Chicago White Sox (67-95)
Additions: RP Joakim Soria, RP Luis Avilan, C Welington Castillo, SP Miguel Gonzalez, SP Hector Santiago (minor-league deal), RP Bruce Rondon (minor-league deal), RP Robbie Ross Jr. (minor-league deal), RP Jeanmar Gomez (minor-league deal), RP Xavier Cedeno (minor-league deal),
Subtractions: SP Derek Holland, SP Mike Pelfrey, RP Al Alburquerque, RP Jake Petricka, RP Zach Putnam, C Geovany Soto, IF Brett Lawrie, IF Alen Hanson IF Jake Peter
Things were relatively quite on the South Side of Chicago this offseason.
That’s because the White Sox are still in the midst of their rebuild that began at the end of 2016 with them trading ace Chris Sale to the Red Sox for Yoan Moncada and three other prospects, then dealing outfielder Adam Eaton to the Nationals for more prospects. General manager Rick Hahn and company have also dealt Jose Quintana, David Robertson, Todd Frazier, Tommy Kahnle, Anthony Swarzak and Melky Cabrera and signed international free agent Luis Robert within the last year during their attempt to rejuvenate their club with great young talent that will look to become a perennial championship contender for the next decade.
As good as their long-term plan is, the White Sox still needed to add some players that could help them the young talent make the transition to the big leagues. They did that by acquiring relievers Joakim Soria and Luis Avilan in a three-way trade with the Dodgers and the Royals in January plus signing catcher Welington Castillo and starter Miguel Gonzalez. Along with filling some holes on the current roster, these veterans will team with stars Jose Abreu and Avisail Garcia in an effort to mentor young players such as Moncada, Tim Anderson, Reynaldo Lopez, Lucas Giolito, Carson Fulmer, Michael Kopech and Eloy Jimenez, with the latter two possibly going to make their MLB debuts this year.
Speaking of Abreu and Garcia, they drew trade interest this offseason, but Hahn and the Sox kept both of them because Hahn felt it was “better served as an organization to have both with us to start the 2018 season” when he addressed the situation during the team’s SoxFest this year. However, that doesn’t mean the Sox will try to shop them near the trade deadline since they are not only both talented players, but are also both controllable through 2019, which can be a big selling point to a contending club. They may also try to deal Soria, Avilan, Gonzalez, James Shields, Danny Farquhar and/or Nate Jones depending on how they perform before July 31.
When it comes to the remaining stars on the free-agent market, the White Sox are not going to make a play for any of them. There have been reports about them being linked to former Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas, but Hahn said in an interview wth MLB Network that they don’t plan on signing the best third baseman on the market and will fill the hot corner using players currently in camp with them.
After all, the White Sox are trusting their rebuilding process.