White Sox not likely to make a trade
With Deadline approaching, Guillen says no moves in the works
MINNEAPOLIS -- Detroit's trade of veteran catcher Ivan Rodriguez on Wednesday brought the grand total of moves made by the top trio of American League Central leaders to one since the start of July.
Sure, Cleveland moved CC Sabathia to Milwaukee back on July 7 and then sent Casey Blake to the Dodgers. But the Indians are out of playoff contention, barring a minor miracle.
The White Sox, Twins and Tigers have pretty much stood their collective ground with the talent they have in place, an idea that apparently will carry over for the South Siders through the 3 p.m. CT non-waiver Deadline on Thursday.
"Not right now. I just talked to [general manager] Kenny [Williams] a couple of minutes ago and we don't have anything in mind," said White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who spoke briefly to Williams in his office prior to Wednesday's pregame batting practice. "The only moves I expect to be made is when we have [Jose] Contreras, [Joe] Crede and [Scott] Linebrink back in the lineup. Then, we'll be fine."
"No doubt, Kenny is working," White Sox first baseman and team captain Paul Konerko added. "He's not working to get a deal done, but you can rest assured he's on top of everything. He's working on everything from every angle. This year, above any other year here, probably excluding last year because we were out of it, it just doesn't feel like there's anything going on, like there's any moves that are going to happen."
Truth be told, there aren't a great deal of movable pieces in the White Sox lineup for Williams to shift around. The lineup is set, with the emergence of Carlos Quentin in left field and Alexei Ramirez at second base and the return of Joe Crede at third base, as long as center fielder Nick Swisher and Konerko return close to their previous hitting prowess.
As Guillen mentioned, a healthy and fresh Contreras and a healthy Linebrink coming back should serve as a boost to the team comparable to an acquisition. Orlando Cabrera could draw interest from teams in need of a shortstop, like the Dodgers. But that trade basically leaves the White Sox without any sort of leadoff hitter, short of a corresponding move being made.
Simply put, the White Sox offseason maneuvering figures to keep the team in contention for the rest of the 2008 campaign.
"We're built well," Konerko said. "I look at it as far as winning this division. You can look at other moves, the Yankees, Red Sox and Angels, and there are moves that are made. But if you look at our division, you can't tell me we don't have the guys in this clubhouse to win the division. And that's what I focus on.
"It seems like we have the pieces. I really don't know, what do you trade for? What do you get? It seems like ... these questions you're asking usually are asked two weeks ago.
"For the whole big leagues, it seems like it's not as big a deal as it was last year," Konerko added. "It seems dead. Even amongst players, guys didn't even start talking about trades until [Tuesday] as players. And usually, guys sit around three weeks ago and start speculating. There's none of that going around."
Maybe some of the luster and speculation surrounding the deadline has dissipated because big ticket players such as Sabathia and Rich Harden went quick and early. Mark Teixeira also seemed to move fairly quickly to the Angels, once a decision was made on his status.
Of course, there's still part of one day left for trades to be finalized, and Guillen expects more deals on the horizon. They probably don't figure to involve the White Sox.
"We've got one more [day] to make a trade," Guillen said. "It only takes two seconds to decide. To talk about it, it may take two or three days, but I believe we'll see more trades out there. There are people out there that need more help."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.