Chicago White Sox

Recent Trades May Spell Return to Mediocrity on the South Side

Did Kenny Williams get enough in return for workhorse Freddy Garcia and future ace Brandon McCarthy? White Sox fans better hope so.In 2005 the White Sox rode their rock steady starting pitching rotation all the way to the World Series title. In 2006 the rotation sprung a few leaks which played a large role in the Sox coming up a few games short of the postseason.
    But rather than calling the plumber to patch up these leaks, general manager Kenny Williams is on the phone with contractors all over the country to try to rebuild a whole new pitching staff.
    He has already dealt workhorse 17-game winner Freddie Garcia and their once touted future ace Brandon McCarthy. He also was on the verge of dealing 18-game winner Jon Garland to Houston. In return for Garcia and McCarthy, Williams netted four pitching prospects with virtually no major league experience.
    There is the chance that Williams may have found a couple of future stars with these deals. But there is also the chance that Williams may have given up two future 20-game winners for a group of guys who never live up to their potential at the big league level.
    Was it really necessary for Williams to take such a big risk? Is it really possible to think that 2005’s best rotation in baseball would need to be totally rebuilt within two years? Wasn’t Garcia traded primarily to make room for McCarthy, who has shown flashes of brilliance in a limited number of starts in the big leagues?
    Sure, there were financial considerations in the Garcia deal, but the White Sox have recently become one of the most popular sports teams in Chicago. However Williams seems intent on spending money as if they were the Pirates or Royals.
    Speaking of the Royals, it’s hard to figure out what Williams accomplished by dealing underutilized Ross Gload to Kansas City for Andrew Sisco. In giving up Gload, an unselfish role player who hit .327 and swiped six bases in limited action last year, the Sox get a pitcher who looks a lot like Matt Thornton (6-10, left-handed) but whose numbers (7.10 ERA) earned him a trip to AAA last year. If he had a hard time being effective enough to stick with the Royals, what makes Williams think he can help the Sox?
    Sisco is reportedly going to get a look as a starter to see if he can find success in that role. And why is it again that the Sox are in such a desperate state to find starting pitching all of the sudden?
    This promises to be a very interesting and unpredictable season for the Sox. Sadly, what very recently looked like the potential for a dynasty anchored by a solid pitching staff now looks more like that ugly face of mediocrity that plagued this franchise’s devout fans for many decades prior to 2005.

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