Analysis White Sox

Are the White Sox Low-Balling Manny Machado?

Reports have come out stating that the White Sox offered Manny Machado a contract that is likely "closer to $200 million." Is that too low of an offer?

With the New Year already four days in, we are getting closer and closer to hearing Manny Machado’s decision on where he will spend most likely the rest of his career.

Every day it feels as if the White Sox chances on acquiring Machado are improving. In the last few days the New York Yankees have signed veteran shortstop Troy Tulowitzki. Tulowitzki would fill the void the Yankees currently have at shortstop with All-Star Didi Gregorius being on the shelf for the majority of next season. This leads to the thought: are the Yankees out of the running for Machado? It was reported that they are still in pursuit, but Jon Heyman recently stated that the Yankees haven’t made an official offer to Machado as of yet. The White Sox, unlike the Yankees, have made an offer.

Earlier today Bob Nightengale from USA Today Sports reported that the White Sox “are more engaged with Manny Machado than Bryce Harper, and have officially made an offer.”

This shouldn’t come off as a big surprise as Machado himself stated that his decision will be coming in the beginning of the New Year, unlike Harper who is harder to get a grasp on when he will be signing. Therefore, Machado should be the main priority. Sox fans have been aware that a contract has been given to Machado, but until today, the specifics weren’t publicly announced. Nightengale recently announced the formal offer that Machado has received, but the terms may surprise you.

The article states “it’s characterized as a serious offer, likely closer to $200 million than $300 million.”

This would be rather strange considering Machado was expecting to be receiving a contract north of $300 million. With the speculation that Jerry Reinsdorf did offer closer to $200 million could mean a few things. One, instead of the 10-year deal we thought was the case, it could instead be a seven or eight-year deal worth around $30-$35 million per year. This would still put Machado in the money per year he was hoping for but ultimately not the $300 million total. Second, the White Sox are yet again being cheap and not offering what this superstar is worth. This hopefully isn’t the case as it has been previously reported that the White Sox are ready to spend big. Lastly, this could be the number that Rick Hahn wanted to give out as a smoke screen to the Phillies and the Yankees.

A smoke screen wouldn’t be farfetched as it appears that Rick Hahn and company have already tried this tactic on a few national reporters. Bruce Levine of 670 the score stated that the Sox would not be offering more than seven years to Harper or Machado. Jeff Passan of ESPN contradicted that statement and reported that they would offer more than seven years.

Regardless, a deal that has 10 or less years worth around $210-$240 million would not get the job done. I still believe it will take a deal close to or above $300 million to complete. The Philadelphia Phillies are willingly ready to throw around “stupid money” at Machado as well as Harper. As for the Yankees, they are the preferred spot for Machado and would be offering right around the same amount per year as the low-ball offer from the Sox. Rick Hahn hasn’t given us a reason not to trust him yet, but a low offer could change White Sox fans minds.

However, I am not looking in too deep at this report. I believe this is used as a smoke screen to avoid knowing the actual specifics. If the White Sox weren’t offering what Manny and his team have been looking for, they would not have a seat at the table, let alone be a favorite to sign him.

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8 comments on “Are the White Sox Low-Balling Manny Machado?

  1. Actually, the 10 years was reported first and debunked by Levine.

  2. Nightengale is a mouth piece for Williams and Reinsdorf. I take anything he say’s seriously. But I do believe any offer made to either Machado or Harper will be low ball offers. When is comes to marquee free agents, Reinsdorf will not commit to money and years needed to do so. In the case of Machado and Harper, I would say no to either. I do not think either player worth what they are seeking.

    • anthonypisarski

      Appreciate the thoughts, thanks for the read! I think both are worth signing, with the money the Sox have you can’t go wrong with either.

  3. If the Sox REALLY want to make a statement that would not only GUARANTEE them a resurgent fan base in Chicago to overtake the Cubs as the city favorite…but also GUARANTEE recognition and relevance on the national, if not international, stage…they should make EVERY EFFORT to sign BOTH. They’ve got the money. Now they gotta get the gonads. The seismic response throughout the WHOLE sports world would be off the Richter scale!

  4. WhiteSox1906

    They need to show the fans and the free agents that the White Sox are serious about winning. They need to make a statement. If not Harper or Machado then Keuchel, Grandal and Moustakas. Gotta get serious.

    • anthonypisarski

      I understand your thoughts, however I don’t think Rick Hahn should sign a free agent just to sign one if he misses out on Machado/Harper. They have to make sense long term, thanks for the read!

  5. I don’t believe the Sox are a favorite so much as just one of three teams who seems genuinely interested. I don’t buy that the Yankees are out because they signed Tulo. He’s a very cheap depth piece until Didi comes back and they win either way. If they sign Machado, they can trade Andujar (and more) for a starting pitcher immediately; if they don’t sign him, they’re still covered at SS. As for the offer itself, I don’t feel 7 years is long enough. It should be 8 years, at least, to take them through their window. Eloy will, provided the White Sox play it smart, be with them for 7 years before FA, but guys like Robert, Dunning, Rutherford, Zavala, and more probably won’t be up until at least 2020, which means 7 years for them, as well as 6 for Kopech at that time. The real problem comes with the opt outs he assumedly wants. That would almost force the Sox to have a healthy salary, say $28M his first four years, the opt out, then a higher amount, like $40M, for the next three years to discourage him from opting out, then $23M his last three years. Unfortunately, he’d be hitting this high salary just as the Sox’ young guys are getting into arbitration, so their payroll could be very high if their prospects live up to their potential.

    Finally, why aren’t more writers mentioning the tax implications of where these players sign? NY has one of the highest state tax rates in the country and California (for Harper) has the highest, plus NYC has a city income tax. The upshot of this is that a $300M deal costs about $20M more in taxes in NYC than it does in Chicago. Philly’s close to Chicago in taxes, but would still cost about $3-4M more.

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