By the end of last night, I was pretty done with the whole Machado situation. I had run through the stages of grief that being a White Sox fan necessitates. I had reached acceptance. Then, before retiring for the evening I saw a tweet from Bruce Levine that told us a great deal. Not so much about Rick Hahn and his sleep patterns. Try Ambien Rick. No, the part about the White Sox refusing to make a deal for Machado that included opt out language. The White Sox don't agree with that philosophy.
That simple admission reignited my frustration with the White Sox and this whole episode. Don't agree with that philosophy? It makes me wonder if the White Sox have been paying attention to the sport landscape of the last 10-15 years. Opt outs are practically standard, especially when it comes to big time deals for big time players. Make no mistake, Machado at age 26 is big time.
As yesterday wore on, the White Sox organization and some of their pals in the media REALLY wanted everyone to know that they tried, but gee golly, Machado went for the money. As Hahn said, it was a step forward to be at the table. Turns out, with their antiquated thinking, the White Sox had no business being at the table. Furthermore, being at the table means nothing. As was reported a month or so ago in Forbes, baseball is swimming in money. Every team could be at that table, they just simply chose not to be.
I'm not sure what kind of validation the White Sox organization wants, but it doesn't really deserve any. We, as fans, are often told baseball is a business. OK, I get that. So, to judge them like a business, simply put, they failed. Trying hard, having a sleepless night, getting to the table means nothing if you don't get the deal done. Don't believe me? Ask someone in business how much credit they get if they DON'T land the big account, close the big sale, broker the big deal. The answer is, of course, zero. Fail enough times? Out you go.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: I don't root for the White Sox financial stability. I don't congratulate them for missing out, for getting close. I root for them to win championships. Signing Machado would have been a step in that direction. Not getting him is a failure. Not getting him because of an outmoded way of thinking is worrisome and makes me seriously doubt if, other than the occasional sleeping dog playoff appearance, if the White Sox can actually build a sustained winning baseball team.