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  • Originally posted by FourGoldGloves View Post
    Thinking about where we are and how we got here, yes, the 2016 team was weak, in spite of the three top performers who were liquidated in favor of a massive young talent infusion. But taking a look at the 2021 team, at positions 2-9 there are only two pieces that depended on the rebuild, namely Yoan Moncada and Eloy Jimenez. Most of us think they are stars, maybe superstars of the future, but right now both are question marks. For Moncada, will we get more of 2019 or 2020? For Eloy, can he play LF on a championship team or is he a DH -- a weak position for years now, but one for which the Sox have plenty of future candidates? As for the current stars of the Sox, Abreu and Anderson were here before the tear-down, Eaton is back, Robert and Grandal were signed independently, and Madrigal was drafted. Only 3B and LF depend on the rebuild currently. Could they have been improved without the rebuild? I think if you simply imagine that Fernando Tatis Jr was not given away, we would have a better team 2-9 for 2020 than now.

    Starting pitching is another matter. Only one of the projected 2021 rotation, Dallas Keuchel, came independently of the rebuild, but of course we would still have Sale and Quintana. Arguably, Giolito is better than Sale right now, but it may be close. Quintana could be brought back now and may well be. How much weaker is a rotation of Sale, Quintana (both somewhat weakened 2021 versions of course) Keuchel and two TBDs than the projected 2021 rotation of Giolito, Lynn, Keuchel, Cease, and Kopech? Realistically speaking, both Cease and Kopech are more or less TBD. Are they better than the candidates acquired independently of the rebuild (Crochet, Stiever, Kelley, ...). None of them are likely to be better options in 2021, but going forward who knows?

    The bullpen is totally rebuild-independent.

    My verdict: The Sox are ahead of where they would otherwise be, mainly because more of the pitching pieces are in synch. But it may not be as stark a difference as most of us have perceived.
    If the Sox didn’t go into the rebuild, Sale and Q would be gone by now, and they would not have been in the position to draft Madrigal or Vaughn. They likely would never have invested as much money in Robert as they did to not only bring him here, but also to lock him up long term. It’s impossible to know who they would have brought in had they never decided to tear it down, but if they continued down the same path it would have been a bunch of patchwork additions that tied up payroll and would have made the Grandal and Keuchel addition unlikely.

    We have no idea what the team in 2021 would have looked like had they not changed course, but very few of the moves you mention above as “independent” of the rebuild are likely to have occurred.

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    • Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post

      If the Sox didn’t go into the rebuild, Sale and Q would be gone by now, and they would not have been in the position to draft Madrigal or Vaughn. They likely would never have invested as much money in Robert as they did to not only bring him here, but also to lock him up long term. It’s impossible to know who they would have brought in had they never decided to tear it down, but if they continued down the same path it would have been a bunch of patchwork additions that tied up payroll and would have made the Grandal and Keuchel addition unlikely.

      We have no idea what the team in 2021 would have looked like had they not changed course, but very few of the moves you mention above as “independent” of the rebuild are likely to have occurred.
      Your point is well taken, especially that tanking produced better draft positions. But I really have a hard time believing that removing the three best players from the team and replacing them with prospects (especially prospects other teams were willing to part with) made it more attractive for free agents. And I doubt that the actual course of the rebuild made ownership more likely to spend. Remember, Luis Robert himself constitutes a huge part of the mystique, and he was not acquired in the liquidation sale. I doubt that Reinsdorf was as much influenced by the hype as we fans were, nor were other team GMs and players and their agents. The lion's share of the real value of the rebuild is in the pitching, and that may well be real, mainly in the future. But up to this date the great increase in pitching value is not apparent to me. As I said, it probably will emerge in the future, but as you said, we had and have no way of knowing the future.

      Four Sox Gold Gloves in 1960.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by FourGoldGloves View Post

        Your point is well taken, especially that tanking produced better draft positions. But I really have a hard time believing that removing the three best players from the team and replacing them with prospects (especially prospects other teams were willing to part with) made it more attractive for free agents. And I doubt that the actual course of the rebuild made ownership more likely to spend. Remember, Luis Robert himself constitutes a huge part of the mystique, and he was not acquired in the liquidation sale. I doubt that Reinsdorf was as much influenced by the hype as we fans were, nor were other team GMs and players and their agents. The lion's share of the real value of the rebuild is in the pitching, and that may well be real, mainly in the future. But up to this date the great increase in pitching value is not apparent to me. As I said, it probably will emerge in the future, but as you said, we had and have no way of knowing the future.
        I'm not saying that the tanking team was a more attractive destination, I'm saying that they would not have gone out and made the two largest deals in franchise history if they hadn't cleared out payroll beforehand.

        The rebuild was more than trading away Sale, Eaton, and Quintana. It was also the following 3 years worth of getting rid of every veteran that had any salary impact (other than Abreu) and purposely sucking in order to get a better draft position. I don't think there's any reason to believe Robert, Grandal, or Keuchel would be on this team if they didn't change course.

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        • Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post
          ... I'm saying that they would not have gone out and made the two largest deals in franchise history if they hadn't cleared out payroll beforehand.
          I thought all three were so attractive because they had very team-friendly deals.

          Originally posted by ChiTownTrojan View Post
          The rebuild was more than trading away Sale, Eaton, and Quintana. It was also the following 3 years worth of getting rid of every veteran that had any salary impact (other than Abreu) and purposely sucking in order to get a better draft position. I don't think there's any reason to believe Robert, Grandal, or Keuchel would be on this team if they didn't change course.
          Getting rid of unproductive veterans was not part of what most mean when they refer to the rebuild. That could and would have happened anyway. It is the trading of the three productive stars for prospects that signifies the rebuild. Perhaps Grandal and Keuchel would not have signed on if the rebuild were not over-hyped. But as for changing course, there are innumerable posts on this very board that express the view that nothing has changed in the team "direction". Is cutting salary and trading the pressure to perform now for indefinite future promise a change of direction? And Grandal and Keuchel could certainly see that the ownership and upper management of the team had not changed, so I doubt they were expecting very much change of direction.
          Last edited by FourGoldGloves; 12-12-2020, 02:24 PM.

          Four Sox Gold Gloves in 1960.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by FourGoldGloves View Post
            But taking a look at the 2021 team, at positions 2-9 there are only two pieces that depended on the rebuild, namely Yoan Moncada and Eloy Jimenez. Most of us think they are stars, maybe superstars of the future, but right now both are question marks. For Moncada, will we get more of 2019 or 2020? For Eloy, can he play LF on a championship team or is he a DH -- a weak position for years now, but one for which the Sox have plenty of future candidates?
            "Think" they are stars? I'm sorry but these kids have already shown that they are stars. You can't seriously think that a 24 year old Moncada had a fluke season in 2019 after tearing up the minor leagues and being the #1 prospect in baseball? Eloy can easily play LF for a championship team, especially with the way he hits the ball. Left field isn't exactly a premium defensive position, go look at the past few championship left fielders. You will not be "wowed" by defense in that group and not many of them can match the offensive production of Eloy.

            My verdict: The Sox are ahead of where they would otherwise be, mainly because more of the pitching pieces are in synch. But it may not be as stark a difference as most of us have perceived.
            So imagine if the White Sox had stubbornly decided to keep Sale, Quintana and Eaton. Where would they be right now? Sale is injured, Quintana is struggling and Eaton......is back anyway. You would not have Moncada, Eloy, Robert, Giolito, Lynn, Madrigal, Vaughn, nor Crochet in all likelihood. I cannot see how a team like the White Sox that does not dole out $300 million contracts, nor pick steals in the middle of the first round of the draft would be in a better place.

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