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BackDoorBreach

Offseason Moves - Grade em'

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Assuming the Sox are done with major off-season aquisitions I'd like to see grades for each individual move.

Abreu extension: C-

I don't hate Jose Abreu but I thought the QO was exactly what he should have got and ended with.  I'm not a fan of essentially giving him a 3 year deal which will include his age 34 and 35 seasons in the heart of contention.  With Vaughn likely up in 2021, Abreu's extension locks him in as our DH as he ages, instead of leaving some roster flexibility for a more impactful bat.

Grandal signing: A

I liked the idea of Grandal as a target but I thought the FO would look at him as a luxury and not a need.  This is a great signing in every way and the aggressiveness the Sox attacked him with was fantastic.  Grandal breaks up the handedness and adds great OBP and decent power to the lineup.  Defensively he should be extremely impactful to our young staff.

Mazara trade: D

Thanks, I hate it. I've argued this up and down multiple times on here and this move is still ass.  If being 24 was a skillset I might feel more neutral than negative but it's not.  I don't care that they traded Walker. I don't care if anybody in the minors after Vaughn is traded as long as it is for impact.  Mazara, unfortunately, has not done much of anything impactful.  He's a shitty fielder and will be reduced to a platoon role.  This is not a win now move in any way, shape, or form.  This is a move you make when you are a rebuilding team as Mazara has been replacement level his 4 year career and was a legitimate non-tender candidate for the Rangers.  There were multiple other OF's available that would have added a lot more to the table than Mazara.  Using the excuse that he'll be our #8 hitter or he's an upgrade from last year is not valid.  He has been at best a 4th OF on a winning team in his career.

Keuchel signing: C

Keuchel does some nice...or different things for our rotation.  Soft tossing lefty that lives low and has the pedigree and mentality to be a nice addition.  I didn't want anything to do with Keuchel before FA started as his peripheral numbers have been declining as he has aged.  I was also thinking we would strike a deal with a pitcher with more upside and #2 potential.  Unfortunately that didn't happen and now our bearded friend will likely be our #2, for now.  He gives you innings if nothing else and shouldn't be a bad signing as he is still effective enough to give you 2-2.5 WAR.  At the time he was signed I wanted him more than Ryu as Keuchel can stay on the field.  Don't mistake it though, one of Kopech/Cease/Lopez now HAS to really ramp it up with a rotation spot locked up for the next 3-4 years.

Gio G signing: B+

I like this signing and think it's ALMOST perfect assuming he's a placeholder and insurance.  Gio still has some in the tank I think and should be good for what he'll be asked to do as Kopech gets back.  

EE signing: B+

This guy fucks still at the plate even in his twilight years and has an ingrained hatred for Twins pitching. On it's face the move is win now and he should add 30+ bombs to a club that was power starved last year.  My gripe with this is that I would have prefered to use the DH spot with a combination of Abreu/Grandal/Collins/McCann to keep their bats in the lineup while staying fresh and to add more position versatility to bench.  

Luis Robert extension: A++++

Easily my favorite move of the offseason.  Not a lot to say about this if you have been paying attention.  Lineup wise we will be nearly full strength OD by extending our most electric prospect. 

Cishek signing: B

I'm a fan of this move in every way.  Cishek was a work horse for the Cubs the last 2 years.  Unfortunately he got stung in the second half last year because Joe Maddon leans on guys TOO hard sometimes.  Cishek should help shorten the game and be a strong 7th inning guy.  He does a good job at inducing soft contact which is why he outperforms FIP nearly every year.  Not a big strikeout guy but hopefully will be very effective with a more "reduced role" with us.  I would have given this an A if he was a secondary piece to a more high leverage arm. 

 

Overall: B to B-

I think the FO deserves a lot of credit for how this offseason turned out and some of the money was actually spent.  I think the Robert extension and locking up Grandal were the 2 most important things they did.  Unfortunately Keuchel doesn't move the needle too much either way I don't think, the Abreu extension is highly questionable from a roster construction standpoint going forward, and Mazara could be another waste in RF and was not really an actual upgrade vs the league.  I think the secondary moves with EE, Cishek, Gio will prove to be pretty impactful this year.  I'd love to be more optimistic but for THIS year I don't think they did enough to surpass the Twins, which means we likely won't be a WC with the A's and Rays just being better teams right now.  I do think we will be playing meaningful baseball in August and September though for the first time in a long time which will at least keep us relevant.  Nice job Rick and Kenny.  Exciting times for Sox fans.

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11 minutes ago, BackDoorBreach said:

Assuming the Sox are done with major off-season aquisitions I'd like to see grades for each individual move.

Abreu extension: C-

I don't hate Jose Abreu but I thought the QO was exactly what he should have got and ended with.  I'm not a fan of essentially giving him a 3 year deal which will include his age 34 and 35 seasons in the heart of contention.  With Vaughn likely up in 2021, Abreu's extension locks him in as our DH as he ages, instead of leaving some roster flexibility for a more impactful bat.

Grandal signing: A

I liked the idea of Grandal as a target but I thought the FO would look at him as a luxury and not a need.  This is a great signing in every way and the aggressiveness the Sox attacked him with was fantastic.  Grandal breaks up the handedness and adds great OBP and decent power to the lineup.  Defensively he should be extremely impactful to our young staff.

Mazara trade: D

Thanks, I hate it. I've argued this up and down multiple times on here and this move is still ass.  If being 24 was a skillset I might feel more neutral than negative but it's not.  I don't care that they traded Walker. I don't care if anybody in the minors after Vaughn is traded as long as it is for impact.  Mazara, unfortunately, has not done much of anything impactful.  He's a shitty fielder and will be reduced to a platoon role.  This is not a win now move in any way, shape, or form.  This is a move you make when you are a rebuilding team as Mazara has been replacement level his 4 year career and was a legitimate non-tender candidate for the Rangers.  There were multiple other OF's available that would have added a lot more to the table than Mazara.  Using the excuse that he'll be our #8 hitter or he's an upgrade from last year is not valid.  He has been at best a 4th OF on a winning team in his career.

Keuchel signing: C

Keuchel does some nice...or different things for our rotation.  Soft tossing lefty that lives low and has the pedigree and mentality to be a nice addition.  I didn't want anything to do with Keuchel before FA started as his peripheral numbers have been declining as he has aged.  I was also thinking we would strike a deal with a pitcher with more upside and #2 potential.  Unfortunately that didn't happen and now our bearded friend will likely be our #2, for now.  He gives you innings if nothing else and shouldn't be a bad signing as he is still effective enough to give you 2-2.5 WAR.  At the time he was signed I wanted him more than Ryu as Keuchel can stay on the field.  Don't mistake it though, one of Kopech/Cease/Lopez now HAS to really ramp it up with a rotation spot locked up for the next 3-4 years.

Gio G signing: B+

I like this signing and think it's ALMOST perfect assuming he's a placeholder and insurance.  Gio still has some in the tank I think and should be good for what he'll be asked to do as Kopech gets back.  

EE signing: B+

This guy fucks still at the plate even in his twilight years and has an ingrained hatred for Twins pitching. On it's face the move is win now and he should add 30+ bombs to a club that was power starved last year.  My gripe with this is that I would have prefered to use the DH spot with a combination of Abreu/Grandal/Collins/McCann to keep their bats in the lineup while staying fresh and to add more position versatility to bench.  

Luis Robert extension: A++++

Easily my favorite move of the offseason.  Not a lot to say about this if you have been paying attention.  Lineup wise we will be nearly full strength OD by extending our most electric prospect. 

Cishek signing: B

I'm a fan of this move in every way.  Cishek was a work horse for the Cubs the last 2 years.  Unfortunately he got stung in the second half last year because Joe Maddon leans on guys TOO hard sometimes.  Cishek should help shorten the game and be a strong 7th inning guy.  He does a good job at inducing soft contact which is why he outperforms FIP nearly every year.  Not a big strikeout guy but hopefully will be very effective with a more "reduced role" with us.  I would have given this an A if he was a secondary piece to a more high leverage arm. 

 

Overall: B to B-

I think the FO deserves a lot of credit for how this offseason turned out and some of the money was actually spent.  I think the Robert extension and locking up Grandal were the 2 most important things they did.  Unfortunately Keuchel doesn't move the needle too much either way I don't think, the Abreu extension is highly questionable from a roster construction standpoint going forward, and Mazara could be another waste in RF and was not really an actual upgrade vs the league.  I think the secondary moves with EE, Cishek, Gio will prove to be pretty impactful this year.  I'd love to be more optimistic but for THIS year I don't think they did enough to surpass the Twins, which means we likely won't be a WC with the A's and Rays just being better teams right now.  I do think we will be playing meaningful baseball in August and September though for the first time in a long time which will at least keep us relevant.  Nice job Rick and Kenny.  Exciting times for Sox fans.

Hard to be against Mazara and for Collins simultaneously.  Collins will eventually get his opportunity, especially if a starter goes down somewhere and McCann is traded.

In the end, they weren’t ready to commit long-term to Ozuna and Castellanos at their reported asking prices, or risk disrupting the positive clubhouse vibes with Puig.  So Mazara is an easy experiment to end...but still has a payoff.  If we looked at his numbers from an 80’s or 90’s perspective, it would seem like a decent move.

Edited by caulfield12

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I’d give higher grades to both the Abreu extension and keuchel signing.  I’d probably give abreu a B- and keuchels a B+.  

Edited by ChiSox1917
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1 hour ago, caulfield12 said:

Hard to be against Mazara and for Collins simultaneously.  Collins will eventually get his opportunity, especially if a starter goes down somewhere and McCann is traded.

In the end, they weren’t ready to commit long-term to Ozuna and Castellanos at their reported asking prices, or risk disrupting the positive clubhouse vibes with Puig.  So Mazara is an easy experiment to end...but still has a payoff.  If we looked at his numbers from an 80’s or 90’s perspective, it would seem like a decent move.

Literally how though? Even without EE Collins is a secondary/tertiary piece filling in at 1B/DH/C to spell Abreu/McCann/Grandal.  Mazara is the starting RF.

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1 hour ago, caulfield12 said:

Hard to be against Mazara and for Collins simultaneously.  Collins will eventually get his opportunity, especially if a starter goes down somewhere and McCann is traded.

In the end, they weren’t ready to commit long-term to Ozuna and Castellanos at their reported asking prices, or risk disrupting the positive clubhouse vibes with Puig.  So Mazara is an easy experiment to end...but still has a payoff.  If we looked at his numbers from an 80’s or 90’s perspective, it would seem like a decent move.

This is how I see it. I have the same opinion as BDB about the EE signing. I liked the rotating catcher DH thing to get Collins AB's but still like the EE signing because I understand it and though pretty damn old we can hope he doesn't fall off dramatically. I put Mazara in the same boat as Collins, which some would call a rebuilding move. But it's really not . All teams even contending teams work young players into the lineup. The problem is we are coming out of the rebuild and trying to get good so we want as many good players as possible but that doesn't mean we abandon all youth and shouldn't search for upside. Those 2 things should be a constant search no matter your position.

Is Robert a rebuild move ?  Yes. Madrigal  ? Kopech, Cease, Lopez ? Yes they all are. But we are all hoping they are big upgrades to the production last year in CF, 2nd base and rotation.. We already know or are pretty sure that if Mazara and EE have their normal years they are a huge upgrade for RF and DH with the potential for a lot more .For Mazara even if you have to squint to see the upsid to hit 40 HR's at least you still see it. To give the move a D you are wearing blinders and you are still pretty likely to get 20 and .800 OPS as long as they don't over expose him to LHP . Fly ball LHP OK, GB LHP not OK.

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How they handle Collin to me is a mystery. Something tells me the organization has no confidence in his skills as a catcher.  The asking price for McCann should be way high.  Oddly this organization which was weak at catcher is now the strongest. 

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Abreu extension is a sneaky A. The money is too much but it sends an amazing message to the young guys and impending free agents. The Sox will take care of those who give them their all.

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3 minutes ago, kitekrazy said:

How they handle Collin to me is a mystery. Something tells me the organization has no confidence in his skills as a catcher.  The asking price for McCann should be way high.  Oddly this organization which was weak at catcher is now the strongest. 

The asking price on McCann can't be way high simply because this is his final year with the Sox and he's had 1 good year in his career and that was last year after being non tendered, He also grades out as pretty poor in pitch framing. Traditional type catcher things like calling a good game and game prep alone don't get you very far. As many will say he's worth more to the Sox.

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1 hour ago, ChiSox1917 said:

I’d give higher grades to both the Abreu extension and keuchel signing.  I’d probably give abreu a B- and keuchels a B+.  

I agree with the above grades and would give Mazara a C+.

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1 hour ago, BackDoorBreach said:

Literally how though? Even without EE Collins is a secondary/tertiary piece filling in at 1B/DH/C to spell Abreu/McCann/Grandal.  Mazara is the starting RF.

Let's take the best case scenario for Collins and Mazara without EE since that's what you preferred.

In order for Collins to play and produce, he likely gets the majority AB at DH against RHP pitching, Maybe you'd argue it would be Grandal but if McCann is starting at C it'll be mostly when there's a LH starter on the mound so Grandal gets the DH AB's against lefties When a RH starter is pitching Grandal is the starting C . So to not overexpose McCann against righties you give Collins a lot of AB's against RH starters at DH  or at least a lot more than McCann. Again best case scenario is a productive Collins hitting HR's, getting on base, being the strong side DH the whole season because Grandal will be catching an awful lot. Probably around 475-500 AB's for Collins the whole year.

Best case scenario for Mazara is he breaks out hit's, 35 HR's .850+ OPS give you adequate D as a strong side platoon and gets 550 AB's. RF last year had a 44 sOPS+ last year, the lowest of any position on the team. A normal replacement level year gives you a 99 sOPS+ from Mazara . A breakout season has the potential for the Mazara trade to be the biggest upgrade the Sox make for 2020 and a normal year still is a big upgrade. So the max difference in AB's is likely around 75 AB's between Collins and Mazara in the best case without EE scenario . So basically one being a "starter" and one being a platoon DH means little.

I think the potential downside with EE is much higher because of his age. He also has been very consistent but mother nature will win eventually and it's coming soon just not too soon we hope. That means you pretty much ignore his age which ignores the downside . You also ignore the age of Mazara which ignores the upside so how can one get a B+ while the other one gets a D ? Upside is better than downside isn't it ?

Edited by CaliSoxFanViaSWside

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If we brought in Jose Villar’s 4.0 fWAR, would that automatically be an A+?

Hahn could certainly have chosen to go that route.

Edited by caulfield12

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Think Mazara has the highest “ surprise ceiling” of the bunch in terms of moves that we potentially look back on and say A+.

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I really like both McCann and Collins but getting Grandal was nice. I'm not a big fan of DH only guys but EE was cheap enough and will be great for a yr. The thing with Grandal an EE is it pushes Collins out but I still can't argue signing both players. Collins will have to wait and earn his place and with the 26 man roster he can watch and learn from 2 pros. I like Abreu a bunch but still think they paid him to much but like Orlando said it sends the young guys a nice message. I wasn't real fond of Mazara but there weren't many choices and he didn't cost us much. He may still turn out to be a really good player for us. I somehow knew we'd end up with Keuchel from the start and think he'll be just fine. Gio is a good cheap starter that'll help us a bunch till we get Kope back an then some. I think relief pitchers are about the hardest to predict but Cishek has a pretty good track record and can help us if he stays on track with his past performances. Our everyday lineup looks killer but pitching might be our weak spot and then again we have 3 or 4 pitchers who have great upside and could breakout and be really good. We got some veteran players that should help our young stars a lot. Overall I'd grade the off season a B+ and I'm ready for some playoff baseball in 2020.

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1 hour ago, caulfield12 said:

If we brought in Jose Villar’s 4.0 fWAR, would that automatically be an A+?

Hahn could certainly have chosen to go that route.

No, because everyone realizes Madrigal is ready for the bigs.  Spending $8+ million on a starting 2B for a year wouldn’t make much sense when you can just call up Madrigal a few weeks into the season.  Hahn made his major acquisitions at every position of need — 2 SP, C, RF, DH, and RP. Someone may question catcher but anyone betting on McCann to repeat last year would be taking on quite the bad bet.

Edited by Moan4Yoan

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6 hours ago, Moan4Yoan said:

No, because everyone realizes Madrigal is ready for the bigs.  Spending $8+ million on a starting 2B for a year wouldn’t make much sense when you can just call up Madrigal a few weeks into the season.  Hahn made his major acquisitions at every position of need — 2 SP, C, RF, DH, and RP. Someone may question catcher but anyone betting on McCann to repeat last year would be taking on quite the bad bet.

Ooops, Jonathan Villar.  To play RF...see 2015/17.

http://www.thebaseballcube.com/players/profile.asp?ID=152841

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i agree with most of what was said. 
 

Abreu extension: C+

Retained what you had and there wasn’t much better out there. Could face degrading skills and needs to be converted to DH soon. 

 

 Grandal signing: B+ 

Very good player and I like what he can bring to the team. However would have preferred to role with Collin and McCann and used his money on pitching. Still was a good move because you got a top 2-4 catcher in the league. 

Mazara trade: C

Has potential especially in our park and addressed a need. Still fairly young. Gave up one of our better OF prospects. Not a terrible trade but is Mazara a impact player or hole filler. That I think is to be determined. 

Keuchel signing: C+

Addreses a pitching hole , if he was the second pitcher I would have been ecstatic would have preferred RYU and rolled the dice because I think he at the moment has the better stuff. The Sox got good talent just not the best available talent. 

 

Gio G signing: B- 

Good pitcher maybe hold a 4-5 hole down. The Sox could have got someone better but they did fill a hole and it’s better than what they had. 

 

EE signing: C+

Brings some depth but also has diminishing skills. Hoping he does not turn into Adam Dunn. He couldn’t hit for anything in the last playoffs. If they rest him every 2nd or 3rd game. I think that would be the smart way of utilizing him. 

Luis Robert extension: A+ 

Best move of offseason , especially if you are confident he’s the guy! 

Cishek signing: B+

Need a bullpen arm and we got a decent one. Was most relieved to get him as everyone decent was just about off the board. 

 

Overall: B

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13 minutes ago, Lightning said:

i agree with most of what was said. 
 

Abreu extension: C+

Retained what you had and there wasn’t much better out there. Could face degrading skills and needs to be converted to DH soon. 

 

 Grandal signing: B+ 

Very good player and I like what he can bring to the team. However would have preferred to role with Collin and McCann and used his money on pitching. Still was a good move because you got a top 2-4 catcher in the league. 

Mazara trade: C

Has potential especially in our park and addressed a need. Still fairly young. Gave up one of our better OF prospects. Not a terrible trade but is Mazara a impact player or hole filler. That I think is to be determined. 

Keuchel signing: C+

Addreses a pitching hole , if he was the second pitcher I would have been ecstatic would have preferred RYU and rolled the dice because I think he at the moment has the better stuff. The Sox got good talent just not the best available talent. 

 

Gio G signing: B- 

Good pitcher maybe hold a 4-5 hole down. The Sox could have got someone better but they did fill a hole and it’s better than what they had. 

 

EE signing: C+

Brings some depth but also has diminishing skills. Hoping he does not turn into Adam Dunn. He couldn’t hit for anything in the last playoffs. If they rest him every 2nd or 3rd game. I think that would be the smart way of utilizing him. 

Luis Robert extension: A+ 

Best move of offseason , especially if you are confident he’s the guy! 

Cishek signing: B+

Need a bullpen arm and we got a decent one. Was most relieved to get him as everyone decent was just about off the board. 

 

Overall: B

Adam Dunn was only 31 when he had one of the worst historical seasons...but he bounced back in 2012.  At Encarnacion’s age, it could just go at any time, or he could have a similar season to Nelson Cruz.  Most likely, something in-between.

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13 hours ago, BackDoorBreach said:

Assuming the Sox are done with major off-season aquisitions I'd like to see grades for each individual move.

Abreu extension: C-

I don't hate Jose Abreu but I thought the QO was exactly what he should have got and ended with.  I'm not a fan of essentially giving him a 3 year deal which will include his age 34 and 35 seasons in the heart of contention.  With Vaughn likely up in 2021, Abreu's extension locks him in as our DH as he ages, instead of leaving some roster flexibility for a more impactful bat.

 

I am not sure why you think Vaughn is an automatic lock to be a star? There is no downside to the Jose extension, the payroll is low enough that if Jose is not good in a year or 2, he can sit the bench.

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7 minutes ago, Cashman said:

I am not sure why you think Vaughn is an automatic lock to be a star? There is no downside to the Jose extension, the payroll is low enough that if Jose is not good in a year or 2, he can sit the bench.

The White Sox have never been the type of organization to just throw away $15 million per season and not face the consequences of said misallocation of resources.

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I know this will be an unpopular opinion, but I do think Abreu’s deal was partially motivated by improving our chances to extend Robert & Moncada.  Given that we already extended the former when it seemed somewhat unlikely, I think we should all bump Abreu a half grade.

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8 minutes ago, Chicago White Sox said:

I know this will be an unpopular opinion, but I do think Abreu’s deal was partially motivated by improving our chances to extend Robert & Moncada.  Given that we already extended the former when it seemed somewhat unlikely, I think we should all bump Abreu a half grade.

Fair enough, as long as we don’t hear the phrase “limited financial flexibility” in 2021/22 or not sign Oscar Colas because we already have Abreu under contract for two more years. 

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19 minutes ago, caulfield12 said:

The White Sox have never been the type of organization to just throw away $15 million per season and not face the consequences of said misallocation of resources.

I don't think it was a bad deal. I just don't think Vaughn is a lock to do anything.

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Just now, caulfield12 said:

Fair enough, as long as we don’t hear the phrase “limited financial flexibility” in 2021/22 or not sign Oscar Colas because we already have Abreu under contract for two more years. 

Abreu only helps us sign Colas.

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6 minutes ago, Chicago White Sox said:

Abreu only helps us sign Colas.

https://risingapple.com/2020/01/06/mets-sign-cuban-oscar-colas/
We’ll see if he actually play RF.  This is the first report I’ve read that mentioned plus range, along with his arm that would be up there with Adolfo’s.  Where they got that info from, other than internet rumors, no idea.

He certainly looks more like a 1B/DH physically, but so does Puig or Avi.

One of the comments really hits the nail on the head.  Nobody has a really thorough scouting report on this kid, just generalities and projections.

Edited by caulfield12

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Let's quit sugarcoating the Abreu deal. It simply was not good. It was a signing orchestrated but Reinsdorf, not Hahn. Unless he miraculously does not decline and it helps us get Colas, it's a lousy signing. 

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