Side note: Sorry for the long delay between posts I have been out of town for the past ten days for some well deserved R&R. Now let's get back to sports talk.
The White Sox will most likely have a hole to fill at third base this off-season. The Yankees may be willing to help fill that vacancy after a sweep out of the ALCS by the Detroit Tigers in which their All Star third baseman, Alex Rodriguez had an abysmal postseason with a batting average of .120 with no home runs or RBIs and pinch hit for and scratched from the lineup three times. Rodriguez is 37 and will be 38 by the middle of the 2013 season. His albatross of a Yankees' contract has him making $114 million dollars for the next five seasons, $28 million of it he will make in 2013. There has been rumblings and rumors aplenty that A-Rod can be had in the off-season and the Yankees are open to the idea. If the rumors are true then the White Sox should be in the conversation as possible landing spots for the aging third baseman. Here are a few reasons why A-Rod in a White Sox uniform makes sense if A-Rod waives his no trade clause.
THE YANKEES WILL EAT THE MAJORITY OF THE CONTRACT
The fact that most teams will scoff at any deal where the Yankees aren't eating the majority of his contract means that if the Yankees are serious about dumping A-Rod they will have to take the brunt of the remaining $114 million dollar contract as part of any deal. While the White Sox will have money to spend with the likes of Kevin Youkilis, Jake Peavy and A.J. Pierzynski all expected to walk, a deal in which they could fill a gap at third base, get A-Rod and his remaining five year contract, AND have the majority of that five year contract paid off by the Yankees in exchange for some prospects or a package of players seems like a virtual win-win for the White Sox.
THE RICK HAHN ERA STARTS WITH A BANG
With Kenny Williams getting promoted to team president and Kenny's highly touted successor Rick Hahn taking over at general manager it means the new GM should want to put his own personal stamp on the team. The Bears' new GM Phil Emery acquired Brandon Marshall as his first big move and it would make sense for Hahn to want to have a big move of his own to start his reign. Alex Rodriguez would make sense with not only filling a hole on the roster but makes sense especially with third base depth in free agency leaving a lot to be desired. (Scott Rolen, anyone?) With that said, Hahn is considered a much less panic prone person compared to Williams and believes in building within instead of relying on free agency. Hahn may distance himself from Williams' approach of making a "big move" on a regular basis and opt to replenish the farm instead.
THE SOX LINEUP BECOMES THAT MUCH MORE EXPLOSIVE
Imagine an everyday lineup that included Paul Konerko, Adam Dunn, Alex Rios, and Alex Rodriguez. Talk about a tough lineup to pitch around. If each were to stay hot for an extended period of time it would provide headaches for opposing managers and pitching staffs as well as provide fireworks not only offensively but literally with as many home runs they could rack up in a home run friendly ballpark. Rodriguez is a career .300 hitter and has 647 career home runs and despite his rising age, he can still swing a bat and get on base. He would thrive at U.S. Cellular Field.
A-ROD GIVES THE WHITE SOX MORE AMMO AGAINST THE TIGERS
The White Sox were in first place for the majority of the 2012 season and fell apart late to give their up and down rivals, the Detroit Tigers, not only a division pennant but the American League representative in the World Series. During the regular season the White Sox went 6-13 against the Tigers and that record ended up being the demise of the White Sox during the most crucial games of the season. The inability to beat Detroit when it mattered most kept the Tigers alive in the division a lot longer than it should have and inevitably gave the Tigers the edge and the division. While A-Rod's numbers against Detroit were unspectacular in the ALCS it shouldn't be assumed that Rodriguez being added to the White Sox lineup wouldn't benefit the White Sox in head to head match-ups against their rivals next season. The division should be ripe for the taking once again next season and it should remain a two team race between Chicago and Detroit. The White Sox must improve in head to head match-ups against the Tigers and Alex Rodriguez would certainly help provide some much needed offense against a formidable Tigers rotation.
IT SHOULD HELP HOME GAME ATTENDANCE
The White Sox need help selling tickets. They were in first place the majority of 2012 until the very end of the season and still drew under two million fans to U.S. Cellular Field. They ranked 24th in league attendance behind such teams as the Miami Marlins, Colorado Rockies, Minnesota Twins, Arizona Diamondbacks, Toronto Blue Jays, and San Diego Padres. The Sox slashed ticket prices for the 2013 season and need to create some interest to get fans coming through the gates. Alex Rodriguez is still a big name and a big draw whether you love him or hate him. He is the only active player who has a realistic chance of breaking the all time home run record (he's 115 behind Barry Bonds) and should easily pass Willie Mays on the all time list in the 2013 season (he needs only 14). While the White Sox may not want to spend big in the off-season they have to see the writing on the wall for fan attendance and may see value in making a splash for not only on field production but also fan interest and marketing opportunities.
The chance of A-Rod suiting up for the White Sox next season may be slim considering he has to waive a full no trade clause for the conversation to even be considered but it is worth thinking about for an organization who needs to solve their confounding attendance issues as well as a major hole on the lineup card. Should A-Rod waive that no trade clause, don't be surprised to hear the White Sox' name being attached to talks involving the All Star third baseman.
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