The White Sox were left disappointed on Tuesday when Manny Machado agreed to a deal with the Padres, but it does not sound like their offer was as superior to San Diego’s as they are making it seem.
Machado has reportedly agreed to a 10-year, $300 million contract with the Padres. According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, Chicago offered Machado an eight-year, $250 million deal. The offer also included incentives.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 19, 2019
While the average annual value of Chicago’s reported offer is higher than what Machado will get from the Padres, his deal also includes an opt-out after the fifth season. That means the total guaranteed dollar amount is more than what the White Sox offered, plus Machado has the option of hitting free agency again when he’s still in his prime at age 31.
Judging by the way one White Sox executive reacted to the Machado deal, it seems like Chicago did not realize how serious the Padres were in their pursuit of the free agent slugger. If that’s true, they weren’t alone in that line of thinking.
The San Diego Padres and Manny Machado reached an agreement Tuesday on a massive 10-year contract, and at least one team appears to be extremely disappointed about missing out on the free agent slugger.
Shortly after word surfaced that Machado will sign a 10-year, $300 million deal with the Padres, Chicago White Sox executive vice president Kenny Williams said he thought his team had the highest outstanding offer for the 26-year-old. Williams admitted he is in “shock.”
Kenny Williams said White Sox felt they were the high offer on the table
“I’m wearing my shades so you can’t see the shock in my eyes”
— James Fegan (@JRFegan) February 19, 2019
The White Sox were reportedly considered a “strong factor” in the Machado sweepstakes as of Monday night, but that may have just forced the Padres to up their offer. While many people felt San Diego was only considering signing Machado because the price had seemingly dropped in what has been another quiet free agency, they were clearly serious from the start.
It’s also possible that Machado preferred San Diego over Chicago and took less money to sign with the Padres.
If they want to land a big prize, the White Sox can now turn their attention toward Bryce Harper. However, all signs continue to point to him ending up with another team.
The San Diego Padres are expected to meet with Bryce Harper this week, and they are apparently planning to do more than just kick the tires on the free agent outfielder.
Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports that there is an “overwhelming likelihood” Harper will sign with one of four teams, and the Padres are among them. The other three are the Washington Nationals, Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago White Sox.
Bryce Harper has four active suitors as February nears, source confirms: #Nationals, #Phillies, #WhiteSox, and now #Padres. At least one other team remains involved on periphery, but overwhelming likelihood is he will sign with one of those four clubs. @MLB @MLBNetwork
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 31, 2019
The Padres are the big surprise, as they typically would not be in on a free agent who is expected to command somewhere in the neighborhood of $300 million. They had the seventh-lowest payroll in baseball last season at just over $100 million, which means Harper would account for somewhere in the neighborhood of 20-30 percent of all of their player salaries combined.
That said, the Padres have a number of players on their roster who are under team control for years to come. It would take a lot to turn things around from their 66-win season in 2018, but perhaps they are willing to spend to make that happen. Harper is a Scott Boras client, and history tells us that means he will sign with the highest bidder. Considering they are also reportedly taking a close look at Manny Machado, it’s possible the Padres are willing to be that team.
The reports about Harper have been all over the place, though one team has seemed like the favorite for quite some time now. While it would still be a huge surprise if he signed with the Padres, the possibility is apparently a legitimate one.
It’s no secret that the Chicago White Sox are interested in Manny Machado, and some of the team’s players were happy to take up the recruiting pitch at the team’s fanfest.
White Sox first baseman Yonder Alonso — who also happens to be Machado’s brother-in-law — FaceTimed Machado during the opening ceremonies of SoxFest on Friday and joined Yoan Moncada and Jose Abreu in making a pitch for the star infielder to come play in Chicago.
Alonso FaceTimed Machado during #SoxFest2019 opening ceremonies w/Abreu & Moncada. Yoan says at seminar they told him how much they wanted him & need him. Machado was getting ready to play golf. Added we’d like you here & if you can make that happen, we’d be glad. #WhiteSox
— Ryan McGuffey (@RyanMcGuffey) January 27, 2019
There has been some speculation that the White Sox acquired Alonso to try to sweeten the pot for Machado. They certainly can’t have any complaints about his recruiting efforts, though it doesn’t seem that Machado is close to finding a landing place at this time.
The Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago White Sox are among the teams pursuing Manny Machado in free agency, but both teams have a backup plan in mind if they don’t land the former Baltimore Orioles infielder.
According to MLB.com’s Jon Morosi, both Philly and the White Sox view Mike Moustakas as a backup option if they can’t sign Machado. Moustakas is represented by agent Scott Boras, who also counts Bryce Harper as a client, making it easy for both teams to keep in touch about Moustakas.
Moustakas was seeking a multi-year deal last year, but one to his liking never materialized, so he signed a two-year deal with the Royals that included an option for 2019. Moustakas was traded to Milwaukee during the season, and he turned down his 2019 option to become a free agent for the second straight year.
After making just $5.5 million last season — a disappointment for him — Moustakas is looking for more. The 30-year-old third baseman batted .251 with 28 homers and 33 doubles last season and had a .774 OPS.
The Chicago White Sox are waiting to see whether they will be able to sign Manny Machado or Bryce Harper to a massive contract this offseason, and they made a move to bolster their bullpen in the meantime on Monday.
According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the White Sox have signed reliever Kelvin Herrera to a two-year deal with a vesting option for a third year.
Reliever Kelvin Herrera and the Chicago White Sox are in agreement on a two-year, $18 million deal with a vesting third-year option, sources tell ESPN.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 7, 2019
Herrera dealt with a shoulder injury and a foot injury last season that limited him to just 21 appearances after he was traded to the Washington Nationals in mid-June. He had a 1.05 ERA in 27 appearances with the Kansas City Royals prior to the trade, and his career 2.82 ERA reflects how he has been dominant for stretches in recent years.
While injuries are obviously a concern, Herrera will only be 29 on Opening Day. He should be one of the more solid relievers in baseball if healthy to start the year.
The list of potential suitors for Manny Machado and Bryce Harper seems to have dwindled a bit, and the bidding war for the latter may be a two-team race at this point.
While the Washington Nationals have indicated they do not expect Harper to be back with the team next season, it’s hard to separate truth from posturing at this point in the MLB offseason. On Thursday, a report — one that may have very well been planted by Harper’s agent Scott Boras — claimed the Nationals are still trying to re-sign Harper and have offered him well over $300 million. Jon Heyman of Fancred Sports said Friday that the Nats are genuinely interested in retaining Harper, and the Philadelphia Phillies are also strongly in the mix.
phillies are in process of setting up a face to face meeting with bryce harper, as @JSalisburyNBCS 1st reported. rival nats are obviously interested in retaining harper. chisox seem like a long shot for harper at moment, but mystery team(s) always possible.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 4, 2019
Rival teams supposedly believe the Phillies are prepared to make the biggest offers for both Harper and Machado, so it would be a surprise if they don’t end up with one of the two star free agents. The Chicago White Sox, who were believed to be suitors for both, seem unwilling to offer the number of years each slugger will be seeking.
Most assume Machado will sign with the New York Yankees, so that takes them out of the running for Harper. As Heyman mentioned, a surprise team (perhaps one from the West Coast?) can always emerge, but it seems like the Phillies and Nationals are competing to land Harper.