With four contract options to deliberate on for the 2013 offseason, the White Sox equal the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays for the most options in baseball. Unlike the Yankees and Rays, however, the Chi Sox have seemingly already decided the fate three of their four players:
- SP Jake Peavy has a $22 million option and a $4 million buyout
- 3B Kevin Youkilis has a $13 million option and a $1 million buyout
- RP Brett Myers has a $10 million vesting option and a $3 million buyout
- SP Gavin Floyd has a $9.5 million option and an unknown buyout
Peavy, 31, has put together the comeback year that the White Sox faithful were hoping for following an injury-plagued 2010-2011. In thirty starts on the season, Peavy has amassed a 3.40 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 8.0 K/9 in just over two hundred innings. Despite this success, the White Sox have already made it known that they do not plan to pick up the right-hander’s option for next season.
Similarly, the Sox have also stated their intent to buyout Kevin Youkilis’ option. The 33-year-old mid-season acquisition has been a massive offensive boost at third base for the club—hitting .228/.348/.436 with fifteen home runs in seventy-two games—but Sox apparently want to look at other, cheaper hot corner options for 2013.
Myers, 32, came to Chicago in July needing to finish just sixteen of the team’s final sixty-eight games for his $10 million option to vest. Having finished just eleven games with ten very important games remaining, it seems unlikely that Myers’ option will activate and pretty clear that the White Sox do not want it to. The veteran right-hander has been successful in his short stint with the club—putting up a 3.33 ERA in twenty-seven innings—but $10 million is a heavy price to pay for any reliever.
Floyd, 29, is the only option player the White Sox have yet to decide on. With a $9.5 million option and unknown (possibly non-existent?) buyout, Floyd is also the cheapest of the four to keep. An increased walk rate this year has seen the right-hander put together his worst season since 2007, though much of that may be attributed to his recent elbow troubles. Floyd has averaged thirty starts a year and amassed a 4.16 ERA over the past five seasons, and is a solid middle-of-the-rotation arm if the White Sox feel they need him.