Well, the White Sox are only a handful of games back, but this season is over as far as I am concerned. This team is lifeless, and it is so unfortunate. 2005 looks like a distant memory right now. There are a lot of things to look forward to for this team, and I really think a few moves should be made before the July 31st trade deadline. This might be a little premature, but it is really hard not to get down on this team after watching them lose 10 of their last 13 games.
1. Trade Big Contracts (if possible). Thome definitely will not be traded, he is aging and cannot be moved to half of the league, because he is now primarily a DH. Jermaine Dye probably has the most trade value of all right now. He does have a big salary this year, so that will be hard to move as well. He is younger than Thome, and can still play the outfield. Paul Konerko probably has similar value to Dye, even though he plays 1st base. He also has one year left on his contract, which will be valuable to trade suitors.
2. Get core players back to 2008 form. This team was successful because of the play of four young guns. Gavin Floyd, John Danks, Carlos Quentin and Alexei Ramirez. All of these guys need to perform in order for this team to be successful. It is no longer 2005, and as much as it pains me to say, we need to move on. Quentin is battling injuries this year, Ramirez is starting to heat up, Danks and Floyd have been sporadic. Floyd just needs to cut down on his walks, and Danks needs to get ahead and not throw as many pitches.
3. Decide Rotation for the future. This seems a little obvious. Colon and Contreras will be gone after this year, so that leaves 2 vacant spots. We want to count on Danks and Floyd, but these guys have to do the above. They need to decide who those last spots will be, via free agency or their own minor league system (Poreda, Whisler, Marquez(hurt)) to name a few. Starting pitching and defense win championships.
4. Have Gordon Beckham, Dayan Vicedio and Jordan Danks in 2010 opening day lineup. These guys are both tearing up the minor leagues, and as much as I want to see them up in 2009, I think it is better for them to stay in the minors and learn the game that way, rather than be thrust into a situation around a lifeless team. Jordan Danks will solve the CF problems, and Beckham can play 2B or SS, it all depends on what Ramirez does. Chris Getz is a nice player, but he doesn't look like more than a middle of the road player. Dayan is the Cuban Pimp, and is in the same situation. He can play a corner OF spot, 3B, 1B, or even DH. I am done with the Josh Fields and Brent Lillibridge experiments, so I woudln't mind if these guys were moved either.
5. Find out what Jayson Nix has. This guy has done everything Ozzie has asked, so I want to see him in the lineup everyday, whether is is second, third, or short. Hell, put him at first. I would also keep Brian Anderson up for his defense, depending on where depends who else is up (Danks, Viciedo, ETC). Bring up Tyler Flowers only if he will play everyday :C, 1B or DH.
6. Keep a few veterans around. This team can't go all young, even though it has worked (see Rays 2008). I would keep a few vets around Buehrle, Pierzynski, Jenks and Konerko(if not traded). These guys all have been there. I don't need Konerko, Dye, and Thome. This isn't 16 inch softball! Br
Well, that is about all I have right now. I hope I am wrong, and many of my suggestions may seem a bit off, but it is what I want to see. Again, I hope I am way off and the White Sox end up going on a huge win streak. I have seen stranger things happen...(see 2005)