Baseball’s silly season has intensified and Rick Hahn remains ready to strike but no sensible deals have crossed his desk just yet.
The White Sox general manager said earlier this week the amount of hot stove chatter has increased after last week’s GM meetings in Orlando but teams still seem to be feeling each other out.
Hahn has made it clear he’s open to talks about almost anyone on his roster and feels prepared because of the ample time he was afforded to talk to other GMs last season after the White Sox fell out of contention early.
“There’s been a lot of names exchanged,” Hahn said. “A lot of ideas thrown across the board. Not perhaps real good ideas, which is why nothing has taken place on the trade front just yet. I think activity is picking up. GM Meetings is a nice opportunity as it is every year for teams to start getting a little more serious about fits and having more substantive talks with clubs and free agents. We well could have something in the next day or it could take through Orlando when the logjam sort of breaks. ... In terms of the intensity of talks, it has definitely picked up in recent days.”
Hahn is antsy to continue the restructuring already underway with the acquisitions of Avisail Garcia and Jose Abreu. But with a long list of necessary repairs, Hahn knows the reality is he might not be able to accomplish all he hopes to this offseason and therefore shouldn’t make any rash decisions. With four core players who are 26 or younger in Garcia, Abreu, Chris Sale and Jose Quintana, Hahn can afford to be a little more calculated.
“There is a chance we don’t address it exactly the way we want this offseason,” Hahn said last week. “We’ll see how the next two months unfold. You don’t want to force this thing, just for the benefit of winning a couple of extra games in 2014. We want to be able to take a significant step forward that we can maintain for an extended period, and sometimes the opportunity to completely do that isn’t available at a given time. Maybe it will be in the middle of the season or next offseason. It’s trying to keep a longer-term game while at the same time realizing Jerry’s disposition, Kenny’s disposition, my own and what White Sox fans want is we’ve got to get this thing right quickly.”
That doesn’t make it any easier for the team’s players, many of whom know they are available to the highest bidder. Of the club’s players, only Garcia, Abreu, Sale and Quintana are said to be untouchable. That has led to plenty of Internet speculation regarding Hector Santiago, Gordon Beckham, Alexei Ramirez, Alejandro De Aza and Dayan Viciedo among others.
“I don’t take anything too serious,” Santiago said. “You’re going to hear stuff and you don’t know what’s true and what’s not. You don’t know what to expect, but just be ready for whether it’s here or somewhere else.”