Preps Talk

Sox Drawer: Dealing Getz Under Way Early

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Sox Drawer: Dealing Getz Under Way Early

Thursday, November 5

Well, that didnt take long.

Just hours after the Yankees beat the Philles in the World Series, officially marking the end of the 2009 baseball season, the White Sox have reportedly made the first big trade for the 2010 season. The New York Daily News is reporting that the Sox have sent Chris Getz and Josh Fields to Kansas City for Mark Teahen.

But the news might be a little premature. Chris sent me a message at 11:15 a.m. saying that "nothing has been confirmed." At 5:15 p.m., he said that the Sox still hadn't told him anything and called it "an odd situation." Meanwhile, the White Sox are being mum about it, choosing not to confirm or deny the report.

This isnt to say that the deal wont happen. But in our world of lightning-quick technology, rumors of a trade sometimes travel faster than the actual trade itself.

If the report is true, the possibilities are quite intriguing.

First, it immediately opens a hole at second base, leading to speculation as to who might fill it.

The Sox could go the free agent route. Orlando Hudson and Mark DeRosa are available. So is Placido Polanco, who like Teahen has been a White Sox killer over the years. Polanco can hit the ball to all fields, he works the count and rarely strikes out. He also might come relatively cheap. He made 4.6 million a year the last four seasons with the Tigers and is 34 years old.

They could also bring back a certain free agent who can play three infield positions, is one of the best defensive players in White Sox history, and just so happened to record the final out in the 2005 World Series.

Ladies and gentlemen, Juan Uribe. Thoughts?

Of course, the Sox could also make an internal move. Jayson Nix is a possibility. But considering his struggles at the plate last year, and the message Ozzie Guillen sent him and Brent Lillibridge (hit or else), that might be too big of a gamble.

They could also move Gordon Beckham over to second base, or have Gordon play shortstop his natural position and move Alexei Ramirez back to second.

In that scenario, you now have a hole at third base. Chone Figgins anyone? But considering his red-hot demand, its more like Kenny Williams will have to open up the Jerry Reinsdorf vault to get him.

But if there is some money to be spent, heres another free agent candidate: Adrian Beltre.

Hes won the last two American League Gold Glove Awards at third base for the Mariners, but is easily coming off the worst hitting season of his career (eight homers and 44 RBIs in 111 games). True, he made over 13 million each of the last two seasons, which is very much out of the White Sox price range.

But I smell bargain.

The other candidate at third is Teahen himself. He played 107 games at the hot corner last year for the Royals. He also played 32 games in right (good-bye Jermaine Dye?), as well as 11 at first and even three at second.

The man is versatile, and with todays re-signing of the uber-versatile Mark Kotsay, it gives Williams many options with the GM meetings starting next week in Chicago.

If the Teahen deal happens, consider this merely move No. 1. There are plenty more coming. Keep checking back throughout the day. If more news happens, well have it.

High School Lites Week 9 football roundup

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High School Lites Week 9 football roundup

High School Lites featured plenty of great action on Friday night as NBC Sports Chicago had highlights of many of the area's top matchups. Some playoff dreams came to fruition while others crashed and burned. 

Watch tomorrow as the IHSA playoff brackets are revealed tomorrow on NBC Sports Chicago+ at 8 p.m. Be sure to also follow us on Twitter @NBCSPreps for all of the latest IHSA football scores and highlights. 

DRIVE: Prairie Ridge: Episode 10

Wintrust Athlete of the Week: Back of the Yards QB Jeremiah Harris

St. Xavier Team of the Week: De La Salle Meteors

Friday's Top 25 Games

No. 1 Lincoln-Way East 18, No. 19 Bolingbrook 14 

No. 2 Prairie Ridge 55, Dundee-Crown 14

No. 3 Maine South 56, Niles West 9

No. 4 Marist 42, Joliet Catholic 14

No. 5 Lake Zurich , Mundelein

No. 6 Phillips 53, Clark 0

No. 9 Homewood-Flossmoor 50, Sandburg 14

No. 10 Barrington 40, Conant 19

No. 11 Huntley 45, McHenry 7

No. 12 Naperville Central 35, Lake Park 21

No. 13 Hinsdale Central 42, Hinsdale South 14

No. 24 St. Charles North 35, No. 14 Batavia 28

No. 16 Wheaton North 20, Waubonsie Valley 10

No. 17 Crete-Monee 52, Cahokia 8

No. 18 St. Rita 47, Marmion 14

No. 20 Lyons 31, Oak Park-River Forest 14

No. 21 Nazareth 48, Marian Catholic 7

No. 22 Oswego 30, Plainfield Central 0

Mount Carmel 35, No. 23 Providence 34

Other Highlights

Tinley Park 29, Evergreen Park 0

T.F. South 21, Oak Forest 14

Glenbard North 24, Neuqua Valley 14

St. Edward 29, Wheaton Academy 28

Marian Central Catholic 44, St. Patrick 21

Saturday's Top 25 Games

No. 7 Loyola vs. Brother Rice

No. 8 Glenbard West vs. Proviso West

Cubs will be open for business as Theo Epstein weighs trading hitters for pitching

Cubs will be open for business as Theo Epstein weighs trading hitters for pitching

Theo Epstein answered questions from the Chicago media for more than an hour on Friday afternoon at Wrigley Field, but the most interesting part might have been what the Cubs president didn’t say, something along the lines of: These are our guys.

Or at least Epstein didn’t give the same full-throated endorsement of The Core that he delivered after engineering the Jose Quintana trade with the White Sox this summer, getting an All-Star pitcher without giving up anyone from the big-league roster.

Whether it’s the way the Los Angeles Dodgers dominated the Cubs throughout the National League Championship Series that ended Thursday night, the inconsistencies and frustrations during a 43-45 first half of this season or the reality of losing 40 percent of the rotation, you walked out of that stadium club press conference thinking big changes could be coming.

“We’re going to pursue all avenues to get better,” Epstein said.

The Cubs already understood this would be a challenging time to dramatically reshape their pitching staff, with Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta, Big Boy John Lackey and All-Star closer Wade Davis about to become free agents.

The Cubs don’t really have many (any?) high-end, headliner prospects left to trade after borrowing heavily from their farm system to acquire Aroldis Chapman for last year’s World Series run and get Quintana to help solidify the rotation through 2020.

All of Major League Baseball is looking beyond this winter and preparing for the monster free-agent class that will hit the open market after the 2018 season.

Meaning it’s time for the Cubs to make some difficult decisions about all these young hitters they’ve collected.

“It may or may not be,” Epstein said. “Those choices, they’re not unilateral things. You can’t sit there and decide: ‘Hey, this guy, we’re moving him.’ Because you don’t know what the return might be. You don’t know how the different moving parts might fit together.

“I think going into the offseason prepared to make some tough choices and execute on them — and keeping an open mind to anything — is appropriate under the circumstances where we have some obvious deficits and we have some real surplus with talented players who are really desirable.”

Let’s assume All-Star first baseman Anthony Rizzo, MVP third baseman Kris Bryant and catcher Willson Contreras are essentially untouchable.

The Cubs used the ninth overall pick in the 2015 draft on Ian Happ with the explicit idea that the college hitter should be on a fast track and could be flipped for pitching later: Is it time to sell high after the rookie just put up 24 homers and an .842 OPS?

During an exit meeting with Albert Almora Jr., Epstein said he couldn’t promise an everyday job in 2018, though the expectation would be more responsibilities: Think anyone else would be interested in a potential Gold Glove center fielder who’s already playoff-tested?

Do you want Addison Russell or Javier Baez as your everyday shortstop for the next four years? Is there an American League team willing to bet big that Kyle Schwarber will crush 40 homers a year as a designated hitter?

The Cubs have to ask themselves those types of questions, which could mean getting outside of their comfort zone and taking on some riskier pitching investments and sapping the strength that has turned them into the dominant force in the NL Central.

“We’ve really benefitted from having two or three extra — and ‘extra’ in quotes because they’re not really extra — starting-caliber players on the roster,” Epstein said. “That helped us win 97 games in ’15, 103 last year, 92 this year. That’s as big a part of the club as anything.

“Having an Addison Russell go down and being able to move Javy Baez to shortstop — that’s an obvious example of it. But those things show up every week for us. There’s a day where someone can’t make the lineup and someone else slides in and you’re still starting eight quality guys. That’s huge.

“Sooner or later, you reach a point where you have to strongly consider sacrificing some of that depth to address needs elsewhere on the club. There’s no sort of deadline to do that. But I think we’re entering the phase where we have to be really open-minded to that if it makes the overall outlook of the team and organization better.”

Translation: The Cubs are open for business. Make your best offer.