We're about to get balls deep into Hot Stove Szn, and depending on the year, Hot Stove Szn can be awesome... or it can suck ass. Take the 2019-20 offseason for instance - it was great. Big signing after big signing after big signing, and the White Sox kicked it off on November 21st with their signing of Yasmani Grandal. After that, a waterfall effect occurred and players like Gerrit Cole and Anthony Rendon were all locked up rather quickly. Bang bang bang, one after the other.
This winter I anticipate things to move slowly. REALLY REALLY slowly. Owners and front office execs have been publicly saying that they have to "settle their budgets" and shit like that in response to the fanless 60 game season we just had. I get it - owners don't want to lose money. It's hard for us to see that as fans, as we're typically just a bunch of middle class bums that don't want to hear billionaires crying poor, but billionaires aren't billionaires because they're reckless with money; they're billionaires because they're smart with it. They know when to spend and when not to spend.
I just hope soon to be 85 year old Jerry Reinsdorf decides to spend and to spend big. We'll get into the Trevor Bauers and the George Springers later on down the road, but assuming they will not be in play for the two big boys on the FA market this winter, I went a different route on how to round out the White Sox rotation in 2020 and beyond - the trade route.
And after looking at 40 man rosters from around baseball, I have narrowed my wish list down to 2 people, one of which I would pay a pretty penny for: German Marquez of the Colorado Rockies.
Simply put, this dude is filthy. FILTHY… But his stats have been
somewhat really inflated do to his home park.
Here are his standard splits for home vs. road:
and here are his advanced splits for home vs. road:
Those numbers are night and day different, and we all get it. It's fucking awful pitching in the thin air of Coors Field and Marquez has struggled in his few years of trying. But get him in a normal atmosphere where bunts don't travel 500 feet if they find a barrel? The dude becomes one of the better work horses in all of baseball, and the operating adjective of this sentence is workhorse. Dude's good for 175+ IP a year. Just quality, quality innings.
And I know what you're thinking: "WSD you've been jerking this dude off this morning, if he's so good why in the fuck would the Rockies want to trade him?"
A few reasons.
1. The Rockies STINK. Absolutely terrible in spite of their loaded core. They were 26-34 in 2020 and only won 71 games in 2019. They are so top heavy it's gross. Why wouldn't they want to unload their core, build a powerhouse farm system, shed payroll, and compete in 2023-24 or so? Because they could, and it starts with guys like Marquez, even maybe before Arrenado if you take money into account.
2. Because he'd return a HUGE package. Marquez sort of reminds me of Quintana to an extent. The White Sox version of Quintana that is - not the sexiest pitcher, but will give you 175+ quality innings a year. Just a 6+ IP, 2ER start machine…. and those types of guys are absurdly valuable in terms of prospect capital.
3. And prospect capital brings me to my last point - Marquez would fetch a HAUL for Colorado. I am assuming Vaughn is untouchable. That means you headline a deal with Kopech, then one of Cease/Madrigal would be piece #2, with two throw ins on top. Think Jose Quintana - Eloy, Cease and two dudes who are no longer in the system. That's about what German would cost, and perhaps even more. Would maybe have to include a 3rd piece of consequence a la Micker Adolfo who's profile plays into the Rockies M.O.
Why's German so valuable though? Well on top of being awesome, he's also controlled and cheap as fuck:
For a 25 year old? Yeah that's gonna cost any team trying to acquire him in a trade big time. That's why Sale, Eaton, Quintana were so expensive - not only were they good, they were cheap. Marquez checks every single box in what the Sox will most likely be looking for in a return in a trade for a SP1:
1. Controlled through the Sox "window"
2. Recent success (not a lottery ticket)
3. "Cheap" contract
I'm just throwing darts here - I'd love to just buy talent this year. Go and fill holes that way, no? Just buy Springer and buy Bauer. It's that simple. But I don't think Jerry Reinsdorf signs off on those two moves. I hope I'm wrong and the Sox don't mortgage any prospect capital in a move for someone like a German Marquez, but I'm trying to think with my brain here. History says buying the best free agents just ain't happening on the South Side. But it's of DIRE importance the Sox acquire a pitcher that they can reasonably give the ball to in game 3 of a post season series 11 months from now. Right now, they just don't have that. Kopech could be that, but he hasn't been on a big league mound in 2+ years now. Dunning and Cease… maybe, but they have a ton of refinement to work on. Marquez would be that guy. Would love to hear that the White Sox are interested in him this winter, he just makes a boat load of sense if they're not in line for Bauer.