Okay so this is an ESPN Insider article, and I really like Jeff Passan, so I'm not even going to consider publicly sharing anything that he didn't share himself out of respect to him since it's behind a paywall. That's fine though, because he talks about a lot of what we already know - that the White Sox are going to be buyers in the next 11 days and that they're leaving no stone unturned. They're scouring the earth for stars, fill-in-the-gap players, star relievers, vagabond relievers, you name it. That's pretty awesome.
One name that White Sox fans have seen floated a LOT recently is Trevor Story. I'll start by saying that Trevor Story is one of the very best SS's in all of baseball, in spite of the lackluster season he's having to date:
But nobody thinks a bad half of baseball is who Trevor Story is, and that's even with playing a bad half of baseball in the best hitter's park on earth. Trevor Story is a stud, plain and simple. He was a 5+ fWAR player/ 160 games for three straight years prior to 2021 and is as well rounded as any defensive SS in the game. There's not a team on earth who wouldn't want Trevor Story playing up the middle for them. Not one.
Not one other than the Colorado Rockies, that is…. Or that it should be. The Rockies should absolutely, positively be dealing him within the next 10 days. They're going absolutely nowhere and they could get a nice penny for him. But at the same time, he's still in Denver. Why? What is his purpose there? To me, there is none. Going scorched earth rebuild is the name of the game these days, as it's proven to work with the Astros, Cubs, White Sox and others. It takes a minute and is painful, but the end game typically works out.
The ONLY reason the Rockies won't trade Story is because they value the compensation pick + extra draft pool money they'd receive for him more than the package they'd get in return in a deal which…. doesn't add up to me. There's no doubt a team(s) would be willing to part with a prospect that should be of better value than the ~35th pick or so.
But the Rockies also owe Story around $6.5MM for the rest of the year. You have to weigh that against the prospects of having a compensation pick (plus that pick's bonus) and ~$2.5MM in extra draft pool. The Rockies are a weird, weird organization. They don't really have a GM right now and are sort of a rudderless ship. They signed Arrenado to a mega deal just to turn around and trade him a year later. They clearly care about the bottom line, but also don't at the same time? Sort of hard to explain…but perhaps they might just say "fuck it", keep Story, and pay the $6.5MM or so to Story to get the extra draft pool capital + pick.
I don't know what they do. I know what I THINK they should do, and that's trade Story. The history of comp pick success isn't all that great. They could undoubtedly return more of a sure thing, even if the ceiling isn't that high, in a hypothetical trade. With the White Sox showcasing their entire farm system so far this summer, you'd have to think that somebody on the White Sox would be of value to them. Burger? Sheets? High ceiling, further away players like Bryan Ramos? No idea who, but the White Sox have the pieces to get it done, that's for sure, and that's the moral of this story. The White Sox can absolutely acquire Story if they want to. Whether or not either team wants to tango is a different story… no pun intended.
To be more specific, I just don't know if I'd be willing to part with a Burger or Sheets if I'm the White Sox and I'd guess those are the two names the Rockies are looking at. In their limited samples thus far in 2021, both players absolutely look the part. They have major league approaches and are hitting for power. They were 1st and 2nd picks themselves and now producing at the big league level, and on value alone that should be enough to land Story + the ~$2.5MM the Rockies would be out on pool money. The Sox might have to throw in a sweetener because of the Rockies loss of pool money, but in the end it shouldn't be a player of future consequence anyways, so that's whatever.
Gun to head, I probably wouldn't trade either of those two names for Story, not unless the Rockies' best or near best reliever was attached. Story is a rental and both Burger and Sheets have 6 years of team control left. Fuck that. The Sox can circle back on trading them this winter for a non-rental after they've both had big hits in the World Series and have rings if they feel so inclined. The Sox aren't extending Story with Madrigal due to return at full strength come spring training 2022, so no thank you. You can take Luis Gonzales and you will be happy with it.
I'm kidding with the last sentence. Kinda.
What I do know is that the White Sox are in a GREAT position. It's an extreme buyer's market right now, with the playoff races already basically settled in a lot of divisions. The Sox have the luxury of having the leverage in a hypothetical deal for Story though due to an extreme amount of (should be) sellers and low amount of buyers. Supply and demand 101. The Sox can be patient until the very last minute and pounce on a primo piece like Story if they feel like it. If not? They'll augment the bullpen and find adequate reserves elsewhere knowing they have Eloy and Lu coming back soon. Not a bad spot to be in.
Loving everything about this team right now. That said, it'd be pretty sick to have this in the lineup….
1. TA SS
2. Story 2B
3. Moncada 3B
4. Abreu 1B
5. Grandal C
6. Eloy DH
7. Robert CF
8. Vaughn LF
9. Sheets RF
You'd have to mix and match due to handedness, but that's about what an October lineup would look like. That's a pretty scary fucking lineup that we could potentially see come October. I wouldn't hate it. Not one bit. Trevor Story is a stud and that is a fucking fact of life: