Jun 17, 2014; Bronx, NY, USA; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Sergio Santos (21) pitches during the eighth inning against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. New York Yankees won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
This week, the Chicago White Sox bolstered their bullpen by signing free agent LHP Zach Duke to a 3 year, $15M contract. While the White Sox have made many statements about improving their pitching staff, here is a question for everyone to think about.
What comes next?
Reliever Andrew Miller would be a great signing, however if they were to sign him it would come at a ridiculous price. I have said before that if Miller were to sign with the White Sox, it would be at too high of a price. Therefore, it is best for the team to spread out their money over multiple relievers, if they choose to do so.
Here is an interesting name I have seen linked to the White Sox: Sergio Santos.
Santos has had injury issues during his time in Toronto, however I would not be opposed to the idea of bringing him back to Chicago on a minor league deal. Santos was excellent with the Sox, but injuries held him back in Toronto. If pitching coach Don Cooper can work with Santos, to teach him how to adapt to his velocity loss, he might be a good fit.
While the pitching staff is the main issue on the South Side, a left-handed bat needs to be acquired as well.
Adam LaRoche has been mentioned, who would probably become a designated hitter and be a huge upgrade over Adam Dunn. LaRoche is also an excellent first baseman as well, though he is aging and would be better served splitting time with Abreu.
The name that keeps getting thrown out in trade rumors the most is current all-star shortstop Alexei Ramirez.
I am not sure if it is wise to move Ramirez without getting a massive haul in return. Due to his contract status and age he may be able to demand one. Would he be able to bring back an overall Top-20 prospect? Probably not, but he could bring back several ready or near ready MLB players.
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Considering the offseason is very young, expect there to be many more moves. The White Sox seem to want to get back on their feet quickly, and the only way to do so is to acquire legit MLB players.
This past season was a year to rebuild, and Executive Vice President Ken Williams has even stated that he the Sox are done with rebuilding.
The Winter Meetings should be entertaining as always, but expect the Sox to be more aggressive than in years past.
Will the Sox contend in 2015? Who knows, but expect them to get back into the race sooner rather than later.