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Kenny Williams opens the vault

Ever since the Todd Ritchie trade and Moneyball hit the New York Times bestseller list, Kenny Williams has been portrayed as a bumbling fool by most people in the online baseball community. In fact, I'm sure if I searched other sites' response to his recent interview with Sports Illustrated's John Donovan, they'll be harping on the fact that Williams doesn't know what VORP is.

Of course, they'd be missing the point entirely.

Williams discusses his construction of the 2006 club, and the reason he felt the need to make major changes, acknowledging the Sox "luck" in 2005. He also states that though he may not know exactly what VORP is, he surrounds himself with people who do, and takes their input very seriously.

In addition to the Sports Illustraded article, Williams indicated to the Sun-Times' Joe Cowley that Freddy Garcia and Jon Garland came very close to being traded this off-season. He also noted that despite signing Jose Contreras to a 3-year deal, giving the Sox 6 starters (including Brandon McCarthy) locked up through '07, McCarthy will probably be in the rotation next year.

It seems that the one thing the Sox have found -- and they're not getting any credit for it -- is that cost certainty in the current pitching market is extremely valuable. When it costs 5/$55M for oft-injured pitchers with mediocre records, workhorses like Garland, Buehrle, Garcia, Vazquez will always be in demand, even at $10M a year.