White Sox aggressiveness this offseason has been good as they’re targeting good fits for their rebuild. They should avoid players that won’t be a good fit.
The Chicago White Sox preparation for this offseason has been good. After beginning their rebuild following the conclusion of the 2016 season, the Sox did a great job of limiting their long-term payroll commitments going into 2019.
With the Sox aggressiveness in targeting players that would fit in their plans of becoming contenders, they must avoid making decisions that wouldn’t help their long-term goals. There are some free agents that are reportedly looking for long-term deals but their age could prevent that from happening.
Free agent starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel would make a good addition to the Sox starting rotation. However, he’s reportedly seeking a five-year contract according to Jon Morosi of MLB.com. Keuchel is likely not to get a five-year contract from any team this offseason as he will turn 31 on Tuesday. Keuchel did win a Cy Young Award with the Houston Astros in 2015, but he hasn’t come close to replicating the same numbers from that year.
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The Sox have a lot of pitching depth in the minors and having Keuchel on the team more than two years wouldn’t be ideal. Keuchel would make better sense on a two-year deal with an option for a third year. If Keuchel remains persistent on signing a five-year contract, the Sox should look elsewhere for starting pitching help.
Another player that is reportedly looking for a long-term contract is A.J. Pollock. The center fielder has put up good numbers when healthy, but he’s had a problem remaining injury-free over the past few seasons. According to Bob Nightengale, Pollock is looking for an $80 million contract similar to deals signed by Dexter Fowler and Lorenzo Cain.
Pollock hasn’t appeared in more than 120 games since his All-Star 2015 season. The Sox do need help in center field, but they should likely avoid signing Pollock to a long-term contract. Pollock hasn’t shown he can remain healthy consistently and signing him to a contract longer than two years won’t work for the Sox future plans.
Lastly, another player that would fit for the Sox is Yasmani Grandal. But recent reports indicate that the free agent catcher turned down a four-year $60 million contract from the New York Mets. Similar to Keuchel and Pollock, Grandal wouldn’t make sense on a long-term contract with the Sox.
Grandal is 30 and if signed, he would potentially block either Zack Collins or Seby Zavala from making their major league debut with the Sox. The Sox don’t have to sign Keuchel, Pollock or Grandal this offseason as there are other players available that can help the franchise fill their voids.