Brody Frazier

How White Sox aggressive deadline strategy paid off in Anthony Swarzak trade

How White Sox aggressive deadline strategy paid off in Anthony Swarzak trade

The White Sox jumped out ahead of a crowded reliever market once again and traded Anthony Swarzak to the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night.

The White Sox acquired 25-year-old outfielder Ryan Cordell from the Brewers in exchange for the veteran reliever, a baseball source confirmed. The No. 17 prospect in the Brewers farm system, Cordell was hitting .284/.349/.506 with 10 home runs and 45 RBIs in 292 plate appearances at Triple-A Colorado Springs this season.

A nonroster invitee to big league camp this spring, Swarzak was 4-3 with a 2.23 ERA, one save and 52 strikeouts in 48 1/3 innings this season. He’s the third reliever the White Sox have traded since the second half began as they also dealt David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle to the New York Yankees with Todd Frazier on July 18.

TA free agent after the season, Swarzak has fared extremely well in high-leverage situations, stranding 26 of the 35 runners he had inherited. He pitched in two high-leverage spots in the team’s previous two games, earning his first career save Monday. Swarzak, whose 9.68 strikeouts per nine is a career high, also earned a hold on Sunday in Kansas City.

“I’ve been waiting for that opportunity for a long time,” Swarzak said of Monday’s save. “It’s nice that I went in there and got it done. You think about that moment for years and then it finally happens. You just are trying to take a step back and reflect on what just happened, and I’ll be able to come in tomorrow and be ready to go.”

Two American League scouts said Monday that Swarzak still had good trade value even though he’s viewed as a rental. While he wouldn’t likely net the White Sox a top-150 prospect, they could wrangle a “good” minor-leaguer in a deal. One element that could have potentially derailed the White Sox was an abundance of strong relief options in the market, perhaps as many as 20 pitchers.

[MORE: Carlos Rodon frustrated again after a weird start

After the White Sox traded Robertson and Kahnle, general manager Rick Hahn indicated they moved the pair early in anticipation of a competitive marketplace when they acquired Blake Rutherford and others from the New York Yankees. The Baltimore Orioles are a team that could have wreaked havoc on the relief market if they decide to sell -- something one AL source said they’ve gone back and forth on every day -- because they could flood it with Zach Britton and others.

The move is the third made by the White Sox in a span of two weeks, including the trade of Jose Quintana to the Cubs on July 13. The White Sox still have several veterans on the roster who could draw trade interest, including starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez.

“We are still open for business,” Hahn said last week.

Today’s Knuckleball’s Jon Heyman first reported the deal that sent Swarzak to the Brewers. Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal initially reported the teams’ were discussing a trade for Swarzak.

71 Days To Kickoff: Johnsburg


71 Days To Kickoff: Johnsburg preps reporter "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran spotlights 100 high school football teams in 100 days. The first 75 team profiles will focus on teams making strides across Chicagoland and elsewhere in the state. Starting Jul. 31, we'll unveil the @CSNPreps Top 25 Power Rankings, leading up to kickoff on Friday, Aug. 25.

School: Johnsburg

Head Coach: Dan DeBoeuf

Assistant Coaches:  Sam Lesniak (DC), Sean Stochl (ST), John Ridley (QBs), Namon Johnson (DL/Strength and Conditioning), Craig Sincora (RBs), Hank Hartwig (DBs), Wes Peete (WRs/DBs)

How they fared in 2016: 13-1 (6-0 Kishwaukee River Conference), made the 4A state title game and lost to Rochester.

[MORE: 72 Days To Kickoff: De La Salle]

2017 Regular Season Schedule:

Aug. 25 - @ Plano

Sept. 1 - vs. Rochelle

Sept. 8 - vs. Richmond Burton

Sept. 15 - @ Stillman Valley

Sept. 22 - @ Burlington Central

Sept. 29 - @ Woodstock North

Oct. 6 -  vs. Woodstock

Oct. 13 - vs. Harvard

Oct. 20 - @ Marengo

Biggest storyline: Can the Skyhawks keep the state title wagon train rolling again in 2017?

Names to watch this season: Senior QB/DB/K Adam Jayco, Senior WR Brody Frazier, Senior WR/DB Nico LoDolce

Biggest holes to fill: The Skyhawks will need to replace one of the program's top all time players, as RB Alex Peete graduated and moved on to UW Whitewater.

EDGY's Early Take: The Skyhawks had a terrific run last season. I expect the Skyhawks to be a factor once again in the northern part of the 4A state playoff bracket.