White Sox

Melky Cabrera understands White Sox trade, even if he doesn't like it

Melky Cabrera understands White Sox trade, even if he doesn't like it

The rebuilding White Sox continued to load up their farm system on Sunday with a trade that sent Melky Cabrera to the Kansas City Royals.

The White Sox received prospects AJ Puckett and Andre Davis in return, and also picked up half of Cabrera's $5.1 million remaining salary.

Cabrera, who signed with the White Sox in 2014 as a free agent, repeatedly stated that he would like to stay in Chicago for the long term but understands it's part of the business.

“Honestly, I wasn’t expecting this because I love the city, I love the team,” Cabrera said through a translator. “But at the same time you are seeing what’s happening around the team with all the moves, just try to block all those things, but I knew it was a possibility for this to happen.”

Cabrera is headed to familiar territory in Kansas City. The 32-year-old outfielder played with the Royals in 2011, where he had his best statistical season by setting career-highs in home runs (18), RBI (87), and hits (201).

This season, Cabrera has been excellent, recording 13 homers and 56 RBI while slashing .295/.336/.436. In three seasons on the South Side, he racked up 39 homers and 219 RBI but was just as valuable to the team in the locker room.

“As I told Melky this morning, he has been outstanding for this organization since he put on this uniform, not only for his performance in the white lines but for what he did in the clubhouse,” Hahn said. “He’s a great ambassador for the game, very enthusiastic, passionate player and he’ll be missed. That said, as we’ve made no secret about, this is about preparing ourselves for the future.”

The White Sox added a pair of young arms in Puckett and Davis. Puckett was the Royals’ second round pick in 2016 while Davis – a southpaw – was selected in the eighth round of the 2015 draft.

Puckett was the Royals’ No. 13 rated prospect, according to the MLB. With the White Sox, he sits at No. 25. The 22-year-old went 9-7 with a 3.90 ERA in 20 starts this season with Class-A Wilmington. A 23-year-old Davis went 5-4 with a 4.83 ERA with Class-A Lexington.

"With today’s move we were able to pick up another couple interesting arms," Hahn said. "Puckett, the Royals’ top pick last year, a second-rounder, strong pitchability, three pitch mix, commands the ball both sides of the plate, clean delivery. He’s a guy that’s good to add to our mix of young arms. Davis is a lefty that could project for the starter role or the relief role."

Since December, the White Sox have traded nine players off their big-league roster.

Those trades – along with draft picks – has revamped a White Sox minor league system which currently ranks one of the best in the league.

Hahn said that he has been pleased, but not surprised, with the returns from those players.

"This was our mission," Hahn said. "This is what we set out to do. This is what we felt was important for the long-term health of the organization. We had a plan. That said, you need to respond the market. It’s not always the easiest thing to get across the finish line."

By the time the trade deadline is over on Monday, more moves could be made.

“It’s not 3 o’clock Monday yet,” Hahn said. “We’re going to keep on with our conversations and see if they lead anywhere.”

The White Sox just traded for a really intriguing arm

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USA TODAY

The White Sox just traded for a really intriguing arm

The White Sox continued their rebuild Thursday by trading for an intriguing young right-handed pitcher.

The South Siders acquired Thyago Vieira from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for international signing bonus pool money.

The 24-year-old Vieira is a Brazilian native and has only made one appearance in the big leagues, striking out a batter in one perfect inning of work in 2017.

While his career minor-league numbers don't jump off the page — 14-19 with a 4.58 ERA, 1.48 WHIP, 13 saves and 7.4 K/9 in 290.2 innings \— Vieira has been reportedly clocked at 104 mph with his fastball and was ranked as the Mariners' No. 8 prospect at the time of the deal. He also held righties to .194 batting average in 2017.

Here's video of Vieira throwing gas:

And this may explain why Vieira was even available:

Control has been an issue throughout his career, as he's walked 4.6 batters per nine innings in the minors. He has improved in that regard over the last few seasons, however, walking only 22 batters in 54 innings across three levels in 2017 and he doled out only one free pass in 5.1 innings in the Arizona Fall League in 2016.

What does this deal mean in the big picture for baseball? How did the Sox pull off a move like this while not having to give up a player in return? 

This may help shed light on the situation from Baseball America's Kyle Glaser:

Either way, the White Sox may have just acquired a guy who could potentially throw his name in the hat for "future closer." Or at the very least, throw his name in the hat for "best name."

Is Avi Time coming to an end on the South Side?

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USA TODAY

Is Avi Time coming to an end on the South Side?

After posting career numbers in 2017, Avisail Garcia is already attracting trade suitors this offseason.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle's John Shea, the Oakland A's have interest in acquiring the outfielder, who would fill the team's need for a right-handed bat. 

The buzz should come as no surprise given Garcia produced a slash line of .330/.380/.506 in his breakout campaign, where he was also named the lone representative for the rebuilding Sox at the All-Star Game. 

Now the question centers on whether GM Rick Hahn, whose phone constantly stays buzzing, sees the 26-year-old as a piece for the future or trade bait. Heading into winter meetings, Hahn reiterated that he would listen to deals involving Garcia and Jose Abreu, especially considering the South Siders are likely still a few years away from seriously competing in the American League. 

With Garcia under club control until 2019 and his value at its peak, now may be the ideal time for Hahn to sell high and stockpile even more prospects for the already talent-rich farm system. The A's currently have four players in MLB Pipeline's Top 100

It may be Avi Time in Oakland.