By Kevin Powell
It was a good effort. They had a good run. But after Manny Machado chose Southern California over one of the great baseball towns in America, it’s time for the White Sox to move on.
“I do not want to say this only comes down to money,” general manager Rick Hahn said just hours after the Machado news broke. “That’s disrespectful to players who have worked extremely hard to choose a location in free agency based on whatever they care about most, whatever they prefer. I know that we were aggressive, and I know that our offer was extremely competitive. And I know I’m standing here disappointed that I didn’t get it done.”
Machado’s contract with the Padres is a 10-year, $300 million deal, according to reports.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reported that the Sox offered an 8-year, $250 million dollar deal with nearly $100 million worth of incentives built in.
“The offer that I’m seeing, or the acceptance of the offer that I’m seeing is true, then actually our offer had the opportunity for Manny to surpass that,” Sox Vice President Kenny Williams said.
Did it simply come down to guaranteed money? Maybe. Was it the Padres’ farm system? Maybe. The San Diego weather? Maybe.
Be upset with the front office all you want, but keep in mind the Sox made a serious run and were prepared to spend at least a quarter billion dollars on a player. But there is no second place in free agency.
It was a deflating at Camelback Ranch following the news and Rick Hahn said he was “pissed.” It certainly stings a little more to know that the Sox were so very close and were one of the finalists.
But it’s time to move on and Hahn has already said more moves could be coming with or without Machado.
“We wish him the best,” manager Rick Renteria said. “But everybody in that locker room is preparing to move forward.”
And Machado’s close friend Jon Jay had this to say: “Now we can turn the page. We have our team here. Obviously additions can still be made, but I’m happy with where our roster is now. Guys are here in camp, guys are competing and this is what Chicago White Sox baseball is going to be.”
Kevin Powell covers Chicago baseball for WGN Radio and anchors sports on The Roe Conn Show with Anna Davlantes, M-F/3-7pm. Follow on twitter @kpowell720