Last year at the trade deadline, Kenny Williams traded Daniel Hudson for Edwin Jackson. In my opinion, it has to be one of the worst moves in his tenure (only Alex Rios and Jake Peavy rank ahead of this move). Management got a taste of the bad trade in the second half of last season when he finished the year going 7-1 with a 1.69 ERA. Jackson on the other hand went 4-2 with a 3.24 ERA. Not bad numbers, but definately worse than Hudson's numbers.
Jackson's role this year was to eat innings and save the bullpen because of Jake Peavy's inability to go deep into games. Although his numbers weren't spectacular (7-7, 3.92 ERA), we did his job and ate up innings (121.1). Recent reports said that Jerry Reinsdork wanted to shed money off the payroll for flat-lining club and thats why Teahen and Jackson were traded. In that respect the White Sox got the good end of the deal because they shed $9.5 million from the payroll through 2012. They got rid of a 3rd baseman that underachieved and became an expensive/unused bench warmer in Mark Teahen while also shedding Jackson's albatross contract; but is that the way to win the division?
The Sox gained help for the bullpen (especially for Jesse Crain) in Jason Frasor. Frasor doesn't have bad numbers going 2-1 in 44 games for the Jays this season, but that isn't much of a gain considering the loss of an inning eater in Jackson.
The Sox claim that they are "All in", but they just traded someone who was going to help offset the inconsistent health of "ace" Jake Peavy. Peavy can't get passed the sixth inning in any game which puts pressure on the bullpen to be used more in his starts. Without Jackson, the six man rotation is gone meaning that Peavy starts more often and that bullpen gets overworked more. This isn't the white flag trade of 1998, but it does put an onus on the White Sox chances in the stretch run to win the central. Sure, Chris Sale can make spot starts but I'm not comfortable with someone in his first full season in the big leagues trying to win games in September.
The White Sox under-achieved all season but they are only 3.5 games back in a very winnable division. Any move that is made has to be asked "Does this help us close the gap to Detroit?" and from this trade, I can say that the answer is no. Reinsdork saves money but it takes away from this years team. Jackson wasn't spectacular, but he did his job. This team has talent but some players haven't worked out (Rios, Dunn). Instead of trading away Jackson, they could have made Rios and Dunn accountable and benched them before today.
It will be interesting to see how this trade works out. What are your thoughts?
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