Update: According to Scott Merkin of MLB.com, Ozzie Guillen said the following:
“Well, if I want one guy out there, I want (Thome). I already talk to Kenny about that.”
It’s a long way from a confirmation of a deal, and Guillen sometimes lacks a filter, but it sure sounds like he’s coming back.
11:51 am: Last we left you on the blog, the Twins were showing real interest in free agent designated hitter Jim Thome, but the White Sox quickly re-entered the picture on Friday night after a source told Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times that there was a “50-50” chance could return to the South Siders.
This weekend just happens to be the annual SoxFest, so reporters have had plenty of access to their favorite quote-machine Ozzie Guillen. Just yesterday Guillen said that he would only bring Thome back as the lefty-part of his DH-by-committee and that a decision would be made either way before he left for Miami on Sunday. Mark Gonzalez of the Chicago Tribune tweeted this morning that Guillen told fans the club has yet to make a decision on Thome, but that he has delayed his flight until Monday.
Is this a sign that Thome is on his way back to Chicago? Not necessarily, but it at least extends the window of the possibility.
Red Sox DH Hanley Ramirez announced via Twitter on Tuesday that he underwent surgery — left shoulder arthroscopy and debridement, per Tim Britton of the Providence Journal. Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports that the operation is considered relatively minor.
Ramirez, 33, has been dealing with shoulder issues for a while, which explains his lackluster regular season numbers. He hit .242/.320/.429 with 23 home runs, 62 RBI, and 58 runs scored in 553 plate appearances. He turned things on in the postseason, though, racking up eight hits in 15 trips to the plate in the ALDS against the Astros.
Ramirez should be good to go heading into spring training. He has one more guaranteed year left on his contract at $22 million and has a vesting option for the 2019 season worth another $22 million.
Pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez also had surgery, Britton reports. The procedure was right knee patellofemoral ligament reconstruction and it was performed by Dr. James Andrews. Rodriguez has a six-month timetable, which Britton estimates will allow him to make his 2018 regular season debut around the All-Star break.
Rodriguez, 24, posted a 4.19 ERA with a 150/50 K/BB ratio in 137 1/3 innings this past season. He’ll be entering his first of four years of arbitration eligibility this offseason.