The trade rumors have already begun to trickle in, and a steady stream is expected over the next few weeks.
With the White Sox starting Friday 10 games out of first place in the American League Central and 7 1/2 back in the wild card, the next three-plus weeks should be interesting at the corner of 35th and Shields.
Not only do the White Sox have several intriguing trade candidates on their roster, but their general manager has gone on record as saying their reshaping process isn’t finalized. While the White Sox have been open to adding players if the situation merited it, their current position would seem to make it easier for Rick Hahn to sell some of his assets to further aid the rebuild.
Even though the White Sox are six games better than they were at this point in 2013, players know a selloff could begin at any time.
“We’ll go on spurts where we play real good and spurts where we’re not playing bad, we’re just not winning games,” veteran Adam Dunn said. “If we can find a way to be more consistent, we wouldn’t be in the situation we’re in right now.
“You go through so much with the team you have, good or bad, and when somebody gets dealt, it's part of the family.”
On Friday morning, an ESPN Boston report yet again linked the Seattle Mariners, who open a three-game set at U.S. Cellular Field on Friday, to White Sox outfielder Dayan Viciedo.
Per the report, the Mariners have considered trading reliever Brandon Maurer and another player for Viciedo, who has also drawn some interest from San Francisco.
Last month, Seattle also was said to be interested in asking about Alexei Ramirez and Dunn, who is a free agent at the end of the season. A New York Post report has indicated that the Yankees have scouted John Danks, who is 4-2 with a 2.65 ERA over his last eight starts.
Other players destined to appear in rumors include second baseman Gordon Beckham and outfielder Alejandro De Aza. Even starting pitcher Jose Quintana, who signed an extension in March, has already been speculated about.
“That becomes part of the game,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “There’s a lot of it that rumors start that aren’t true. Those are the ones that guys get carried away thinking they’re getting traded that it’s not true. You still have to focus on what you’re doing, and that’s part of the job. When guys come in and they start hearing — whether you’re on the team where someone’s going or getting somebody — that means somebody’s going, so it rattles everybody cages if there are too many of them.”
Last season it wasn’t just a plethora of rumors. The White Sox made a bunch of deals as they began their roster overhaul.
The first deal was a July 12 trade of longtime reliever Matt Thornton to the Boston Red Sox. Before they were done, the White Sox had dealt mainstays Jake Peavy, Alex Rios and Jesse Crain.
Players expected those moves then, and they wouldn’t be surprised now, Dunn said.
But having that knowledge doesn’t lessen the blow.
“I don’t think anyone was caught off guard by anyone getting traded last year,” Dunn said. “This time last year, that was all anyone talked about. Not who, but how many. I don’t think it caught anybody off-guard.
“You couldn’t come in here without answering a trade question. There was pretty much only one untouchable (Chris Sale). That made everybody aware they could and possibly will be getting traded.
“I think pretty much everybody understands it’s a business and that kind of stuff happens, but it doesn’t make it any easier.”