DETROIT -- Ever unpredictable at the trade deadline, White Sox general manager Kenny Williams said Saturday he remains open to more deals after the team acquired Brett Myers from the Houston Astros.
But Williams also feels his team, which entered play Saturday with a half-game lead over the Detroit Tigers, will be re-energized by the return of Gavin Floyd on Monday and potentially John Danks down the road.
Ten days before the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline, the White Sox also activated veteran reliever Jesse Crain off the disabled list on Saturday. His addition along with Myers instantly gives the bullpen more experience.
We feel like here as the deadline approach, in essence, we are going to make a trade for Myers and Jesse Crain and Gavin Floyd and John Danks soon, Williams said. With that, it will be nice if we can play at full strength with additions throughout. But I still have some minutes left on my phone. I may as well use them as we continue to be creative and improve the club if possible.
The healthy return of Danks would be a significant boost to the teams rotation. Over the last week, Danks, who has been on the disabled list since May 20 with a left shoulder strain, has made several strides in the right direction. Philip Humber just returned to the rotation and Gavin Floyd will start Monday, manager Robin Ventura said on Saturday morning. Asked Friday when Danks might throw off the mound, however, Ventura said he wasnt sure.
Williams knows Danks status remains complicated.
"Thats tricky, to a large degree, Williams said. A healthy John Danks is the perfect medicine. We are comfortable and confident in that, and weve got very encouraging signs over the last number of days. So, theres less of a reason to do something along those lines. But we have to play it out."
27-year-old Justin Jirschele made quite an impression in his first season as manager of the White Sox Class-A affiliate in Kannapolis. He helped lead the Intimidators to the South Atlantic League championship, and was named White Sox Minor League Coach of the Year. Jirschele came on the podcast to speak with Chuck Garfien about how he went from playing minor league baseball with the White Sox to coaching in their system. He talks about how growing up with a dad who was coaching minor league baseball helped mold him as a manager who is wise beyond his years. Jirschele also gives a report on some of the top White Sox prospects he managed last season such as Jake Burger, Alec Hansen, Dane Dunning and Miker Adolfo.
The White Sox farm system is baseball's best, according to one of the people making those rankings.
In the wake of Major League Baseball's punishment of the Atlanta Braves for breaking rules regarding the signing of international players — which included the removal of 12 illegally signed prospects from the Braves' organization — MLB.com's Jim Callis tweeted out his updated top 10, and the White Sox are back in first place.
Now obviously there are circumstances that weakened the Braves' system, allowing the White Sox to look stronger by comparison. But this is still an impressive thing considering that three of the White Sox highest-rated prospects from the past year are now full-time big leaguers.
Yoan Moncada used to be baseball's No. 1 prospect, and pitchers Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez weren't too far behind. That trio helped bolster the highly ranked White Sox system. Without them, despite plenty of other highly touted prospects, common sense would say that the White Sox would slide down the rankings.
But the White Sox still being capable of having baseball's top-ranked system is a testament to the organizational depth Rick Hahn has built in such a short period of time.
While prospect rankings are sure to be refreshed throughout the offseason, here's how MLB Pipeline's rankings look right now in regards to the White Sox:
4. Eloy Jimenez
9. Michael Kopech
22. Luis Robert
39. Blake Rutherford
57. Dylan Cease
90. Alec Hansen