The White Sox have been in this weird mid-world of “win now” and “not good enough” for, well, basically ever. Year-in, year-out they seem to add a high profile bat or arm or two that, at the time of the signing or trade, is portrayed as the final piece of a puzzle. Each year, however, the Sox seem mired in the same general mediocrity. It has to be frustrating to Sox fans.
That frustration may not be around much longer. It will be replaced by a different brand of frustration. The frustration of seeing a team’s biggest stars being dealt. Possibly several of them in the same offseason.
That’s certainly the implication White Sox GM Rick Hahn gave at the general managers meetings. Via CSNChicago.com, we learn that the time of “half measures” and “stopgaps” is over:
“We’ve always been focused on putting ourselves in the best position to win,” Hahn said. “At the same time, I think we’re veering away from the standpoint of looking for stopgaps. A lot of what we did in the last few years had been trying to enhance the short-term potential of the club to put ourselves in a position to win immediately. I feel the approach at this point is focusing on longer-term benefits. It doesn’t mean we won’t necessarily be in a good position in 2017. It means that our targets and whatever we’re hoping to accomplish have a little more longer-term fits in nature.”
That’s a polite, leverag-preserving way of saying “everything must go.” With “everything” likely including Chris Sale, Jose Quintana, Jose Abreu, Todd Frazier, Adam Eaton, and Melky Cabrera. Maybe even more. All of those players would have value on a thin free agent market and all of them could fetch prospects which could help replenish a farm system which, last spring, was ranked in the bottom ten in baseball.
Get ready for a turbulent offseason, White Sox fans. Your team is likely to look way different come spring training.