The Chicago White Sox and veteran catcher Wellington Castillo have agreed to a deal, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The deal is for two years and includes a club option for the 2020 season. Castillo will earn $15 million and the club option is worth $8 million, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.
Castillo, 30, just finished his best offensive year since he made his debut during the 2010 season. He hit .282/.323/.490 last season with 20 home runs and 53 RBIs in 96 games with the Baltimore Orioles. He had one of the best offensive seasons for a catcher in major league baseball, so it was not a shocker that he was the first catcher to come off the free agency market.
Entering the 2017 season, Castillo had a poor reputation as a catcher. Castillo also turned around his defensive side of the game and his pitch framing numbers unexpectedly improved. He also lead the majors with a 49% caught stealing rate last season. The big question for Castillo entering the 2018 season is seeing if he can maintain his wonderful numbers from the 2017 season. The Orioles used Castillo as their number one catcher last season.
The White Sox who are in desperate need of a starting catcher are the first team this offseason to sign a non-pitcher. The Sox will utilize Castillo as their starting catcher next season. He will be their first reliable starting catcher since Tyler Flowers played in the south side of Chicago in 2015. The Baltimore Orioles declined Castillo's $7 million club option entering this offseason, which is how Castillo ended up on the free agency market.
The Houston Astros and Chicago White Sox have agreed to a deal that will send veteran reliever Tyler Clippard to Houston, per Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal.
The Astros have suddenly bolstered their bullpen, by acquiring the eight-year veteran reliever. Clippard joined the south side of Chicago, from the Bronx, nearly three weeks ago, and is once again packing his bags. The Astros currently sit 72-45, and have a steady 12 game lead over the second place Los Angeles Angels for first place in the American League West division.
Clippard, 32, has had his ups and downs this season with the White Sox and Yankees. In 51 relief appearances, Clippard has a record of 2-6, with a 4.27 ERA. The two-time all-star has an impressive 10.5 K/9 ratio, this season.
Clippard will elect free agency this offseason.
The White Sox will receive a player to be named later or cash considerations.
The Kansas City Royals and the Chicago White Sox have agreed to a trade that will send outfielder Melky Cabrera to the Midwest and pitchers AJ Puckett, Andre Davis to the Windy City.
Cabrera, 32, is putting together a nice season for himself. He is batting .295 with 13 HRs and 56 RBIs. The Whitesox have been in sell mode for a while now. They have the best farm system in baseball and it's somehow getting better.
Puckett, 22, is the Royals' #13 ranked prospect in their system. In High-A this year, he owns a 9-7 record with a 3.90 ERA.
Davis, 23, has played all year in Low-A in the Royals' system. He owns a 5-4 record and an ERA of 4.83.
The Whitesox will be taking the majority of Cabrera's contract for the rest of the season
The New York Yankees and the Chicago White Sox are close to agreeing to a blockbuster trade that will send infielder Todd Frazier and relievers David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle to the Big Apple. The White Sox will add veteran reliever Tyler Clippard, prospects Blake Rutherford and Ian Clarkin. Bruce Levine of 670 The Score was first to report the deal was close.
Todd Frazier, 31, will most likely start over Chase Headley at the third base position for the Yankees. The two-time all-star is not having his best season this year. He is batting .207 with 16 HRs and 44 RBIs. Frazier is most likely a rental for the Yankees, as he will be a free agent at the season's end.
Robertson, 32, is a former Yankee. He will join a dominant bullpen featuring flame throwers Aroldis Chapman and Dellin Betances. It is unclear what Robertson's role will be, but it is safe to assume he will have a late inning position. This year Robertson has a 2.70 ERA and 13 saves.
Kahnle, 27, is having his best season of his four year career. He owns an ERA of 2.50 this season. Multiple teams were interested in him because of his dominant numbers out of the bullpen and the fact that he will not be a free agent until after the 2020 season.
Rutherford, 20, is currently playing low-A baseball. Many scouts and reporters claim the young outfielder is "prized" and could be a superstar in the future with the White Sox. In 274 at-bats in Low-A Charleston, Rutherford has a batting average of .281, with 2 HRs, 30 RBIs, and 20 doubles.
Clarkin, 22, is currently pitching for the High-A Tampa Yankees. In 13 starts this year, Clarkin has 2.69 ERA and a 4-4 win-loss record.
Clippard, 32, is not having a pretty season with the Yankees this year. The veteran reliever has posted a 4.95 ERA, with a 1-5 record in 40 relief appearances. The White Sox will probably use Clippard as their closer or set up man, now that Robertson and Kahnle are swapping sides with him.
The Chicago Cubs and the Chicago White Sox completed an inter-city blockbuster trade that will send LHP Jose Quintana to the Cubs. The Cubs will send top prospects OF Eloy Jimenez and RHP Dylan Cease to the White Sox, with infielders Bryant Flete and Matt Rose.
The Cubs have played a relatively disappointing season compared to how they played last year when the won their first World Series in 108 years. Today's acquisition shows that the Cubs are looking to have a strong second half of the season in their attempt to reach the postseason. The Cubs are 43-45 and sit in second place in the National League Central, 5.5 games behind the Milwaukee Brewers.
The White Sox entering the trade had a top-five farm system, and now after acquiring the Cubs' top two prospects, they arguably have the best farm system in baseball.
Quintana, 28, is under club control until after the 2020 season. He is 4-8 in 18 starts this season, with an ERA of 4.49. Quintana is a very durable starter, pitching more than 200 innings during the past four seasons.
Jimenez, 20, in 42 games in Low-A Myrtle Beach, is batting .271 with eight home runs and 32 RBIs. Jimenez is the eighth highest ranked prospect in baseball on MLB.com's ranking of the top 100 prospects.
Cease, 21, has a fastball that can reach the high 90's. In High-A South Bend, Cease is 1-2 in 13 starts with a 2.79 ERA. Cease is ranked as MLB.com's 63rd best prospect in baseball.
According to Yahoo's Jeff Passan, the left-handed ace of the Chicago White Sox, Jose Quintana, is drawing trade interest from multiple teams. The teams who are interested in Quintana are the Atlanta Braves, Houston Astros, and Pittsburgh Pirates
Quintana was a hot commodity over the past offseason. With a weak free agent pitching class, the White Sox received phone calls from tons of teams about Quintana and former teammate Chris Sale, whom they traded to the Red Sox during the winter meetings.
Jim Bowden of ESPN reported this morning a trade could happen before opening day, but nothing is close. Bowden also reported that if the Astros were to acquire the young southpaw, the blockbuster deal would have to include top prospects RHP Francis Martes and OF Kyle Tucker.
A deal involving Quintana is a smart move for the three teams reportedly interested in him. Quintana is under team control until after the 2020 season. He is owed $37.85 million until he is eligible to become a free agent. Even though he is owed $37.85 million over the next four seasons, any team that were to pick him up after the 2020 season, will probably need to pay him over $25 million.
Quintana is still very young, entering his age 28 season. He was dominant last season, with an ERA of 3.20 and striking out 181. His great 2016 campaign led him to finish 10th in the American League CY young voting.
The Chicago White Sox and shortstop Tim Anderson agreed to a six-year, $25 million dollar deal. The deal includes two team options, and could turn the deal into a $50.5 million dollar deal over eight seasons. MLB.com's Scott Merkin was the first to report both sides were discussing an extension.
Anderson, 23, was a rookie last season and impressed in his first year in the big leagues. Last season, in 99 games with the White Sox, the young shortstop had a solid slash line of .283/.306/.432 with nine home runs and 30RBIs. His 22 doubles and six triples in 410 at bats, dazzled scouts and front office executives, which led to the six-year extension.
After his appearance in the 2014 Arizona Fall League, Tim Anderson was a player every executive wanted and every reporter knew of. He flourished in Arizona after his first full minor league season. In 99 plate appearances, his .301/.343/.430 slash line censored a light bulb in Chicago's front office.
Chicago knew they had their shortstop of the future, after they selected him in the 2013 draft at 17th overall. Prior to the 2015 season, Anderson was rated the 39th overall prospect by Baseball Prospectus.
Anderson continued to awe scouts and put his name on the board, when he was rated the 19th best prospect in baseball, according to Baseball Prospectus, before the 2016 season.