Kevin Luchansky writes about Chicago baseball for WARR. Stay with us for his take on Cubs targets for the Hot Stove season.
The White Sox currently have just roughly $45 million or so committed to their 2015 roster. Big South Side names and regulars like Paul Konerko, Gordon Beckham, Adam Dunn and Alejandro De Aza are all gone and the market has officially opened up with Victor Martinez (who played a bigger role in this post prior to the announcement of his new contract) re-signing with the Detroit Tigers.
So, who can the Sox possibly tempt away from other MLB teams to ply their trade at 35th and Shields? Below are a few of the possible candidates for the Sox to go after this winter with the Hot Stove heating up:
Player: Nelson Cruz
Reason: Would provide power and some consistency to a outfield that was devoid of both even at hitter-friendly U.S. Cellular Field. Cruz showed in his first season back from suspension that he still has quite a bit of the pop he possessed with the Rangers, he hit a major league-high and career-high 40 home runs for the Orioles.
Cruz may come with a bit of a higher price tag than Hahn and Co. would perhaps like to spend, but he sure would produce a lot of deep flies in a stadium that consistently ranks in the top 10 of the most home run friendly ballparks.
How It Might Work: Cruz is an unrestricted free agent after turning down the Orioles qualifying offer. He could be looking for something along the lines of $15 to 18 million a season over four to five years.
Player: Asdrubal Cabrera
Reason: Cabrera is an above-average middle infielder defensively and the Sox could use a stopgap at second base that can also provide an aging Alexei Ramirez a day off here and there at short.
Coming off a sub-par year relative to his other individual campaigns, Cabrera may be available for a decent price. The only thing that might drive up that price is the scarcity of middle infielders available in this free agent pool.
How It Might Work: Cabrera is a 28-year old unrestricted free agent and the White Sox have the money to spend and an immediate need at second base.
Player: Andrew Miller
Reason: It’s obvious that the White Sox are in desperate need of bullpen help. What better to remedy relief issues than a seasoned lefty who is in the midst of playing his best baseball out of the bullpen?
Miller’s height, arm action and long delivery make it tough for hitters to locate his pitch types. Miller could be a set up or closer guy in a White Sox uniform and would give pitching coach Don Cooper an excellent weapon.
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