Is international help on the way for White Sox?
The White Sox were competitive last season, finally. General manager Rick Hahn wants to keep it that way.
"We feel the window is open and we are now going to be aggressive in our efforts to try to put us in our best position to win championships," Hahn said after acquiring veteran starting pitcher Lance Lynn in a trade with Texas last month. "We want to keep that open as long as possible, so we don't intend to do anything reckless or too detrimental to our long-term health. At the same time, we know the chances to win are rare and need to be properly serviced to increase those chances as much as possible."
Hahn was OK trading promising young starter Dane Dunning and pitching prospect Avery Weems to get Lynn, who bolsters the Sox's rotation behind Lucas Giolito and Dallas Keuchel.
The White Sox still have young starters like Michael Kopech, Garrett Crochet, Dylan Cease and Jared Kelley to help keep the competitive window open down the road.
In the outfield, Hahn brought back veteran Adam Eaton to join Luis Robert in center and Eloy Jimenez in left.
They still have Blake Rutherford and Micker Adolfo in the system, and the Sox are expected to add Yoelqui Cespedes late next week when the international signing period opens.
If the last name sounds familiar, it should. He is the younger half-brother of Yoenis Cespedes, a two-time all-star.
The 23-year-old Yoelqui Cespedes is MLB.com's top-ranked international player. Baseball America rates the 5-foot-9, 205-pound outfielder No. 12 overall.
The White Sox are reportedly going to sign Cespedes for roughly $2 million.
He would be the latest Cuban-born player to join an organization that has had great success with players like Minnie Minoso, Jose Abreu, Yoan Moncada, Robert and Jose Contreras.
In four seasons playing in Cuba, Cespedes batted .287/.351/.415 with 12 home runs and 98 home runs over 235 games.
The Sox are expected to sign another Cuban-born player next week -- pitcher Norge Vera. Baseball America reports the No. 26 overall international prospect will get a $1.5 million bonus.
The 20-year-old Vera is 6-foot-4, 185 pounds and his fastball has been clocked at 96 mph.