Gavin Floyd is among the Chicago White Sox players talked about amidst the possible trades Kenny Williams might pull in the offseason. While John Danks and Carlos Quentin might bring more interest because of their numbers, Floyd brings value to the table. Giving up starting pitchers isn't the happiest thought for White Sox fans, but Williams needs to find new blood for the farm system.
Two possible suitors are the Boston Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles. The Red Sox seem to be more open suitors than the Orioles. According to the Boston Globe, Red Sox general manager Ben Cherrington talked with the White Sox about Floyd, as well as Danks. Whether Floyd would be a fall-back option for option for the Red Sox if Williams sets the price too high for Danks is unclear.
Regarding the Orioles, general manager Dan Duquette has set up perameters for possible deals. According to the Baltimore Sun, Duquette, who has spoken with Williams several times regarding Floyd and other trade targets, is interested in pitching but doesn't want to give up pitching.
"My goal is to add to the pitching staff," Duquette said. "And if I'm adding to the pitching staff while at the same time giving away young pitchers, then I don't know that I am accomplishing too much for the Orioles."
That would mean that unless Williams can effectively persuade Duquette to give up pitching prospects, he would probably have to go for a prospects who could produce runs, which the White Sox need. While asking for Dylan or Bobby Bundy in return for Floyd would probably be too much, Williams might want to try for right-hander Parker Bridwell.
Bridwell has a good selection of pitches, including a fastball, slider, changeup and curveball. His fastball falls in the 88 to 93 miles per hour range, according to Fangraphs. While Bridwell posted a 5.28 earned run average for Low-A Aberdeen and Single-A Delmarva in 2011, his 2.00 strikeout-to-walk ratio, as well as his 8.4 strikeouts per nine innings, are promising.
Forget the earned run average, which can often be blamed on poor minor league fielding. The latter two figures are more important. Also, the fact that he appeared in Orioles 2011 spring training is a good sign.
FanGraphs projects Bidwell to be a middle of the rotation starter.
If getting a pitcher from the Orioles is too much of a hassle for Williams, then he could just go for a young hitter for the White Sox. Adam Jones is a promising young hitter. Jones hit 25 home runs and posted a .785 on-base-plus-slugging rate in 2011. That would be as good as the White Sox could get in a trade.
The Red Sox might be a better trade partner for Williams simply because of how open Cherrington might be. Boston has a few very nice arms that could help the White Sox.
Anthony Ranaudo is promising, even though he suffered a stress fracture in his elbow a couple of years ago. Ranaudo struck out 117 in 127 innings and walked only 46 across Single-A Greenvile and Single-A-plus Salem. His 3.3 strikeout-to-walk ratio is solid.
Also, 2011 first-round pick Matt Barnes might be good. He struck out 75 batters in 83 innings in his sophomore year at Connecticut.
Trading Floyd might be more manageable for Williams. Teams might like the value for Floyd better than for Danks. Floyd will make $7 million in 2012, and Danks is set to earn $6 million. However, Floyd had a 2.8 wins above replacement mark for $5 million in 2011, compared with Danks' 2.2 wins above replacement for $6 million.
Once again, the White Sox are in the market for prospects. Getting a pitching prospect who could eventually start is key if the White Sox trade Floyd. At best, the White Sox would do well to get someone who could contribute in the future for at the major league level.