Sox Drawer: Williams doesn't deny Greinke rumors

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Sox Drawer: Williams doesn't deny Greinke rumors

By now, youve probably heard the red-hot rumor: TheWhite Sox are interested in Brewers pitcher Zack Greinke. Kenny Williams has already traded for third baseman KevinYoukilis and reliever Brett Myers. Doesthe White Sox GM have the green light to pull off another trade of suchmagnitude? The answer not only appears to be yes, but according toWilliams, hes not stopping there.I think its safe to say if theres been an impactperson out there that can help this club, weve made that phone call, Williamssaid Tuesday in an interview with Comcast SportsNet. Youd be surprised at some of the phonecalls weve made.He didnt offer up any names, so youll have to use yourimagination. However, when I mentionedGreinke, as well as Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster, and whether he made phone callsinquiring about them, Williams didn't avoid the answer.You wouldnt be off base, Williams said. I cant deny any rumors. You havent heard me deny any rumors unlessits something that I feel is going to take away from the focus of one of ourguys, and then I might come out and say, No, so-and-so is safe. Were notlooking down that road.Williams never came to the defense of any of the pitchersin his rotation. Feel free to draw yourown conclusions.Pressing him a little further, I said to Williams, Itsounds to me like youre going after Greinke.Looking at my notebook, he replied light-heartedly, Itsounds to me like there are other questions on that pad.To make a trade for a front-line starter, Williams coulddeal a player from his current roster, or dig into the White Sox farm systemthat has been panned by critics, but has proven to be much better thanpreviously thought with so many pitchers coming up and succeeding at the majorleague level.Does Williams feel a sense of redemption?Well yeah. Id be lying if I said otherwise, Williamsadmitted. I looked up last week or theweek before and we had nine rookie pitchers, forget about position players, rookiepitchers on darn nearly half the team. Theyre learning on the fly, gettingtheir major league shoes underneath them and theyve done an admirable job. Allwere requiring them is to go out there and be aggressive and do theirbest. So far, were in a good positionto contend for a division and build. When you have that many young players, you have a foundation to build. Alittle bit of rebuilding at the same time were in contention, its a goodplace to be.Not as good as first place, where the White Sox wereperched from June 24th until last Saturday when the Tigers took over the topspot. But Williams isnt losing sleepover it.Theyll have another bad stretch, he said about theTigers. Just like weve gone through a bad stretch here. Its all timing. Wecaught them when they were their hottest and we were at our coldest. But Idont think the Tigers think were going away.When it comes to making trades, neither is Kenny.

White Sox agree to one-year deals with Brett Lawrie, Avisail Garcia

White Sox agree to one-year deals with Brett Lawrie, Avisail Garcia

Brett Lawrie and Avisail Garcia will both return to the White Sox in 2017.

The team announced it reached deals with both players shortly before Friday’s 7 p.m. CST nontender deadline. Lawrie will earn $3.5 million next season and Garcia received a one-year deal for $3 million.

The club didn’t tender a contract to right-handed pitcher Blake Smith, which leaves its 40-man roster at 38.

Acquired last December for a pair of minor leaguers, Lawrie hit .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs, 22 doubles and 36 RBIs in 94 games before he suffered a season-ending injury.

Lawrie produced 0.9 f-WAR when he suffered what then-manager Robin Ventura described a “tricky” injury on July 21. Despite numerous tests and a lengthy rehab, Lawrie never returned to the field and was frustrated by the experience. Last month, Lawrie tweeted that he believes the cause of his injury was wearing orthotics for the first time in his career.

He was projected to earn $5.1 million, according to MLBTraderumors.com and earned $4.125 million in 2016.

Garcia hit .245/.307/.385 with 12 homers and 51 RBIs in 453 plate appearances over 120 games. The projected salary for Garcia, arb-eligible for the first time, was $3.4 million.

The team also offered contracts to Miguel Gonzalez and Todd Frazier, who are eligible for free agency in 2018, first baseman Jose Abreu and relievers Dan Jennings, Zach Putnam and Jake Petricka, among others.

The White Sox have until mid-January to reach an agreement with their arbitration-eligible players. If they haven’t, both sides submit figures for arbitration cases, which are then heard throughout February.

White Sox announcer Jason Benetti cracks Crain's 40 under 40

White Sox announcer Jason Benetti cracks Crain's 40 under 40

Crain's Chicago Business released its latest 40 under 40 project and White Sox announcer Jason Benetti made this year's list.

The 33-year-old just finished his first season with the White Sox as play-by-play announcer, working the home games at U.S. Cellular Field (before it was renamed Guaranteed Rate Field last month) alongside Steve Stone as longtime broadcaster Hawk Harrelson saw his workload reduced to mostly road games.

Benetti quickly became a fan favorite among Chicagoans on CSN and other networks in 2016 and his cerebral palsy became more of a backstory, with his work alongside Stone and his affable sense of humor taking center stage instead.

Among other topics, Benetti discussed how he approaches his job of broadcasting for the team he grew up rooting for:

Law school taught me that there are always two sides of the argument. I see it from the Sox prism, but I can’t believe in my heart of hearts that, if the Sox lose, the world’s over anymore. That first game, I was like, “All right, it’s just a game.” And then Avi Garcia hits a homer late in the game against the Indians and I call it like I would call it with a little more. And as the ball cleared the fence, when it was rolling around, I got a slight tear in my eye. And I was like, “What’s that?”

Check out the entire interview with Benetti and the full list at ChicagoBusiness.com.