White Sox “Trades” with EVERY TEAM – AL West Edition – 2024

A long time ago, I was listening to an interview with legendary poker professional Phil Ivey and the interviewer asked the question (paraphrasing) How would you recommend a player learning the game get better the fastest? Phil said something to the effect of (paraphrasing) Buy in to a game at much lower stakes than you would normally play, and then play every single hand for an hour. Try and figure out how you would play all of these different hands in different situations and positions that you are normally taught not to play in. In the spirit of that recommendation from an all-time great, Chorizy and I are once again going to undertake the exercise of making a White Sox trade with every team in the majors…..this is the AL West Edition.

The Au Jus

Texas Rangers

White Sox send: Gregory Santos
White Sox receive: Cameron Cauley
Rationale: The Rangers just won the World Series, but I think all of us (including Rangers fans) felt like the bullpen was shaky. I wouldn’t expect Santos to push Jose Leclerc out of the role, but he is in the last year of his contract. Additionally, they sought help from Aroldis Chapman, but he’s now a free agent. So adding Santos, who doesn’t hit arbitration until 2026, makes a lot of sense.

With Corey Seager and Marcus Semien signed until they’re 60, third base occupied, and Justin Foscue being major league ready, Cameron Cauley starts to be an option to go elsewhere to improve a team that is trying to repeat. Reading about his great defense at SS and power bat, I started to wonder if Santos is enough and also why he sits outside the top 10 in Rangers 2023 farm rankings. But then I see his 30% K rate and feel like this makes more sense than initially thought.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

White Sox send: Gavin Sheets OF / 1B (whatever)
White Sox receive: Jo Adell OF
Rationale: These are two guys on their last chances. Adell is out of options, the former prospect has been downright terrible in the majors, while still hitting quite a bit in AAA. He can glove it enough in RF for the White Sox to give him a Nomar Mazara style stay of execution, with no incumbents really challenging the role. It’s a last gasp, change of scenery situation. Will Adell show up and thrive or will he strike out 40% of the time and have us yearning for Oscar Colas by May 1st, I dunno. But sometimes risks need to be taken.

Picture from the Athletic

Gavin Sheets isn’t really playable for the White Sox. They have a 1st baseman and a Designated Hitter that are locked in their spots. Sheets doesn’t have the athleticism to stand in an outfield position for a serious team, so basically he should go away. The Angels do have a lack of left handed power bats in a park built for left handed power bats. They have DH plate appearances available against right handed pitching, now that Shohei Ohtani has moved out of the way (at least right now before they scoop someone in free agency). It’s probably the only fit I can actually see for a Gavin Sheets trade and as bad as it is, I’d snap call this one.

Houston Astros

White Sox send: Dylan Cease SP
White Sox receive: Brice Matthews SS, Trey Dombroski SP, Kenni Gomez CF
Rationale: There is not a lot the White Sox can offer the Astros, but everyone always wants starting pitching. In Cease, it’s not totally clear which version you’re getting, but he takes the ball every 5 days and he’s gonna ring up about 200 batters. That’s valuable in this era of baseball.

In return, the White Sox get two high risk high reward position players in Matthews and Gomez. And then with Dombroski, you likely have a back of the rotation guy, but if they can get a little Davis Martin magic and add some MPH to his fastball, well then maybe you have more.

This is an unlikely trade as it would further deplete an already depleted farm system in Houston. However, with Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve in the last year of their contracts, it’s very much a “win now” season for the Astros.

Seattle Mariners

White Sox send: Luis Robert OF (Big Dick) & Yoan Moncada 3B
White Sox receive: Henry Ford C, Cole Young 2B, Bryan Woo SP, Bryce Miller SP & Eugenio Suarez 3B
Rationale: Way back in the year of 2018, heading into the 2019 off-season I included a trade of Luis Robert in my SoxMachine Off-Season plan. This lead to a chain reaction that had me making my first appearance on the Pinwheels and Ivy podcast and opening me up to being a guest on many White Sox pods moving forward. The trade was probably not a great one in hindsight, but I thought it made enough sense.

Fast forward to 2023 and Luis has had his first BIG YEAR…

I thought it might be fun to try and trade Robert again. Funnily, the Pinwheels and Ivy podcast gave me an impetus for who I should fashion the trade with as they spoke to a Seattle Mariners blogger about a potential Robert deal and it’s such a coincidence that back in the day, my target for Robert was Eugenio Suarez, so why not make this shit happen, ONE LAST TIME!

The White Sox effectively get 3 top 100 prospects of recent vintage in Henry Ford, Cole Young and Brice Miller (recent graduate) and you get an additional starting pitcher in Bryan Woo. We also get the Mariners to take Moncada’s contract and send back Suarez who was better and cheaper in 2023 than Yoan. I’m not saying I’d be happy at all trading Luis Robert in real life, but the deal would need to look something like this to be even closer to plausible.

Oakland Athletics

White Sox send: Tim Elko 1B/DH
White Sox receive: Aledmys Diaz SS/2B
Rationale: According to Cot’s contracts, the A’s current payroll sits at $32M and Diaz makes up 1/4 of that. In other words, his $8M is their albatross contract. Diaz is a good, but not great fielder who typically hovers in the 90s of WRC+. The Stephen Koren of major league baseball.

In return, we send a guy who can crack the majors with the A’s and could pop off a miracle home run season. I just kinda want to see Elko get a chance to do it and this seems like a spot where he could.

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