White Sox

Hawk Harrelson calls it a career: 'I've been blessed, but it's over'

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AP

Hawk Harrelson calls it a career: 'I've been blessed, but it's over'

CLEVELAND -- He gone (for the most part).

Sunday’s broadcast marked the end of a 33-year run as the White Sox full-time play-by-play announcer for Hawk Harrelson. Harrelson, who also was the White Sox general manager for one season (1986), officially announced plans to retire and work a reduced schedule earlier in the season. He’s set to call 20 games in 2018 as Jason Benetti moves into the full-time role.

“Baseball’s been great to me,” Harrelson said. “I’ve been blessed. I love this game.

“It’s been a good ride. I’ve had a lot of fun. I’ve been blessed, but it’s over.”

The Cleveland Indians honored Harrelson with a video montage in the first inning. Harrelson spent parts of three seasons with the Indians (1969-71) and thinks his former team has what it takes to win the World Series this season. He also thinks highly of the White Sox chances, though believes they’ll be ready to compete in 2020, not 2019. Part of Harrelson’s belief stems from his trust in manager Rick Renteria as well as the influx of prospects.

“I’m going to have so much fun watching this club,” Harrelson said. “Three years from now this team is going to be a freaking monster. They’ve got the right guy in Renteria.”

Harrelson started to choke up as he discussed the highlights of a career in baseball that began in 1959. He’d like to stay involved in baseball until the 2020 season, which would put him in rare company. If Harrelson works until 2020, he’d join Vin Scully, Tommy Lasorda, Don Zimmer and Dave Garcia as the only people to work eight decades in baseball.

“I went to the World Series in the seventh game,” Harrelson said. “And I think my second-favorite moment was in 2005 when we won the World Series. I’ve had so many great moments that I’ve called. I had 11 no-hitters, a perfect game, Jim Thome’s 500th. Of course, my favorite is Mark Buehrle’s perfect game.

"I did something that I think nobody else has ever done or will ever do again. I called Jermaine Dye’s 300th home run, and the very next hitter was Paul Konerko, and I called his 300th home run the very next hitter. I don’t think that will ever be done again, back-to-back 300th home runs. I’m just so happy.”

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Machado Watch continues for White Sox

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Machado Watch continues for White Sox

Seth Gruen (Bleacher Report/”Big Ten Unfiltered” podcast), Chris Emma (670TheScore.com) and Scott King (WGN Radio) join Kap on the panel. Machado Watch continues. Will the Orioles actually trade him? Meanwhile, has Alex Cobb’s price tag become too high for the Cubs?

Vincent Goodwill joins Kap to talk Bulls and the guys discuss how much Mitch Trubisky needs to win to help his development.

White Sox reportedly not offering up top prospects for Manny Machado

White Sox reportedly not offering up top prospects for Manny Machado

The Manny Machado saga spins on, though it’s looking far less promising for White Sox fans who wanted to see the Baltimore Orioles’ superstar third baseman come to the South Side this winter.

USA Today’s Bob Nightengale chronicled the latest happenings with Machado in an exhaustive Thursday report that heavily featured the White Sox, who apparently have not decided to blow up their rebuilding effort by dealing away multiple top prospects. That’s not happening, per Nightengale, who reported the White Sox didn’t include any of their highest rated guys in an offer that was at one point reported to be the best out there for Machado. Nightengale did still report the White Sox offer as “solid.”

In fact, as Nightengale continued, it seems the White Sox made their offer completely expecting to have Machado for just the 2018 season. Machado is slated to be one of the headliners of next winter’s crazy good free-agent class.

The catch comes, perhaps not surprisingly to those familiar with the Orioles’ reputation, from Baltimore owner Peter Angelos, who is dramatically concerned that the White Sox would acquire Machado simply to flip him elsewhere in a trade — specifically, Angelos worries, to the New York Yankees, the Orioles’ division rivals. Nightengale added that the White Sox have repeatedly assured the Orioles they won’t do such a thing, but Angelos doesn’t seem to be sold.

The big headline for the White Sox, though, from the whole thing is that all this buzz and speculation doesn’t seem to involve them pulling a 180 on what they’ve worked for more than a year to do: gather a ton of highly touted prospects and build a homegrown champion. Michael Kopech, who seemed to fit the Orioles’ wishes as a young controllable pitcher, has been said to be “untouchable.” And if none of the organization’s top prospects were included in the deal, as Nightengale said, it’d be logical to assume that Lucas Giolito wasn’t involved in the team’s trade proposal either.

The White Sox became the buzz of baseball on the final day of the Winter Meetings with reports flying all over the place that they were making the most aggressive push for Machado and that they had made the Orioles the best offer of any team. The initial, middle-of-the-night report from The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal listed Kopech and Giolito as potential trade chips.

But a trade seemed to make little sense for the South Siders, who would have to give up multiple of their precious prospects — players projected to be the future of the big league team and deliver perennial contention — for nothing more than one guaranteed season of Machado, who is expected to receive a huge payday once he hits the free-agent market. Even with Machado, the White Sox wouldn’t figure to be a championship contender in 2018. That’d be putting all the eggs into one basket, that one season in Chicago would somehow convince Machado to skip the free-agent frenzy and sign with the White Sox.

Simply put, it’d be an incredibly risky move.

But apparently those aren’t the dice Rick Hahn and his front office are ready to roll, which ought to ease the concerns of rebuild fans, even if it might disappoint those who wanted to see Machado come to Chicago.