Now it is up to general manager Rick Hahn to find a realistic way to fill out the active roster with players who will help the White Sox return to competitiveness without putting the team in a restrictive financial position as his predecessor was wont to do.
It will not be easy.
With several holes to address, it will be imperative for Hahn to make wise decisions this offseason. Consider that there could be as many as three spots in the White Sox bullpen that need to be filled, there is more than one question mark in the outfield, they desperately need a catcher and their infield is among the worst in MLB.
As it stands, they have roughly $48 million in salaries committed to five players plus Matt Lindstrom’s buyout on the books for the 2014 season pending arbitration, per CotsContracts.com. And if the White Sox fill out their roster with players who earn the league minimum, as Colintj from SouthSideSox.com noted, their payroll will be in the neighborhood of $65 million.
Realistic with be the operative word here. That means that Shin-Soo Choo, Jacoby Ellsbury, Robinson Cano, or any of the other high-profile free agent position players will not be discussed.
Almost exclusively, this conversation will revolve around the current 25-man roster. Specifically, the type of moves Hahn can make via trade, attrition or with the batting order to improve the team next year.
Beginning with the lineup, here are six realistic moves for Hahn and the White Sox.
Unless otherwise noted, all advanced and general statistics are courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com.