So the playoffs have officially begun and for the second year in a row, the White Sox fell short in the end. While the remaining 8 teams have to worry about gunning for the World Series, the White Sox can turn their attention to many of the off season tasks they have this year. These are just a few of the things the White Sox need to take care of this off season.
Task #1: Resign Paul Konerko
While many people say he is old and past his prime, his 39 home run, MVP like season he had this year is proof enough that Konerko can still post big numbers at his age. He has been the captain of the team for years now and to lose him would be a huge blow to the chemistry of the team because there aren’t too many other people qualified to take the role he has. Take into account the small field that U.S. Cellular Field is and Konerko could be guaranteed 20 home runs or more for at least the next couple seasons and that is good production in my eyes. Losing him would be a huge blow to the team so resigning him has to be one of the team’s top priorities.
Task #2: Make A Decision On Bobby Jenks
We all have seen the struggles that Bobby Jenks has had this season and has brought his ability to close into question numerous times. He is up for arbitration this year and is expected to have a more than modest pay raise given to him so this brings up the question of whether he is worth the money or not. Personally, he isn’t worth the money in the slightest and the White Sox are better off getting rid of him or signing him and trading him so they can get something in return. He was a huge part of winning the World Series in 2005 but he just isn’t the same player he was back then. I’d feel much more comfortable with someone like Matt Thornton or J.J. Putz as the closer. Hell, if he doesn’t work out as a starter this year, I’d even be comfortable with Chris Sale taking a shot at closer as well. Regardless of who takes his place, it needs to be bye-bye to Bobby Jenks.
Task #3: Resign A.J. Pierzynski
A.J. is a proven veteran catcher and has huge success here in Chicago. While he is getting up in age and his offensive production is declining, we have no other option at catcher that is proven. While Tyler Flowers is almost ready to play in the majors, he isn’t fully there yet and there is no sense in rushing him when he isn’t ready. We need to resign A.J. for one year and give Flowers one more year to prepare and then bring him up to the majors full time.
Task #4:Resign Matt Thornton
This is going to happen so there isn’t much need to explain it. The White Sox will exercise his option and he will return to the White Sox. I mean he is one of the best, if not the best left handed relief pitcher in the game today so why wouldn’t they resign him?
Task #5: Roster moves
The White Sox clearly showed that they needed a legit DH since losing Jim Thome. Manny Ramirez was supposed to help at the end of the season and that failed and the rotating DH spot was just the most foolish decision the White Sox could have made. There are many options out there in free agency and trades including big names such as Luke Scott, Adam Dunn, Prince Fielder, Carl Crawford, Hideki Matsui, Adam LaRoche, and Bobby Abreu. Any of those players could help the White Sox tremendously so the White Sox need to acquire one of these players if they want to contend with the Twins next year.
So that’s just a taste of what the White Sox need to take care of in the off season. It’s going to be filled with lots of rumors so it will be a fun filled couple of months. Let’s hope that Kenny Williams can pull the trigger on a move or two that can make the White Sox contenders for years to come.