Black Jack

Alex Rios as a White Sox player

   I'm not sure about the naysayers in the Alex Rios waiver claim. 
  Obviously $10 million is a hefty yearly sum and the expectations will be high, but he is an upgrade at every part of the game from any centerfielder the White Sox have sent out there.  A tip of the hat to Scotty Pods for revamping the lineup into a bit of a resurgence, but I'll take Gordan Beckham's bat as being the biggest push the Sox have had to that effect.

  This move to me was a good risk because I personally think that Rios hasn't completely hit his ceiling yet. Geez, where did all this money magically come from?


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41 Comments

Noneck said:

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Jack,
You think Rios will be the defensive center fielder the Sox are looking for? How is his arm? What about his strikeouts and not many walks? You think he can be a 30/30 guy?

Regarding finding the money. I hear most the moth bitten currency used for this deal is dated 1995 with "Not for BJ Mc" written on it.

Jack McDowell said:

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He'll be the guy. And yes I think he'll be a 30 / 30 guy. Ozzie will run him a lot more than he has in the past and he'll continue to hit for power.

lesnessman said:

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I love the move. Nobody can deny that Rios is a huge defensive upgrade over what the Sox have had in center for years.
The log-jam of players will be relieved next year when the Sox dump one of their four designated hitters [(1) Thome (2) Konerko (3) Quentin (4) Dye] and Pods.

bkelly said:

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I agree, great move. I imagine this means Thome and Pods are out (I think that was a foregone conclusion anyway). Perhaps Dye is bought out, but then there's still the problem of only having two major league outfielders on the roster.

An outfield of TCQ, Rios, and Dye might looks very nice at the dish next year.

part-time pariah said:

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this move is a nice gesture. my gf and i are actually going out to see the sox now next week to help with the income, lol.

seriously though, rios is a complete stud, and a 5+ WAR player when he's 'good'. this dude is gonna mash at the cell, no doubt about it. FINALLY, some legitimacy in CF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

podsednik can sit the rest of the year as far as i'm concerned.

detroit and minnesota have got to be shaking their heads at this one. september is looking like it's gonna be a really fun month kiddies!

swinner said:

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I like this move and I hope Rios brings a "killer mentality" with him when he arrives. This team won't make the playoffs if they only manage to get up for the games with the big boys.

Jack McDowell said:

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Not sure that Rios is the personality you're looking for to change the demeanor of the team. Good starting pitching always adds fire to a team however!

bkelly said:

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Are you trying to say you're looking to make a comeback?

part-time pariah said:

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how fucking cool would that be? LOL.

bkelly said:

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It would be awesome. But then Kenny would have to bring Ventura back to be the designated mound charger next time a Sox player is plunked.

part-time pariah said:

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NICE. that moment has been etched into my brain, hehe. stupid nolan ryan...

PawsOut said:

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You mean like Jake Peavy???

RAE said:

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I know we don't pinch-hit a whole lot, but w/ Dye, CQ, or Rios coming off the bench, that position seems much more dangerous now than Wise & Nix. Especially in these days of specialty relievers.

Rick S said:

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This is KW making up for his quiet off-season. After dealing one of his best prospects in Poreda in the Peavy deal, he had to be happy he got a guy of Rios' calibre for the price of his contract. It's a lot of money and the type of contract that KW usually avoids, but Rios' age likely has something to do with taking the gamble. That, and the pourous defense that keeps killing the Sox day in and day out. Rios is a better than average CF and a huge upgrade over Pods. Pods is much better thought of as a 4th OF. If he's willing to accept that role, then I hope Pods stays for another year or two. I think the Sox will pick up Dye (Though first I hope he breaks out of his recent funk.) Next year Dye wouldl be doing some DH'ing no doubt, but we should still log him in for 90-110 games in right. Thome is likely the odd man out in this deal. Thome looks as though he can be a legitimate full-time DH somewhere for one or two more years to come. I'd love to see him get #600 in a Sox uni, but it's probably going to happen elsewhere. Maybe back in Cleveland where they booed him?

At any rate, Rios is the kind of player who can win a game for you and is a nice piece to have down the road. Dye and Thome shouldn't worry about next year and focus on seeing how far we can go this year. For Thome it may well be his last chance at the post-season.

Wise can start packing his bags. He's always have "the catch".

rustysurf83 said:

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My only question is why is DeWayne Wise still on the roster? Does he have any value whatsover now? I would just DFA him. If he doesn't like it he can demand a trade...maybe we can get a bag of balls or some pine tar from some dumbass GM.

Jimmymac120912 said:

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Best question you ever asked was where did all this money come from? Hopefully all this money will get them a 3B next year. Because I am dont watching Chris Getz trying to get to balls laterally. He has range like Mark Bellhorn. With acquistion of Rios, next year they should have an above average if not great middle infield with Alexi playing 2B and Beckham playing SS.

RichN said:

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The money is not coming from anywhere, because there will be no "extra" money needed. These 2 deals will result in a wash so far as total payroll for next year. Dotel ($6 million) will be gone for sure--way too much for a middle inning guy. Either Dye or Thome will also be gone. Ideally, both guys will be traded (rather than allowed to walk) for prospects to replenish the farm system that had been depleted by prior trades.

PawsOut said:

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They can't trade Thome or Dye except via waivers and that move makes no sense if they plan on winning a division this season. Also, if they both do walk this offseason, it will hardly be for nothing as they would both more than likely be type A free agents. 2 first round draft picks are about the best you could expect in return for these guys right now anyways, so it makes perfect sense to hang on to them and go after another division title.

Jack McDowell said:

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7 weeks ago, I pushed for Dye and Dotel to be traded to stock up the minor league system. Now it seems everyone assumes these moves will be made to make payroll space. Dye is in an option year and the Sox will have no "rights" to trade him in the off-season. They should have acted when his value was at its highest, for the deadline.

PawsOut said:

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I absolutely love the Rios acquisition. It gives the Sox a true center fielder for the first time since Rowand. And I couldn't agree with BJ more about Rios being far superior (plus having a higher ceiling) than anyone they've paraded out there since. Rios also allows Jordan Danks and Jarred Mitchell time to develop their games without being thrown into the fire prematurely and expected to fill the gaping hole in CF.

I truly believe that the Sox will let both Thome and Dye leave. I'd like to see them work out a deal with JD, but I doubt he would take a pay cut and currently 12 million dollars is quite a bit for a RF that should be a DH.

And as far as the money? It comes from not signing overpriced Free agents to ludicrous contracts. So now players on the opposite end of their production spectrum actually have expiring contracts as opposed to 6 more years at 18 million (Cough. Soriano. Cough)

Jack McDowell said:

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Wait , wait, wait. You say there is enough money because the Sox haven't signed free agents to ludicrous contracts????? How do you answer to the fact that the Sox just picked up Peavy with a bunch of top dollar years left on a contract...while he was on the DL. And we just got a guy with a bunch of years left who JUST SIGNED A FREE AGENT DEAL LAST YEAR AND WAS IMMEDIATELY PUT ON WAIVERS THE FOLLOWING YEAR. Are you kidding me? The Sox just picked up 2 crazy free agent deals, one that the team that originally made the deal thought they screwed up on, and another with a guy on the DL. Wow, I really feel you are off base here.

RichN said:

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I meant the Thome and Dye departures as off-season moves. I agree we need them for this year's playoff push. Also, payroll for subsequent years will need to be unloaded to pay for Peavy and Rios; look for Konerko, Pierzynski, and Jenks to be gone. Reinsdorf will not greatly expand the payroll, especially now that he will have a 3rd team (hockey) to finance.

part-time pariah said:

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we have enough money to be competitive next year, you shouldn't worry there. you're always going to see moronic contracts handed out, it's the way baseball is.

we'll be fine in 2010, and i have no doubt we'll be a better team on top of it...

Jack McDowell said:

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The joke you're missing is the fact the Sox cried "poor" earlier in the year and complained about attendance.

part-time pariah said:

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and that still has me scratching my head...

were they just bullshitting for some odd reason? cuz the moves made do not indicate we're hurting financially. i posted on another board that someone should check jerry's temperature because it's very uncharacteristic of them to toss the moolah around like that.

Jack McDowell said:

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Of course they're bullshitting!!! The value of a team is what really matters, not the yearly income! They cook the books in SOOO many ways to show whatever they want to tax wise each year, but the value of every franchise grows every year. When has there ever been a Major League franchise up for sale lacking suitors to buy it? It's actually an exclusive club where they only let certain people/ownership groups in. Let's see, George Brett has a valid ownership group that is not approved to buy the Royals, yet Jeff Moorad, an agent in a past life, can buy the Padres. Shows you what a joke most agents are when it comes to BS under the table shady dealings. Oh yeah, and look who also works for the White Sox...former mega-agent Dennis Gilbert. The only reason I'm pissed about it is because I had both of them as my agents for my first two big league years.

Jack McDowell said:

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Don't confuse ownership with actual money in that person's pocket. If I remember correctly, Reinsdorf was a small percentage owner of the White Sox...ie less than 5%. This isn't HIS money, but a group of investors. He is just acting as CEO. Cross ownership will not effect ANYTHING.

UGODOG said:

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WS will be forsale in 2010. Reinsdorf is making the right economic moves.. He wants to stay in Pheonix he doesn't need the MLB headaches.

Jack McDowell said:

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Oh yeah, hockey is flourishing. No headaches there! FYI, when a team goes up for sale, they sell the big contracts to have as little excess BS from past ownership.

Noneck said:

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Jack,

Why do you think they are spending money now? You think they think that spending money now will increase or at least keep the season tic base from this year? Why are they changing their philosophy on long term contracts?

RichN said:

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The fact that Reinsdorf is playing with somebody else's money, makes it even more likely that he won't be reckless with the payroll. As a CEO he needs to, among other things, protect the Return on Investment of his fellow stakeholders. With attendance ranked only 16th out of 30 teams, and mediocre TV and radio revenues, the Sox payroll (ranked 10th in the majors) will not get significantly higher than it is now. That's why I feel the Peavy and Rios contracts will need to be offset by salary dumps elsewhere.

bkelly said:

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You make it sound like Jerry and Kenny haven't thought the mother through and are making these trades and decisions on a lark. I think it's more than fair to say that they have a reasonable expectation of revenues, and know exactly where they need to be.

sandiegosoxfan said:

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this is what i would do. keep jd rios and carlos and pods as the 4th. get rid of wiese. keep thome let colon and contreas go if garcia can prove he can pitch without the 6th inning disaster keep him. as for dotel is to inconsistant to be paid what he is makeing. starting rotation is going to be solid, and someone needs to slap alexie and stop his daydreaming to many errors.

bkelly said:

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Why keep Thome? To resign him, they would either have to offer him an extension now, or offer him arbitration in the off-season (I believe). He would get at a minimum of $10.5MM based on the minimums. I don't think a 39 year old (next season) Thome is worth that much, since he doesn't play everyday anymore, and hardly starts (or so it seems) against lefties. That's a lot of money to pay a platoon DH.

I agree with keeping Dy,e Rios, TCQ, and Pods. Dotel makes too much money as a set-up man. It sure seems like Colon is not going to be welcomed back next year. Does Contreras even have enough in his tank to go more than three or four innings anymore? Torres can be suitable 5th starter next year, or better yet, scree the 5 man and drop to a four man rotation. Blackjack would love it!

RichN said:

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I do think that they thought these deals through. The upcoming salary dump is part of their plan. Overall, I think (barring injuries)these are good deals--after the dust settles, the Sox will be younger and better at roughly the same payroll.

bkelly said:

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I agree. It would be great to see a young, speedy team come in and replace some of the slower than molasses station to station players (Thome, I'm looking right at you)

Gene-Paul Kelly said:

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Guys,
YES. There HAS been a lot of payroll committed to two guys in the last 2 weeks. BUT, there's a LOT of payroll flexibility coming in the next 2 seasons. Dye, Thome, Konerko, Dotel, Contreras wil all be off the books after 2010, even when you factor in option years. Buehrle is still a reasonable contract, and he'll be done by 2011(unless extended). Bacon, Ramirez, Floyd, Danks, and others are young and still relatively cost controlled.
Williams is playing a dangeous game, but it has enormous upside. If this team can go deep in the postseason, you have a solid core for a few years.

2010-2011 projected rotation: Beuhrle, Peavy, Danks, Floyd.
I'll take my chances with that.

Jack McDowell said:

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What I was referring to was the claim by Sox management about the lack of attendance and therefore not having the money earlier in the season. Every team has as much money as they want/need to win...period. it's all about growing the value of your team. Some owners believe winning does that, some don't.

Jack McDowell said:

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That is very true and truly only scratches the surface of income for these teams. How about the fact that the MLB network channel had over 50 million subscriptions prior to being on the air. Those numbers will grow exponentially as they get more established because they are putting out a far more quality product than baseball tonight on ESPN.

Noneck said:

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I totally agree with you. Its a bonanza for all teams these days. And then we here in Chicago have to listen about the type of team put on the field depends on the # of seats sold. And how appreciative the fans should be for obtaining some quality players. All crap when a team is making more than 35m before putting the key in door.

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