The trade deadline came and went, and it passed White Sox general manager Kenny Williams by. After making a few moves earlier this month to help improve the ball club, Williams was unable to add any addition pieces as of now.
Williams’ first move was adding Kevin Youkilis from the Boston Red Sox. Youkilis had a falling out with Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, which led to lack of production from the third baseman. Consequently, the White Sox were able to get him on the cheap, sending over minor league pitcher Zach Stewart and utility man Brent Lillibridge. The Red Sox eventually dealt Lillibridge to the Indians.
Williams’ second move was trading for Houston Astros closer Brett Myers. Myers brings a veteran presence to a mostly inexperienced bullpen, although the White Sox have not needed him to close. Myers has been very good so far in this set-up role, and the White Sox paid a very small price to get him: two minor leaguers and a player to be named later.
Williams’ third and final move came over the weekend, when in a move that caught many by surprise, the White Sox acquired Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Fransisco Liriano. The deal gives the White Sox a little more depth at starting pitcher, although they certainly could have used another. In the deal, the White Sox gave up Eduardo Escobar and minor league pitcher Pedro Hernandez.
Of the three moves, the Youkilis and Myers deals both have worked out quite well for the White Sox. The success of Liriano deal remains to be seen, as tonight will be his first start. Even with Liriano, Williams’ inability to add another starting pitcher at this point isn’t a good sign for the White Sox. Chris Sale’s innings limit will be creeping up on him, Gavin Floyd and Phillip Humber haven’t had many good outings, and there are whispers that John Danks may not return for the rest of the season.
Their bench also has little depth, as backup catcher Tyler Flowers has struggled to hit above .200. Their utility guy is a 31-year-old who has just 403 career at-bats and a .228 average, and they need to hope their outfield stays 100% healthy, as Jordan Danks is their only backup.
Even though what is called the “trade deadline” has passed, the movement is far from over. Now players must pass waivers in order to be traded. That could happen throughout the remainder of the season, although if a player is acquired after August 31, he is ineligible for the playoffs.
I would fully expect Williams to make some more moves to give this White Sox team more depth. They don’t need a superstar, and the types of players that can help this team will be available. As for the deadline that baseball fans refer to as “the deadline,” Williams was not able to improve the club yet. August roster movement will likely be the deciding factor in the American League Central.
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