The 2022 season for the White Sox has been quite the disappointing rollercoaster ride. At the start of the season it seemed as if the White Sox were ready to make a run this year, they had all the pieces a fan would think are necessary to make a world series run. The Sox had a solid rotation led by Lucas Giolito, Lance Lynn and the emergence of Dylan Cease. The bullpen was seen as a strength headed by the three headed monster that is Liam Hendricks, Garret Crochet, and Aaron Bummer. The White-sox lineup was also viewed as one of the best in all of baseball. With guys like Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert, Jose abreu and Tim Anderson playing almost everyday what could go wrong.
Seemingly everything has gone wrong for the Sox this year and while they are within striking distance of a wildcard spot, things aren’t-looking so great on the southside. We can play the blame game all day long but what every fan wants to know is how is the team going to get better and contend for a title next year?
Make signing Andrew Benintendi a priority
This offseason Andrew Benintendi is a free agent. I think he would be a perfect fit for the White Sox. Especially with the decision of what to do with Jose Abreu looming (I will get into that later) signing Benintendi makes all the sense in the world. Benintendi plays gold glove caliber defense which the White Sox desperately need. He is coming off his first all star appearance and probably should have been an all star in prior seasons. Benintendi can do a little bit of everything. He gets on base consistently, will hit a solid amount of RBI’s and will hit for average. He fits like a glove for the Sox.
This is going to hit White Sox fans where it hurts. All good things must come to an end as is the case with Abreu’s relationship with the Sox. Abreu has been one of the most consistent first baseman in all of baseball ever since he came into the MLB. With that being said, Abreu is having another good season and even though he is older, he will likely command more money when he hits the market. He certainly will cost more than Andrew Vaughn who should replace Abreu at first. First base is Vaughns natural position and he has proved he is here to stay. It just makes sense for the White Sox to let Abreu walk financially.
The White Sox need to monitor the whole free agent class as a whole
This upcoming free agent class is absolutely loaded. With Jose Abreu departing possibly the White Sox could have some wiggle room in terms of spending this offseason. The free agent list is headlined by guys like Aaron judge (who will most likely win this year’s AL MVP award), Trea Turner, Carlos Correa, Carlos Rodon, and possibly even MLB superstars Jacob DeGrom and Nolan Arenado. Can you even imagine adding even one of these guys to the White Sox? I think if the White Sox find themselves in a position to add a superstar to the fold, they pull the trigger.
Add another lefty to the bullpen
In a perfect world, adding another left handed pitcher to the White Sox bullpen would not be a priority this offseason. However thus is not the case for Chicago. With Garrett Crochet coming off TJ there’s questions surrounding how he will bounce back. Aaron Bummer has also had his own respective injuries this season. Once these two guys go down who’s left for the Sox? As of right now the White Sox have one lone lefty in the pen. That would be Jake Diekman who has been up and down. The options available by way of free agency for left handed arms are actually pretty solid. Flamethrower Aroldis Chapman will be available though he comes with baggage. Will Smith is available. If Andrew Chaffin opts out of his player option he will be a premier arm available. The options are there for the White Sox. I think adding another lefty to the pen as an insurance policy will be beneficial down the road for the team.
The White Sox rank 24th in terms of total team defensive runs saved and anyone who has watched the Sox this season knows defense is a problem. Whether the issue is guys being put in positions they aren’t familiar with or just ability, the issue needs to be addressed. One inexpensive solution would be bringing on a guy like Jackie Bradley Jr. JBJ is a UFA this upcoming offseason and while he may lack with the bat, he is exceptional in the outfield and would bring real value to the White Sox off the bench. Plugging in JBJ late in a game could win an extra game or two for the White Sox. I also recommend taking a flier on Jose iglesias. Same as JBJ he struggles with the bat from time to time but he would bring a slick gloved veteran presence to a young team who struggles with defense. Whoever the White Sox bring in this offseason, the defense needs to be addressed in order for this team to seriously contend for a title.
Make Michael Conforto a White Sox
Michael Conforto is a free agent in the upcoming offseason and I believe he fits perfectly for the White Sox. Before the season started there was interest between the two parties and the media still believes the White Sox should sign him for the rest of the season. Conforto provides a left handed bat with some thump in it especially against righties. Conforto is also a quality fielder and would provide an upgrade over the current options on the roster.
Overall the White Sox don’t need much to contend for a title in 2023. All the big pieces are already there. A very solid rotation and a lineup with potential through the roof. If they just add a few pieces here and there and are willing to open up the ole’ wallet this offseason, they will be atop the AL central and the baseball world in no time.
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