While there isn’t likely to be much in the way of market ripples that impact the Chicago Cubs on this one, it’s a Friday night, I just put the kids to bed, The Wife is out of town, so I figured I’d write a little something. I just realized how sad that sounds. On the other hand, BASEBALL!
Bob Nightengale reports that the White Sox have signed former Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche to a two-year, $25 million deal. LaRoche, 35, can still swing the stick, hitting .259/.362/.455 last year, good for a 127 wRC+. I think this is a great deal for the White Sox, who can use LaRoche part-time at first base, and part-time at DH, where the losses (well, “losses”) of Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko left the Sox without a big bat to pair with Jose Abreu. In theory, LaRoche will mostly be the DH.
The Nationals were always expected to move on from LaRoche, in part so they can turn first base over to Ryan Zimmerman. The only team that had been heavily connected to LaRoche in recent days was the Marlins, who are allegedly going to do some spending to augment the roster after Giancarlo Stanton agreed to take very little of his $325 million extension in the first few years. Perhaps LaRoche going to the Sox leaves the Marlins able to spend elsewhere, but we’ll see if they can actually convince anyone to come.
With another solid move or two, you can dream on the White Sox being competitive next year, especially if someone like Carlos Rodon breaks out. Although I don’t really care about the White Sox either way, and I found the “see, the Sox are doing it the right way” narrative last year to be painfully erroneous, I do think the City of Chicago’s sports soul suffers when the Cubs and White Sox are both non-competitive. And when they’re both good? Even though they’re in separate leagues and will play each other just six times in the regular season next year, there’s an energy that seems to make baseball better in the entire City when both teams at least worth talking about. In other words, in some ways, what’s good for the White Sox somehow winds up being good for the Cubs. At least in some subtle, barely articulable way.
You may now resume your Friday night activities that are likely more exciting than mine.