I wanted the other bloggers on SB Nation to play GM, so I wrote them and asked them what they'd give in return for certain White Sox players. Thanks to Dan, Patrick, Adam and Kris for playing along. First up, John Danks. I only got a few replies but here they are. They include some scouting reports.
Arizona Diamondbacks (via Dan Strittmatter)
An interesting trade chip here is the aforementioned Corbin, a polished lefty who led the Double-A Southern League in strikeouts this year (though he didn't have a particularly prolific K%) and projects as a solid mid-to-back-end starter as soon as next year, something you mentioned that you wanted in a return package. He's currently one of the names being mentioned as a possibility for a D-backs Opening Day rotation spot, but if Victor Wang's surplus value calculations are to be believed, his ~$7MM surplus value provides a nice starting point for a Danks package.
Corbin is still very thin and might have a bit of velocity left in him, but is very athletic and currently ranges his fastball anywhere from the upper-80's to 92, 93 mph, able to reach back for even a bit more when necessary. The D-backs like Corbin's changeup as a possible plus out-pitch offering, but most other reports I've seen label Corbin as a three-pitch average-to-above-average guy, with a fastball, changeup, breaking ball (a bit slurvy) combo. He gets by on superb control and command, and was named by Baseball America as possessing the best control in the SL in 2011, which means he actually managed to be supposedly better than Matt Moore at something.
However, Corbin alone probably isn't quite enough to seal the deal. Arizona doesn't have much in the realm of position player depth on the farm, but with all of the upper-end pitching around that should provide a couple of established big-league starters by 2013 - which makes the one year of control of Danks strangely ideal, I might add - Arizona can probably afford to give up a pair of arms in a deal for Danks. Perhaps something like Corbin and fellow southpaw Patrick Schuster (highly projectable with a quality slider but currently just upper-to-mid-80's with an arm slot that might put him in the 'pen)? Corbin and Jesse Darrah (low-90's, good changeup, work-in-progress breaking ball), an eighth-round pick from the '11 draft? Corbin and hard-throwing Double-A relief prospect Yonata Ortega (throws hard, lots of walks... you know the story)? Basically, any combination of Corbin and one or two C/C+ grade guys could make this deal work very well for both sides. Quite a few possibilities here if you ask me, with Arizona's dancing plethora of cheap minor-league arms matching up with the White Sox's desire for cheap pitching, while the solid one year of control of Danks works well with Arizona's short-term desire for another rotation anchor.
Cincinnati Reds (via KCGARD2)
Another option getting some attention in Reds circles. He'd be a definite upgrade in our rotation, though not the true top-line starter we covet. Also, he seems to be getting a lot of love from other teams so his asking price might be rather high for Jocketty's tastes. As for my tastes, I'd offer Travis Wood (good minor league numbers as lefty starter, good rookie debut, rougher sophomore season, still young at 25 next year), Sappelt, and Matt Klinker (minor league pitcher probably a relief arm at MLB level with upside). I'd probably have to include another prospect. I might go so far as to include Homer Bailey, but payroll becomes an issue for the Reds if a lot of current MLB players are included.
Texas Rangers (via Adam J. Morris)
Olt was picked by the Rangers in the supplemental first round of the 2010 draft, and has become the most highly regarded of the team's 2010 draft picks. The 22 year old third baseman spent the year at high-A Myrtle Beach, although he missed much of the season after fracturing his collarbone in a home plate collision.
Olt is considered a plus defender at third base, and while he doesn't profile as a high-average hitter, he displays power and good plate discipline. Prior to his injury, Olt was seen as someone who would be appearing on the Top 100 prospect lists, with some folks saying he would have been a top 50 prospect if he'd stayed healthy. Olt figures to start the 2012 season at AA Frisco.
Mendez was acquired from the Boston Red Sox as part of the Jarrod Saltalamacchia trade in 2010, Mendez throws hard but is still figuring out how to pitch. Just 21 years old, Mendez spent all of 2011 with Hickory in the Sally League, with the team continuing to let him develop as a starter, although some think his future is as a reliever. His fastball is in the mid-90s, and he's supposedly hit 99 before, with a slider that is described as having plus potential. He also throws a changeup that is a work in progress.
Garcia is a 20 year old shortstop whose calling cards are speed and defense. He didn't hit much in high-A this year, but then, he was a 20 year old in the Carolina League. He performed well in the Arizona Fall League in 2011. The knock on him is that he's so small (5'7", 153 lbs) and has so little pop that he'll struggle to hit at the higher levels.
Detroit Tigers (via TigerDog1)
Andy Oliver and Casey Crosby. Two young lefty starting pitchers that project to be No 2 or 3 starters. with up to 12 years of club control combined. Dave Dombrowski would not make you this offer, but it's not my money to pay Danks, so I can make it. I'll have to extend him beyond this season to justify it.
Andrew Oliver- second round pick. A lefty starting pitcher that has made his major league debut but didn't stick. Has excellent velocity in the mid 90's and good stuff, now needs command.
Casey Crosby- just added to the roster. One of our top five prospects. A lefty starter with excellent stuff. Has been set back by injuries including Tommy John surgery. The good news is that he had a healthy full season in 2011, and that's what the Tigers wanted to see in his first full year back.
**Added 11/29/2011 8:35AM EST**
New York Yankees (via WilliamNYY) Full Write Up
The White Sox aren’t going to simply give Danks away, but it isn’t a stretch to think they might be willing to take a package of second tier prospects. Considering how rapidly catching prospect Tyler Flowers has fallen in many evaluator’s estimation, the White Sox might be attracted to an almost major league ready player like Austine Romine. Similarly, pitchers like Hector Noesi or Adam Warren might appeal as cheap options ready to step into the back end of the rotation. Whatever the pieces happen to be, the Yankees have plenty of depth, so they might be able pry Danks away without surrendering a top prospect.
** Added 11/30/2011 3:51PM EST**
Colorado Rockies (Via Andrew Fisher)
The Rockies desperately need an innings eating starter to ease the burden on Jhoulys Chacin, Drew Pomeranz and Alex White. If Danks would sign an extension in Colorado, it would be preferable, but if not, he could be flipped at the deadline, when Pomeranz (innings), Juan Nicasio (neck) and Jorge de la Rosa (Tommy John) figure to be in the rotation for good. I figure Williams would prefer one or two rotation prospects, so I'd try to push two of Edwar Cabrera, Christian Friedrich or Peter Tago. Any higher than that and we are talking Chad Bettis (SP with great 100mph fastball and 90mph slider), who is probably too rich for my blood. Danks would be fabulous in Colorado, but with 2012 likely not a contending year, the SP Colorado is looking for probably has more value in quantity of innings than quality, just to save the young arms. I bet the White Sox could do better than this offer, and if so, Colorado would be happy to find a less shiny innings eater to provide them with wht they need for less.