontent   

146 members have voted

  1. 1. What do you think will REALLY happen this winter?

    • I'm confident they'll land a big fish (e.g. Cole)
      7
    • I'm confident they'll land a solid FA (e.g. Grandal) that actually makes an impact
      45
    • I think any FA signings will fall in the "decent" range
      31
    • I'm hoping beyond hope that the FO can get out of their own way and at least sign one person that's not crap
      29
    • This winter is going to be another pile of hot garbage
      34


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7 minutes ago, mmmmmbeeer said:

I think we'll see a lot more action via trade than we will FA.  I think Hahn is more comfortable working with trading personnel than he is working with Jerry on money when it comes to a big splash.  Which isn't to say we won't sign any FA, there are going to be some decent, economically sound pickups to be made for the pen, backup C, and maybe a 5th starter.  RF and a good SP will likely come via trade.  

Sox probably have what it takes it acquire one or the other via trade, but they can’t get a TOR SP and a legit RF without moving the young MLB assets or Robert/Madrigal/Vaughn. 

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I believe past history is in this case not indicative of this years actions.  Jerry and Rick know that this rebuild is the last go round for Jerry.  They will go big.

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19 minutes ago, Lip Man 1 said:

When you have to go back to the Albert Belle signing to show the Sox were willing to spend top dollar to get top talent that's all you need to know about next off season.

Probably not happening...hope it does, but I'm not holding my breath.

The can CAN and SHOULD get five or six solid free agents though who can fill holes, provide leadership and actually produce...at least on paper...strange things happen when free agents put on that Sox uniform as history shows they fall off the cliff.

One thing is for sure if the Sox with a young team on the rise and plenty of payroll space don't make significant improvements I think the fan base will basically say they'll never trust this front office again (i.e. fool me once, shame on you...fool me twice, shame on me)

Shouldn't Abreau count?  6 year $68 million was a pretty ballsy move in 2013 for a guy that never played in the majors.  And Robert's $52 million deal (26 mill signing bonus and $26 mill tax)...for a 19 year old.  And with each era...Fisk, Dye, AJ...they had big contributors that were free agents.  I know it doesn't fit the sites narrative to suggest that this front office IS trying and some of their moves aren't terrible but the negativity is overwhelming.  I think they DID try hard...for Machado...they offered according to Ken Rosenthal...$250 m with incentives to get to $350m plus two of his best friends and his brother in law.  A confident betting man takes the chance at $350 with the downside being generational wealth.   He chose sunny California and the bigger guarantee.   Either choice was not wrong for Manny.  But too many on here think the Sox made a stupid offer...there was always only going to be one winner for Machado.  As for Harper...I think it was reasonable not to pay the guy $350 m.  There are currently 13 outfielders that have a higher OPS than him....he's basically having the same year as Marcell Ozuna.   I think keeping your power dry for when you REALLY need it (they weren't ready this year even with one of those two) makes sense.  That said...they'd better spend it this year.  I just think they will and think it's unfair to suggest they never will.  

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4 minutes ago, ChiSox59 said:

Sox probably have what it takes it acquire one or the other via trade, but they can’t get a TOR SP and a legit RF without moving the young MLB assets or Robert/Madrigal/Vaughn. 

By "good" SP, I mean a #3 reliable innings eater.  Sure, it won't be cheap but I don't think we need to target a TOR guy with Kopech, Gio, and Cease.  RF, we just need to acquire someone better than what's available on the FA market which, apparently, shouldn't be too hard to do.  I think this is especially true given we're in a position to eat salary.  While Heyward wouldn't be my choice, he's a good example from earlier in the thread of a guy who could be snagged easily as long as we absorb the contract. 

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34 minutes ago, RTC said:

You won't be happy.

 

There wasn't this past winter either but that didn't stop them.

 

I agree for the most part, but it probably depends on if they're able to sign anyone.  For instance, if they do sign 1 or 2 SP, that could make someone like Stiever available.

2019 was a non-compete year from the get go.  2020 they should have almost all of the core pieces up and won't be spending money on filler.  It would have been pretty dumb to spend that kind of money last year.  

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1 hour ago, caulfield12 said:

Marcell Ozuna?  

Ozuna is a LF only. He hasn't the arm for RF. Pederson doesn't have the arm for RF either, but he can play CF and Robert could play RF if it came to that. 

Edited by Jack Parkman

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46 minutes ago, michelangelosmonkey said:

1. Shouldn't Abreau count?  6 year $68 million was a pretty ballsy move in 2013 for a guy that never played in the majors.  And Robert's $52 million deal (26 mill signing bonus and $26 mill tax)...for a 19 year old. 

 

2. And with each era...Fisk, Dye, AJ...they had big contributors that were free agents. 

 

3. I know it doesn't fit the sites narrative to suggest that this front office IS trying and some of their moves aren't terrible but the negativity is overwhelming.  I think they DID try hard...for Machado...they offered according to Ken Rosenthal...$250 m with incentives to get to $350m plus two of his best friends and his brother in law.  

OK, a lot to unpack here, but I divided up your post into the 3 ideas that bear analysis, IMO.

On #1, the lesson that should have been learned by this front office is to know when you have scant competition for a player's signature, and when there will be PILES of teams trying to sign a player. In the cases of Abreu and Robert, there were few suitors, and NONE among the moneyed class of MLB. For that matter, there was scant competition for Machado and Harper, but they fvkced that one up, unfortunately. Turning to THIS offseason, for Cole's signature, I can envision the yankmees, the scrubs, Atlanta, Philly, and Texas, and LAAAA all being interested, and all having more money to spend, and all being closer to competing than the SOX. Part of winning FA is identifying the player, and part of it is signability.

If you've been a shitty team for a decade, AND reluctant to spend, your chances to sign top talent in FA are remote. [Unless there are few competing suitors.]

 

On #2, I don't think that the free agencies of yesteryear are all that cogent to today's discussion, in all honesty. There are MASSIVE differences in the CBAs, for example. [Dye would have had a draft pick attached to him, were he a FA today.] There aren't NEARLY as many stupid front offices in MLB as there was when AJP was stupidly given away for free. Were it TODAY, the SFGs would have rightly tried to keep AJP to rebuild his value, THEN trade him away. As for Fisk, that was so long ago, if memory serves, he was only a FA because he came off an injury.

Free agency [both MLB veterans and International FA] have long been a massive failing by this front office.

 

Lastly, on #3, this front office crapped their pants on the pursuit of Machado. In no way was their incentives-based deal a good one for Machado. And in no way was this org worrying about a $300MM guarantee cogent, given the natural inflation of top player salaries and the $/WAR for either one. Sorry, but it was a MASSIVE fuckup, and one that will haunt this team for a long time. There won't be another 26 year old stud available in FA for YEARS. There won't be another 26 year old stud, AND none of the RICH teams interested/involved for decades. If you want to behave like a "small market team," then you'd better learn to strike when you can.

This front office has earned the criticism and scorn, and we are RIGHT to pile it on them until they prove otherwise. 

Edited by Two-Gun Pete
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12 minutes ago, Jack Parkman said:

Ozuna is a LF only. He hasn't the arm for RF. Pederson doesn't have the arm for RF either, but he can play CF and Robert could play RF if it came to that. 

Pederson is fine in right.

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4 hours ago, ChiSox59 said:

The bolded is really the bottom line.  The Sox currently have $17M committed to 2020 payroll.  With arbitration, they'll be around $50M without signing anybody.  They could add $75M to next year's payroll and still be below average.  

Are you including Abreu in that $50M?

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50 minutes ago, michelangelosmonkey said:

Shouldn't Abreau count?  6 year $68 million was a pretty ballsy move in 2013 for a guy that never played in the majors.  And Robert's $52 million deal (26 mill signing bonus and $26 mill tax)...for a 19 year old.  And with each era...Fisk, Dye, AJ...they had big contributors that were free agents.  I know it doesn't fit the sites narrative to suggest that this front office IS trying and some of their moves aren't terrible but the negativity is overwhelming.  I think they DID try hard...for Machado...they offered according to Ken Rosenthal...$250 m with incentives to get to $350m plus two of his best friends and his brother in law.  A confident betting man takes the chance at $350 with the downside being generational wealth.   He chose sunny California and the bigger guarantee.   Either choice was not wrong for Manny.  But too many on here think the Sox made a stupid offer...there was always only going to be one winner for Machado.  As for Harper...I think it was reasonable not to pay the guy $350 m.  There are currently 13 outfielders that have a higher OPS than him....he's basically having the same year as Marcell Ozuna.   I think keeping your power dry for when you REALLY need it (they weren't ready this year even with one of those two) makes sense.  That said...they'd better spend it this year.  I just think they will and think it's unfair to suggest they never will.  

Excellent post.  We are thinking along the same line.

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1 hour ago, ChiSox59 said:

Sox probably have what it takes it acquire one or the other via trade, but they can’t get a TOR SP and a legit RF without moving the young MLB assets or Robert/Madrigal/Vaughn. 

The Sox are going to be hard pressed to get a TOR starter via trade even with Madrigal or Vaughn as the centerpiece.  The secondary pieces are just not that valuable at the moment.

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31 minutes ago, Two-Gun Pete said:

OK, a lot to unpack here, but I divided up your post into the 3 ideas that bear analysis, IMO.

On #1, the lesson that should have been learned by this front office is to know when you have scant competition for a player's signature, and when there will be PILES of teams trying to sign a player. In the cases of Abreu and Robert, there were few suitors, and NONE among the moneyed class of MLB. For that matter, there was scant competition for Machado and Harper, but they fvkced that one up, unfortunately. Turning to THIS offseason, for Cole's signature, I can envision the yankmees, the scrubs, Atlanta, Philly, and Texas, and LAAAA all being interested, and all having more money to spend, and all being closer to competing than the SOX. Part of winning FA is identifying the player, and part of it is signability.

If you've been a shitty team for a decade, AND reluctant to spend, your chances to sign top talent in FA are remote. [Unless there are few competing suitors.]

 

On #2, I don't think that the free agencies of yesteryear are all that cogent to today's discussion, in all honesty. There are MASSIVE differences in the CBAs, for example. [Dye would have had a draft pick attached to him, were he a FA today.] There aren't NEARLY as many stupid front offices in MLB as there was when AJP was stupidly given away for free. Were it TODAY, the SFGs would have rightly tried to keep AJP to rebuild his value, THEN trade him away. As for Fisk, that was so long ago, if memory serves, he was only a FA because he came off an injury.

Free agency [both MLB veterans and International FA] have long been a massive failing by this front office.

 

Lastly, on #3, this front office crapped their pants on the pursuit of Machado. In no way was their incentives-based deal a good one for Machado. And in no way was this org worrying about a $300MM guarantee cogent, given the natural inflation of top player salaries and the $/WAR for either one. Sorry, but it was a MASSIVE fuckup, and one that will haunt this team for a long time. There won't be another 26 year old stud available in FA for YEARS. There won't be another 26 year old stud, AND none of the RICH teams interested/involved for decades. If you want to behave like a "small market team," then you'd better learn to strike when you can.

This front office has earned the criticism and scorn, and we are RIGHT to pile it on them until they prove otherwise. 

#1 is a fair point...but also suggests the Wsox DID swim in the deep end of the pool with Abreau and Robert and they have recently won both of those...and I think those are more relevant than condemning them for trying to patch together a contender when we had the Sale/Quintana/Rodon potential.  

#2  Only relevant when the premise is "reinsdorf is a cheap bastard that will never spend on A free agents".  there are data points that say he will and has.   Not enough for some and CLEARLY they need to push the chips to the center this off season. 

#3...above a certain dollar level there are things that might make a difference.  Being creative at that point was worthwhile.  At some point the agent says...gentlemen submit your final offer...and the Sox didn't work.  But the idea that if the Sox had offer a flat $300 mill with no incentives and no friends...they would have won the contest.  It didn't work, pivot.  (though really...your points about 26 year old superstars available for just money...yes...they should have got it done).

 

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4 hours ago, SonofaRoache said:

We aren't signing a big fish like Cole. I do think we sign 2 impact starters like Bum and Wood, we will acquire an impact RF somehow, and will sign a bullpen arm. Our FA class will have a big impact on the team but no stars. 

 I would be extatic with a free agent haul like that.

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I will dos this place before reading thousands of posts about guys who do not want to play here. 

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4 hours ago, mqr said:

I'd personally like to avoid 36 year olds off bounce back years

Our lineup would actually be perfect with Gordon if we acquire two starters and a bullpen arm. Gordon won't be great, but he will play good defense and not be a dead bat. He would bat 9th in our lineup so you can do worse than him I suppose. He and Robert will also make up for the bad D we will get in left. 

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1 minute ago, SonofaRoache said:

Our lineup would actually be perfect with Gordon if we acquire two starters and a bullpen arm. Gordon won't be great, but he will play good defense and not be a dead bat. He would bat 9th in our lineup so you can do worse than him I suppose. He and Robert will also make up for the bad D we will get in left. 

Who’s the last player 36 or older to have a really good season?  Markakis and Zobrist are the only names that come to mind.  

And playing Jimenez in RF with that arm is just not a good plan, either.

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1 hour ago, Jack Parkman said:

Ozuna is a LF only. He hasn't the arm for RF. Pederson doesn't have the arm for RF either, but he can play CF and Robert could play RF if it came to that. 

 What if they move Jimenez to DH and sign ozuna for left field? 

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2 hours ago, Two-Gun Pete said:

OK, a lot to unpack here, but I divided up your post into the 3 ideas that bear analysis, IMO.

On #1, the lesson that should have been learned by this front office is to know when you have scant competition for a player's signature, and when there will be PILES of teams trying to sign a player. In the cases of Abreu and Robert, there were few suitors, and NONE among the moneyed class of MLB. For that matter, there was scant competition for Machado and Harper, but they fvkced that one up, unfortunately. Turning to THIS offseason, for Cole's signature, I can envision the yankmees, the scrubs, Atlanta, Philly, and Texas, and LAAAA all being interested, and all having more money to spend, and all being closer to competing than the SOX. Part of winning FA is identifying the player, and part of it is signability.

If you've been a shitty team for a decade, AND reluctant to spend, your chances to sign top talent in FA are remote. [Unless there are few competing suitors.]

 

On #2, I don't think that the free agencies of yesteryear are all that cogent to today's discussion, in all honesty. There are MASSIVE differences in the CBAs, for example. [Dye would have had a draft pick attached to him, were he a FA today.] There aren't NEARLY as many stupid front offices in MLB as there was when AJP was stupidly given away for free. Were it TODAY, the SFGs would have rightly tried to keep AJP to rebuild his value, THEN trade him away. As for Fisk, that was so long ago, if memory serves, he was only a FA because he came off an injury.

Free agency [both MLB veterans and International FA] have long been a massive failing by this front office.

 

Lastly, on #3, this front office crapped their pants on the pursuit of Machado. In no way was their incentives-based deal a good one for Machado. And in no way was this org worrying about a $300MM guarantee cogent, given the natural inflation of top player salaries and the $/WAR for either one. Sorry, but it was a MASSIVE fuckup, and one that will haunt this team for a long time. There won't be another 26 year old stud available in FA for YEARS. There won't be another 26 year old stud, AND none of the RICH teams interested/involved for decades. If you want to behave like a "small market team," then you'd better learn to strike when you can.

This front office has earned the criticism and scorn, and we are RIGHT to pile it on them until they prove otherwise. 

No more Machado please. A robotic parrot would be more interesting. 

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2 hours ago, BackDoorBreach said:

2019 was a non-compete year from the get go.  2020 they should have almost all of the core pieces up and won't be spending money on filler.  It would have been pretty dumb to spend that kind of money last year.  

As for the bold, I hope you're right, I really do.  As far as the sentence after the bold, that's what they tried to do, so by your definition that would make them dumb.  I agree, hence my concern.

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3 hours ago, michelangelosmonkey said:

#1 is a fair point...but also suggests the Wsox DID swim in the deep end of the pool with Abreau and Robert and they have recently won both of those...and I think those are more relevant than condemning them for trying to patch together a contender when we had the Sale/Quintana/Rodon potential.   Oh, “condemning them for trying to ‘patch’ together a contender when we had Sale...” is quite relevant.   It was that half-ass ‘patch’ job, shopping in the bargain bin for the likes of Cabrera, LaRoche, Rollins, Austin Jackson, Latos, etc., that ended up wasting having those affordable, core players around and ultimately forced this lengthy rebuild on the fan base. 

#2  Only relevant when the premise is "reinsdorf is a cheap bastard that will never spend on A free agents".  there are data points that say he will and has.   Not enough for some and CLEARLY they need to push the chips to the center this off season. Your “data points” for Reinsdorf spending on “A free agents” during his overstayed, 39 year tenure are all of TWO - Fisk in 1981, and Belle in 1996.  That is it!  Just TWO ‘A free agents” acquired over nearly four decades.  And you are right - that is “not enough for some (MOST!) and CLEARLY”!

#3...above a certain dollar level there are things that might make a difference.  Being creative at that point was worthwhile.  At some point the agent says...gentlemen submit your final offer...and the Sox didn't work.  But the idea that if the Sox had offer a flat $300 mill with no incentives and no friends...they would have won the contest.  It didn't work, pivot.  (though really...your points about 26 year old superstars available for just money...yes...they should have got it done).  Don’t even try and defend last offseason’s debacle with this “It didn’t work, pivot” nonsense.  That was nothing short of a massive fail by this owner and his so-called front office.  MASSIVE!  The “certain dollar level” should have been met by this major market team with its incredibly low payroll.  PERIOD!  No sugarcoating or excuse making necessary on that failure, pls.   Thank you.

 

 

Edited by Fan O'Faust
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4 hours ago, Two-Gun Pete said:

OK, a lot to unpack here, but I divided up your post into the 3 ideas that bear analysis, IMO.

On #1, the lesson that should have been learned by this front office is to know when you have scant competition for a player's signature, and when there will be PILES of teams trying to sign a player. In the cases of Abreu and Robert, there were few suitors, and NONE among the moneyed class of MLB. For that matter, there was scant competition for Machado and Harper, but they fvkced that one up, unfortunately. Turning to THIS offseason, for Cole's signature, I can envision the yankmees, the scrubs, Atlanta, Philly, and Texas, and LAAAA all being interested, and all having more money to spend, and all being closer to competing than the SOX. Part of winning FA is identifying the player, and part of it is signability.

If you've been a shitty team for a decade, AND reluctant to spend, your chances to sign top talent in FA are remote. [Unless there are few competing suitors.]

 

On #2, I don't think that the free agencies of yesteryear are all that cogent to today's discussion, in all honesty. There are MASSIVE differences in the CBAs, for example. [Dye would have had a draft pick attached to him, were he a FA today.] There aren't NEARLY as many stupid front offices in MLB as there was when AJP was stupidly given away for free. Were it TODAY, the SFGs would have rightly tried to keep AJP to rebuild his value, THEN trade him away. As for Fisk, that was so long ago, if memory serves, he was only a FA because he came off an injury.

Free agency [both MLB veterans and International FA] have long been a massive failing by this front office.

 

Lastly, on #3, this front office crapped their pants on the pursuit of Machado. In no way was their incentives-based deal a good one for Machado. And in no way was this org worrying about a $300MM guarantee cogent, given the natural inflation of top player salaries and the $/WAR for either one. Sorry, but it was a MASSIVE fuckup, and one that will haunt this team for a long time. There won't be another 26 year old stud available in FA for YEARS. There won't be another 26 year old stud, AND none of the RICH teams interested/involved for decades. If you want to behave like a "small market team," then you'd better learn to strike when you can.

This front office has earned the criticism and scorn, and we are RIGHT to pile it on them until they prove otherwise. 

Excellent post and summery. One correction of a historical nature, Fisk became a free agent because Boston and GM Haywood Sullivan did not send him a contract offer for the 1981 season within the required time.

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26 minutes ago, Fan O'Faust said:

 

#1--if by "half assed" you meant that it didn't work...well clearly you have evidence after the fact on your side.  But in 2014 the signing of Adam laroche was not bargain basement...he signed for 2 years $25 million coming off an .820 OPS year, 2.5 WAR season.   Melky Cabrera was coming off a 3.3 WAR season.  They also signed Zack Duke and David Robertson and traded for 2 WAR Jeff Smardja.  At the time it was not a crazy idiotic plan to go for it with a Sale/Quintana/Rodon/Smardja rotation to try to recapture the 2005 winning formula.  If you want to be butt hurt at the management because they tried and failed...enjoy.  

#2 It wasn't TWO data points...I listed Dye, AJ, Fisk, Abreau, Robert...but there were a lot of others...some successful and some not.  But really...you know how many World series since 2004 the big market Yankees have won?  Same as the White Sox.  And the White Sox have more than those big spending Dodgers.  Its not been fun to follow lately but I love the rebuild and i think it has us set up great for a real run of success.

#3 It wasn't a massive fail.  The Phillies were at least a year ahead of us in the rebuild process...they spent $400 million on Harper, McCuthceon and Robertson and helped them to a few games over .500 .  One can certainly make a cogent argument that, given the exciting players coming up, taking $300 million and spreading it over 4 or 5  good players instead of one great player might be more prudent.   Maybe not...maybe they will be proven wrong.  But to suggest an epic fail suggests you have a much clearer view of the unknowable than the rest of us.    

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My prediction

We get Gannet to play 2nd until Madrigal is ready then he becomes a super sub (if we fail Leury holds 2nd until Madrigal is ready)

We land one of Castellanos/Puig/Ozuna to man RF. Eventual OF of FA/Robert/Eloy

We land a SP the caliber of Bum/Wood. Rotation of Gio, Kopech, Cease, FA, Lopez (I would like some Nova type SP/s since Kopech/Cease will be on innings limits.

We sign some BP help

 

I could live with the lineup below and the above rotation for 2020. If we start to contend I think that's when top tier FAs may think about signing with us in '21 which is when I truly think we start to take over the central.

C. McCann/Collins

1st/DH. Abreu/Collins/Vaughn

DH. Abreu/Collins

2nd. Scooter/Madrigal

SS. Anderson

3rd. Moncada

OF. FA/Robert/Eloy

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