The Chicago White Sox have been the forgotten Chicago baseball team over the last decade. With the Cubs winning the World Series in 2016,and racking up multiple winning seasons, the White Sox were left in their shadow. Back in 2017, the Sox decided to blow things up and try to reset the franchise by trading away multiple key pieces. In return, the White Sox brought in multiple elite prospects, but rebuilding takes time. However, now, it seems like all that time has paid off.
The Southside ball club is one game back of the Cleveland Indians for first place in the American League Central Division. They have had a magical season so far, throwing no-hitters and setting offensive records left and right. And with the new expanded playoff format, the White Sox have been given over a 98 percent chance of making the playoffs. The Sox have one of the best young teams in all of baseball with a great chance to build a core over the next few years that can compete for not one, but multiple championships. However, the question everyone is asking is, should the Sox trade away some of their high-end prospects to get a piece that could help their title chase this year? The answer is yes, but only if it is for the right price and right player. As of right now, the White Sox still have a relatively deep farm system despite most of their highend talent reaching the bigs. All the players on the Major League club will be off limits, but anyone on their minor league rosters could potentially be on the move. The one thing the Southsiders could use is another starting pitcher. Some of the names the Sox have been connected to have been Lance Lynn, Trevor Bauer and Brandon Woodruff. Let’s take a deeper dive in what the price tags might be for some of these players.
Lynn is currently on a two year deal making $8 million a year, so if the White Sox were to trade for him, he would not be a one year rental, and it would also make his price tag a bit steeper. Lynn has been the second best pitcher dating back to last season according to WAR ranking, sitting only behind Jacob DeGrom. The Rangers need to boost their poor farm system so dealing away Lynn for prospects makes sense. However, they’re not going to give him away for pennies. Many other teams are interested such as the Yankees, Twins and Braves. If the Sox want to get in the bidding war with those teams, any potential deal would have to start around Michael Kopechor Dane Dunning. While getting two years of Lynn would be nice, I don’t think the White Sox will be able to out bid teams closer to contention for the top pitcher on the market.
Next on the White Sox wishlist is Bauer. Bauer has been superb this year with lots of life on his pitches. The thing with Bauer is that he is only on a one year deal, so he would be a rental if a club traded for him. The media claims the Reds are looking for a big return if they are going to deal Bauer. I personally don’t think it would be a good idea to trade a top end prospect unless you knew there was a good chance to resign him in the offseason. In a normal year, it would make more sense to trade for a rental like Bauer because you would be able to get plenty of starts out of him. However, in a shortened season, if the Sox were to trade for him, they would be getting less than 10 starts from him, and I don’t think that’s worth what the Reds are skiing for.
The last guy the Southsiders have been linked to is the Brewer’s ace Woodruff. Woodruff is under team control for the next four years, and has been quietly popping up in trade rumors. This is the one guy on my list I would be willing to give up a substantial amount for. I would be willing to build a package around Andrew Vaughn and Jared Kelley, the Sox’s second round pick this year. Woodruff is in the prime of his career and a proven ace under team control. The Brewers would receive two elite prospects with a couple fillers to go with them, and both teams get better in my opinion.
Final stretch of the 2020 season is underway, and it will be interesting to see what happens come the trade deadline on Monday afternoon. Like I’ve said since 2017 though, 2020 is going to be a special year for the White Sox. In Hahn we trust, Happy Trade Deadline!