White Sox aggressiveness this offseason in targeting top two free agents should change perception most fans have of the team’s chairman.
White Sox fans have either heard or read throughout this offseason that the franchise hasn’t signed a player to a contract of more than $68 million. The perception most fans have of Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf is that he won’t pay for premium talent.
Whether that is true or not, many Sox fans have typically perceived Reinsdorf as cheap. While completely overlooking the fact the Sox signed Albert Belle to a then-record contract and their payroll was in the top ten of MLB as recently as 2010 and 2011. Reinsdorf’s perception from some fans is unjustified.
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Entering this offseason, many Sox fans wanted the front office to drastically improve the ballclub. With not many payroll commitments for 2019, the Sox have a golden opportunity to build a much better team entering next season.
On Thursday, it was reported the Sox had submitted an offer to free agent superstar Manny Machado. At 26, Machado could very well sign a lengthy and lucrative contract in the range of $200-$300 million. If Reinsdorf is cheap, he certainly wouldn’t sign off on submitting an offer to a player for a franchise record-breaking contract.
Although the Sox have reportedly submitted an offer to Machado, he could still sign with the New York Yankees or Philadelphia Phillies. However, Reinsdorf has shown a willingness to improve the Sox through targeting top free agents this offseason. Maybe the Sox do miss out on signing Machado. But Sox fans can no longer blame Reinsdorf for being cheap.
The Sox ability to prepare for this very offseason should be applauded by fans. Reinsdorf has endured some very ugly seasons as the Sox chairman recently. The on-field product has been poor and so has attendance at Guaranteed Rate Field. At 82 and with seven total championships as owner of the Sox and the Bulls, Reinsdorf appears to be targeting another World Series for his baseball team.