The slow burn of Jose Quintana's rumor mill rolls into the new year.
Ken Rosenthal gave us an update about Quintana trade talks Wednesday afternoon, and while there weren’t any new names added or levels reached, the steadiness is newsworthy in and of itself.
Suitors, both in terms of numbers and interest levels, usually ebb and flow over the course of any trade story arc (see Chris Sale and the Braves, for example). Much like Quintana himself, though, the party has been reliable: Pirates, Astros and Yankees, with the Yankees’ carrying downplaying attached.
Or I could just let Rosenthal tell it:
Sources add: #WhiteSox firm on Quintana’s value; also could move him at deadline. NYY seem less willing than others to move top prospects.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 4, 2017
If #WhiteSox move Quintana, they likely will sign free-agent SP on one-year deal to help protect youngsters. Could always flip at deadline.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 4, 2017
The last update — nearly a half-hour after the first two — is kind of a curious addition, in that it reads as though the Sox have already girded their loins for life after Quintana. Yet it’s also a fairly obvious assessment to those who know the Sox’ depth chart, since they’re going to need viable MLB options to keep the prospects incubated in the minors for as long as necessary.
I wouldn’t count that point meaningful in and of itself, but it’s a small addition to the sense that the White Sox are eventually going to get something done with somebody this winter. They don’t have to, because while four years of team control is more than 31⁄2, it’s feasible that other teams’ timetables could open up and more willingly accommodate Quintana, resulting in no net market loss. Yet if I had to wager, I’d guess that the plausible deniability will ultimately allow the Sox to exercise leverage to their liking this time around.
One of those one-year pitchers may be off the market soon. Both national and local reporters are saying that the Texas Rangers are advancing on talks with the former Padre, who missed just about all of 2016 with shoulder problems. That resulted in shoulder surgery in October, and he may not be ready for Opening Day.