The White Sox out-bid the Brewers and Reds to land Yasmani Grandal earlier this week, signing the second best catcher in the league to the team’s biggest contract ever. The four-year deal worth $73 million topped Jose Abreu’s $68 million contract from 2014, but Grandal may not hold the record for long.
Although the White Sox haven’t been involved in early talks with Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg, they’ve been one of the teams most interested in free agent starter Zack Wheeler. The 29-year-old declined the $17.8 million qualifying offer from the Mets and some think the right-hander could get upwards of a $100 million contract this offseason.
The latest buzz has the White Sox currently being the highest bidders for Wheeler.
Earlier this week, MLB reporter Jon Morosi said the White Sox were in the leading group of teams pursuing Wheeler along with the Twins, Angels and Padres.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal also brought up the Reds as a possible suitor for Wheeler on Friday, but that discussion was more speculative.
Wheeler is comfortably the third best starting pitcher in free agency and it hasn’t been hard for him to build up a market. Jon Heyman was the first to report that Wheeler will talk with the Mets before he accepts a contract, giving New York one last chance to match or give him a better deal.
Besides signing Grandal to a $73 million deal, the White Sox also agreed to a three-year, $50 million extension with Jose Abreu.
Is Rick Hahn about to reel in another top free agent? After getting Grandal, White Sox fans have to feel a lot more confident about the chances of it happening.