UPDATE: Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times is defending his initial report and adds that a scout told him that White Sox general manager Ken Williams is hoping to trade Carlos Quentin for a “Carlos Lee-type” return.
The White Sox traded Carlos Lee to the Brewers for Scott Podsednik, Luis Vizcaino and a player to be named later (Travis Hinton) in December of 2004.
Cowley adds that if Williams can’t find a satisfactory deal involving Lee, he would explore moving Mark Teahen or Dayan Viciedo, but knows that the return wouldn’t be as substantial.
12:49 PM: In an additional Tweet, van Dyck quotes Williams as saying that he won’t move a piece of his everyday lineup for relief pitching. Just because Williams denies it doesn’t mean it won’t happen — he could be holding out for a specific player — but there you go.
11:29 AM: White Sox general manager Ken Williams told Dave van Dyck of the Chicago Tribune that any trade rumors involving Carlos Quentin “are not true.”
Friday, 7:41 PM: According to Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times, the White Sox are shopping Carlos Quentin for bullpen help, but “are asking a lot so far.”
Just last month at the GM Meetings, a White Sox source told Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago that the club wasn’t shopping Quentin, but that was, well, last month. The club may be more willing to part with him now that they have successfully secured Paul Konerko and Adam Dunn for the middle of their lineup.
Quentin, 28, batted .243/.342/.479 with 26 homers, 87 RBI and an 821 OPS this past season, but he has struggled to stay healthy throughout his career. He made $3.2 million in 2010 and figures to earn somewhere around $5 million through the arbitration process this winter.
Quentin still has plenty of value since he offers some thump from the right side of the plate, but concerns about his durability will likely have an impact on the quality of the players the White Sox would receive in return.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that Indians manager Terry Francona has set his starting rotation for the first three games of the World Series against the Cubs. Corey Kluber will start Game One, followed by Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin for Games Two and Three, respectively.
Kluber, the ace of the staff, has had a terrific postseason. He’s made three starts with a 0.98 ERA and a 20/7 K/BB ratio in 18 1/3 innings. The Indians won two of his starts — Game Two of the ALDS and Game 1 of the ALCS.
Bauer was unable to make it out of the first inning of his ALCS Game 3 start against the Blue Jays after the stitches on his pinky opened up and caused blood to pour out. He suffered the injury repairing one of his drones, which he builds as a hobby. Bauer insists he’ll be good to go in Game Two, though he also insisted that the injury wouldn’t be an impediment against the Jays.
Tomlin has made two solid starts for the Indians, allowing a total of three runs over 10 2/3 innings. The Indians won both games he started, Game 3 of the ALDS and Game 2 of the ALCS. MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian notes that if Bauer can’t go in Game Two, Tomlin will be moved up to start in his place.
It isn’t difficult to see the fingerprints left by Cubs’ president Tom Ricketts and general manager Theo Epstein on the club’s remarkable 2016 season. In a piece for FOXSports.com, former Yankee Alex Rodriguez highlighted the duo’s effectiveness in liberating the Cubs from a five-year losing streak and six-year postseason drought, citing both the unrelenting work ethic and passion that Ricketts and Epstein brought to the club as major factors in their success.
Rodriguez’s first brush with sabermetric savant and all-around baseball wizard Theo Epstein came in 2003, when the then- 27-year-old All-Star was eyeing a deal with the Red Sox. The Major League Baseball Players Association eventually nixed the trade, and the Rangers’ young shortstop was sent to the Yankees shortly thereafter, but not before Rodriguez glimpsed the inner workings of Epstein’s mind.
What I remember best about that time was watching Theo furiously scribbling out the Red Sox lineup for the upcoming season on a room-service napkin. That’s when I saw Theo’s baseball mind at work. I saw he had a passion for the game, a depth of knowledge, and a thirst to be great. Theo’s passion was contagious. We were three 20-somethings convinced we were about to turn baseball upside down together. Though I never got a chance to work with Theo, I knew then that he was going to be a force.
A-Rod also referenced Ricketts’ thorough approach to rebuilding the organization. Ricketts, who purchased the franchise for $875 million in 2009, first made it his mission to transform Wrigley Field into a comfortable and enticing playing environment, then targeted top-tier management to run the show behind the scenes. With Ricketts fully backing Epstein’s transformative approaches — including an overhaul of the Cubs’ farm system, investments in international player development, and a comprehensive understanding and practical application of sabermetric advances — the Cubs’ path to a 97-win season in 2015 seemed a natural consequence of the pair’s hard work.
This year, the attention has been even more intensely focused on the Cubs’ elusive third World Series title. Rodriguez, however, believes that winning a championship is secondary to the strides Ricketts and Epstein have taken with the club.
Together, Ricketts and Epstein have built one of the greatest franchises in baseball and transformed 1060 W. Addison St. It’s a task that no one could quite get right for a hundred years. While four more wins would put a giant exclamation point on five years of focused work and determination, I won’t worry if this team doesn’t win the World Series in the next nine days.