Sox swap Jackson, Teahen for 2 Jays pitchers
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Wednesday's White Sox trade was money motivated.
If there are any more deals before Sunday afternoon's nonwaiver deadline, they will be clear signals the Sox simply don't think they are good enough to contend in the American League's weakest division.
"Let's wait until we get to Sunday," general manager Kenny Williams said.
That means the White Sox have two more games — against the high-powered Red Sox on Friday and Saturday — to show Williams they have what it takes.
Their effort during Wednesday afternoon's 2-1 win over Detroit at U.S. Cellular Field certainly helps the cause, and the Sox are back to within 3½ games of the first-place Tigers in the Central.
That means desirable players like Carlos Quentin, John Danks, Gavin Floyd and just about anyone else not named Alex Rios or Adam Dunn are likely to stay in place the rest of the way.
"Listen, since the all-star break, with the exception of our K.C. series, I've enjoyed the guys' go at it," Williams said. "They've been going at it hard. It's been encouraging. Even (Tuesday) night's loss, I found encouragement because they battled their tails off. Justin Verlander is a tough dude out there. We had some guys shorten their swings and battle at-bat after at-bat and we had a chance to win.
"That's all you can hope for. We keep getting that kind of intensity, I think we are more likely to stick with the situation than to go the direction I mentioned the other day."
That was Monday, and Williams openly discussed "turning over the entire roster."
For now, he'll settle for Wednesday's trade that sent starting pitcher Edwin Jackson and third baseman Mark Teahen to the Blue Jays for right-handed reliever Jason Frasor and minor-league starter Zach Stewart.
This was a cost-cutting move for the White Sox, and the Jays are paying the remainder of the $8.35 million Jackson is owed this season and the remainder of the $4.75 million Teahen is owed.
In a big surprise, Toronto also agreed to pick up Teahen's $5.5 million salary in 2012.
"We need to make a little bit of a dent in our payroll here, which has been stressed a little bit," Williams said. "We did not want to be making a move that would be counterproductive to the opportunity for us to win still."
Jackson didn't stay with Toronto long. He was moved to the Cardinals for Colby Rasmus, and Jackson is scheduled to start against the Cubs on Friday in St. Louis.
The Sox get a reliable middle man in Frasor, who was 2-1 with a 2.98 ERA in 44 appearances with the Jays this season. They also get a reliever that can take some of the pressure off workhorse Jesse Crain.
The 33-year-old Frasor is a Chicago-area native. He lives in Oak Forest and pitched at Southern Illinois University.
The White Sox are picking up the remainder of Frasor's $3.5 million contract this season. The right-hander has a $3.75 million club option for 2012.
Stewart, 24, was 5-5 with a 4.20 ERA in 16 starts with Class AA New Hampshire this season and made the Eastern League all-star team.
The right-hander also was 0-1 with a 4.86 ERA in 3 starts with the Jays.
Over four minor-league seasons, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Stewart has gone 18-13 with a 3.05 ERA.
"Zach Stewart's been on our radar for a long time, particularly last year when he was doing some special things at Double-A," Williams said. "He will ultimately be in the mix in some way, shape or form, most likely this year. As far as Jason Frasor is concerned ... he's one of the top quality relievers in baseball and we're happy to have him."
Jackson was 7-7 with a 3.92 ERA in 19 starts this season. Teahen batted .209 with 3 home runs and 11 RBI in 50 games.
• For more White Sox reports, follow Scot via Twitter@scotgregor and check out his Chicago's Inside Pitch blog at dailyherald.com.
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