The White Sox have a clear list of needs to address to this offseason. Starting pitching, left-handed batter/DH and a right fielder. GM Rick Hahn has publicly stated that he wants to add at least one starting pitcher and right now the White Sox remain among the favorites to sign Zack Wheeler.
You can also see the projected deals for the top free agent starters below.
Pitching has to be at the top of Hahn’s priority list this offseason, but there’s no doubt the White Sox have a giant hole to fill on their roster in right field.
The White Sox are pretty much set with Eloy Jimenez and Luis Robert in left and center, but there’s no one really knocking down the door in the minors to win a job next to them in the outfield. Heading into the 2020 season, expectations are to win. Time to spend money. (A good start with Grandal)
Of course, there are possible trades the White Sox can make to get a right fielder, but we’re going to focus on free agency. It’s not that complicated. Find a guy you like and make an offer he can’t refuse.
MLB Trade Rumors Prediction: 3 years, $45 million
Back in October, before free agency began there was this hilarious report that Marcell Ozuna’s asking price would be seven years for $160 million.
I too want to get $160 million, but just like Ozuna’s rumored asking price, I’m not getting it either.
Whether it’s Ozuna or Nick Castellanos, the top-two right field free agents, Hahn knows that if the signs one of them it’s because of the offense, knowing that it’s going to have to make up for the defense.
MLB Trade Rumors Prediction: 4 years, $58 million
Castellanos also projects to get a four-year deal, but his average annual salary is slightly below the estimates for Ozuna. The White Sox have been linked to Castellanos and Ozuna early on in free agency.
MLB Trade Rumors Prediction: 1 year, $8 million
Oof, tough prediction from MLBTR. While Puig hasn’t reached the success from his rookie season with the Dodgers he’s still been a decent hitter and has an amazing arm. Definitely going over on the one-year, $8 million prediction.
MLB Trade Rumors Prediction: 2 years, $12 million
After his ridiculous 2017 season with the White Sox, Avisail Garcia came crashing back to Earth and was let go by Chicago after 2018. The Rays signed him and Garcia had a nice season, posting a .796 OPS with 20 home runs and a .282 batting average. He still doesn’t walk much and well the White Sox have already lived through the Avi experience.
Not ranked in MLBTR’s top-50 free agents list
The Japanese free agent has to go through the posting system and teams have until Dec. 19, to sign him to a contract. He’s a big slugger over in Japan, but there are obviously concerns about how that will translate against MLB pitching. His OPS in 2019 in Japan was .899, but that comes with him striking out more than average and walking at about an average rate in the NBP.
Oh and his defense isn’t good either, considered more of a DH. The Athletic wrote about him on Thursday and a two or three year deal between $5-6 million per season was given as an estimate. Don’t think he’d be worth the risk for the White Sox.
Not ranked among the top-50 free agents on FanGraphs’ list
MLB Trade Rumors Prediction: 1 years, $6 million
A left-handed hitter, who plays right field and has averaged a walk rate above 10% in the last four seasons. Calhoun obviously wouldn’t be a flashy signing, but he’ll be inexpensive and would give the White Sox a player who not only has some pop (33 HRs in 2019) but gets on base via walks.
So, who do you want White Sox fans? Have to imagine the expectations have been raised after the Grandal signing.