Killah_Priest's Offseason Plan
Some of the money in the contracts and trades are probably off, but this isn't real anyway, so on with it…
Arbitration-eligible (with projected salaries from MLBTR):
Tyler Flowers, $3.5M - Tender
Avisail Garcia, $2.3M - Tender
Nate Jones, $900K - Tender
Zach Putnam, $800K - Tender
Dan Jennings, $800K – Tender
Pretty self-explanatory. I don't believe Garcia will get that much, but I don't plan on having him here anyway.
Contract options (pick up or buy out):
Alexei Ramirez: $10M for 2016 or a $1 million buyout
Pick Up: Again, this isn't really a tough decision, albeit having Ramirez around for $10M may constrain the team budget, it'll work itself out just fine. If he's having a solid year and the team is out of contention, then he's a trade candidate and Tim Anderson can be brought in to take over. Also, the free agent alternatives aren't too inspiring.
Impending free agents (re-sign, let go, or qualifying offer?):
Jeff Samardzija: $15.8M qualifying offer - QO
Matt Albers: Made $1.5M in 2015 – Let Go
Gordon Beckham: Made $2M in 2015 – Let Go
Geovany Soto: Made $1.5M in 2015 – Let Go
Obviously offer Samardzija the QO and wave good-bye to that fiasco along with Beckham and Soto(even though he wasn't that bad, but I have other plans at catcher). Albers was a tougher decision, but ultimately the Sox have enough bullpen pieces to prevent handing out $3-$4M to keep him around.
C Matt Wieters (3yrs, $33M). Hopefully he isn't offered a QO because he's definitely not worth losing a pick over, but at three years for an average of $11M annually with some incentives in the deal will work. Provided he remains relatively healthy, he will give the Sox solid defense and offense(from both sides of the plate as well) for a couple of years until the organization can develop some younger options behind the plate.
3B/2B Yulieski Gourriel (2yrs, $10M). This one is a "bit of a long shot", but hopefully the scouts have done the work and the team approaches his people about a MLB deal to play 3B for the Sox. A superstar in Cuba and already 31, this is a bit of a high risk high reward situation that if it works will do wonders for the team, but if it doesn't, well that's money well wasted. Still, I'd rather take a chance on his talents then to run Saladino/Olt/Davidson out there everyday or to waste assets trading for Frazier who I'm not that enamored with.
OF Jason Heyward (7yrs, $150M). The big one that will eat up that Samardzija QO pick, but I believe it will be well worth it. The gold glove level defense and solid bat with room to grow will make this team better all around. Also, he's 26 and about to enter his prime, so hopefully Uncle Jerry can open up the pockets for this one.
LHP Mark Buehrle (1yr, $6M). One more year for Mr. Buehrle to finish his career on the southside and bridge to gap to Fullmer/Montas/Danish.
LHP Neal Cotts (1yr, $1.75M). Finishig up the bullpen with a LH option.
John Danks, Dan Jennings & Daniel Webb to the Nationals for Johnathan Papelbon & Isaac Ballou. With Danks and Papelbon having only one year left on their deals, I'd figure maybe the Nats would like to replace a part of the departing staff with a motivated Danks trying to earn another payday in an easier league. Jennings to replace Thornton and Webb as a project. Papelbon had an incident in the dugout and maybe it would do some good to move on from him. Ballou can be included or not, but another organizational OF would help. Some money from the Sox might have to be kicked in, but if not, this move saves around $6M or so.
Avisail Garcia & Maikel Cleto to the Braves for LHP Max Fried & 1B Braxton Davidson. Thinking on this one is the Braves could take a chance with the upside of Garcia and plug him into the OF on a rebuilding team and the Sox take a chance on a couple of wild card talents in Fried, who is recovering from TJ surgery and a young 1B in Davison. Saves a bit of cash as well.
Adam LaRoche to BOS for INF Jeremy Rivera. Pure salary dump if BOS would actually do it, the rationale is LaRoche will rebound and Fenway plays to LH's. Also, can provide good defense at 1B and perhaps DH if Ortiz is gone.
2016 White Sox
L Adam Eaton (LF)
R Jose Abreu (1B)
S Melky Cabrera (DH)
L Jason Heyward (RF)
R Yulieski Gourriel (3B)
S Matt Wieters
R Alexei Ramirez (SS)
S Carlos Sanchez (2B)
R Trayce Thompson (CF)
R Tyler Flowers (C/1B)
L J.B. Shuck (OF)
L Micah Johnson (INF/OF/PR)
R Tyler Saladino (INF)
LHP Chris Sale
LHP Jose Quintana
LHP Carlos Rodon
LHP Mark Buehrle
RHP Erik Johnson
CL: RHP David Robertson
Set-Up: RHP Johnathan Papelbon
Set-Up: LHP Zack Duke
Mid: RHP Jacob Petricka
Mid: RHP Nate Jones
Mid: LHP Neal Cotts
Long: RHP Zach Putnam
3B, C & RF offensively and defensively are the biggest concerns to me and those were solved with Heyward, Wieters and Gourriel. Danks, LaRoche & Avi were moved to make room for more money to sign those guys and to add some prospects and sure up the 25 man roster. Buehrle & Cotts add some nostalgia factor as well.