The White Sox are second to none at baseball at two things:
2. signing their stars to long term deal, pre arb, “cheap” deals. Chris Sale, Jose Quintana, Adam Eaton, Tim Anderson, Eloy Jimenez and a few smaller level deals are all the work of Hahn and Co.
Now we don’t know the financials of the deal yet. I’m guessing it will be really similar to Eloy Jimenez’ deal, a deal that guarantees Jimenez $43MM and around $80MM if his two club options are picked up in 2025-26.
UPDATE: here are the financials:
Now, I had cheap in quotation marks because this is probably going to be a record setting contract for a player that’s never stepped foot on an MLB field before. After the update, it is indeed a record. If he produces like he’s capable of, we’re golden. The two extra years are worth it even if you’re paying well over market for him in years 1-6. If he flops, they are paying WAY above market for a player that does carry risk.
Do I love it? For the most part, fuck yeah I do, and so will all Sox fans should he pan out like we think he will. Then again, let’s play devil’s advocate. My ONE issue is that they’re only getting him for one extra year of control. I would have *strongly* preferred 2, but whatever. Here’s a text from an agent who fucking hates the deal:
They’re guaranteeing over-market deals to guys with zero MLB experience. You can not rationalize this.
They clearly value owning them for 10 years and overpaying early rather than paying them market value early and trying to extend them later.
It’s a wildly ambitious thing to do that makes little sense because of the risk but hey, good for them.
Thennnn we got the financials:
Holy fuck this is historically bad. That’s worse than eloy. That might be the worst team deal I’ve ever seen
News flash: IDGAF. And neither should you. Get him on the opening day 25 man and let’s fucking COOK. He has the loudest “tools” of any prospect in baseball right now. Dude’s a 6’3″, 220 pound freak athlete. Just look at this monster:
If he were born in the States he’d be dominating baseball and football at some SEC school. Fucking freak. Should he taps into his hit tool by limiting his swing/miss and drawing more walks, we have yet another perennial all star on our hands. Someone who can play ++ defense at a premier position, steal 30+ bases, hit 30+ dingers and hit .300.
I’ve raised concerns about him as a hitter before. His swing is quiet and mechanically sound, but his approach is far from perfect at this juncture. I see him getting EXPOSED by big league pitching right off the bat. That doesn’t mean he won’t eventually settle in and dominate, but he has a pull happy approach and gets around the baseball. He gets away with doing that against AAA scrubs, he won’t get away with that against MLB pitchers that can snap a hitter’s knee caps with how they bend baseballs.
That said, once he does adjust, it’ll be off to the races. This is how I’d construct the lineup against RHP until the young guns get their feet wet, even though it’s admittedly not a good R/L mix:
1. Grandal C (best OBP guy)
2. Moncada 3B (best hitter)
3. Eloy LF (will be better than Abreu this year IMO)
4. Encarnacion DH (let him mash)
5. Abreu 1B (Ricky won’t ever drop him from 3 which is annoying)
6. Anderson SS (will regress because of BABIP gods and doesn’t walk)
7. Robert (eventually 3-5, and he’s going to have to work his dick off in CF and there’s not a ton of pressure in the 7 hole)
8. Mazara RF
9. Madrigal 2B (eventually leadoff)
That’s a fun lineup. Going off steamer projections, one that has 250+ home run potential. Ball go far, team go far.
Last thing on the to do list is to check off a 1-2 relievers (Will Harris?) then get Kopech/Rodon healthy and go win a goddamn division.
Shoutout to Jerry, Kenny and Rick. Masterful offseason.
PS – love the responses to this tweet: