Last October, I posted a template for the 2014-15 White Sox offseason for members of SSS to fill in. The level of participation was outstanding, with more than 40 submitted within the first fortnight, and most of them thoughtful and reasonable.
So let's do it again.
Below, you'll find a White Sox offseason plan template that you can copy and paste into a FanPost on the right rail. If you're new to FanPosts, you can find the link on the right side of the home page (CTRL-F "Write a FanPost" or "Post your own") once you're logged in. Here's a good example of what a finished product looks like.
The template starts with tying up loose ends on the White Sox roster. After that, the floor is open, and you have the entire league and open market at your disposal.
A couple of guidelines:
- Cot's Baseball Contracts has the White Sox's payroll obligations. Try to keep it under $135 million. That might be a high payroll number, but the Sox outspent our $110 million estimate last season, so we'll err on the side of flexibility this time..
- MLB Trade Rumors has a list of 2015-16 MLB free agents. Note the players with options, and exercise logic in whether the team will exercise those options.
Start here and have fun:
- - - - - - - - - - - [cut along the perforated line] - - - - - - - - - - -
[Insert your name]'s Offseason Plan
Arbitration-eligible (with projected salaries from MLBTR):
Write "tender" or "non-tender" after each of the following names (note: you can trade before or after tendering a contract):
- Tyler Flowers, $3.5M
- Avisail Garcia, $2.3M
- Nate Jones, $900K
- Zach Putnam, $800K
- Dan Jennings, $800K
Explain the toughest calls if necessary:
Contract options (pick up or buy out)
- Alexei Ramirez: $10M for 2016 or a $1 million buyout
Explain in a sentence or two, as it could be divisive:
Impending free agents (re-sign, let go, or qualifying offer?):
- Jeff Samardzija: $15.8M qualifying offer
- Matt Albers: Made $1.5M in 2015
- Gordon Beckham: Made $2M in 2015
- Geovany Soto: Made $1.5M in 2015
Elaborate if needed:
Peruse the list of potential free agents and name two (or more) you would pursue, the max offer you would extend to them, and a brief explainer. A good-bad example:
No. 1: Gordon Beckham (two years, $8M). He just needed to come back to Chicago after going somewhere else, start in a bench role, seize the starting job, flop again and become a nonfactor over the last two months to really understand what's been holding him back.
Propose two (or more) trades that you think sound reasonable for both sides, and the rationale behind them. A good-bad example:
No. 1: Jose Quintana for Ryan Zimmerman and Joe Ross. Third time's the charm with Washington Nationals first basemen.
It may be hard to completely filter out the homer or fantasy baseball player in you, but try your best to keep the suggestions sane.
If you end up with a concrete 25-man roster, feel free to list it. What's more important is describing how you resolved key positions, whether they're ones we know (third base, right field, shortstop) or previously stable areas you altered on your own with a shocking trade.
For some, part of the game might be trying to guess as much of the 2016 roster as possible. But really, you don't need to be a comprehensive roster architect to participate, because you might have one idea that gets people talking, and that's just as worth it. The point of this project is to survey the community and consider as many realistic names and angles as possible before the Sox start making the moves that count.