Ken Williams says White Sox are done dealing, in race
BY TONI GINNETTI firstname.lastname@example.org July 31, 2011 12:04AM
Sox GM Ken Williams (left) is trying to catch GM Dave Dombrowski’s Detroit Tigers. | Charles Rex Arbogast~AP
Updated: November 5, 2011 5:19PM
The chance the White Sox will make another trade before the 3 p.m. non-waiver deadline today ‘‘is very, very slim,’’ general manager Ken Williams said Saturday.
Despite rumors of a possible move, perhaps involving left-handed reliever Matt Thornton, Williams said it was unlikely the Sox’ roster would change, in part, because he doesn’t want to give up players needed to contend for the American League Central title.
‘‘Absolutely there’s always a chance [of a deal],’’ Williams said, ‘‘but I would say that chance is very, very slim. I don’t see anything on the horizon, and everything that potentially can be done comes at a sacrifice of the guys I expect we would need to try to win this division, so it’s very unlikely.’’
On Wednesday, the Sox were part of a three-team deal that sent starting pitcher Edwin Jackson and third baseman Mark Teahen to the Toronto Blue Jays for reliever Jason Frasor and minor-league pitcher Zach Stewart. The Blue Jays then sent Jackson to the St. Louis Cardinals for outfielder Colby Rasmus.
The Sox were able to move Jackson because he was part of a six-man rotation, and Teahen was traded partly to save salary with Brent Lillibridge and Omar Vizquel available as backup infielders.
Williams had warned before the homestand began Monday against the Detroit Tigers that the team’s play would decide if he’d become a seller. The Sox won two of three from the Tigers, then beat the Boston Red Sox on Friday.
‘‘We won some games,’’ Williams said of why he shifted course back to contention mode. ‘‘That’s what it comes down to, and they’ve done it in a fashion Ozzie [Guillen] and I talked about, with an aggressive style of play. We see guys fighting in their at-bats, and that’s what we wanted to see.’’
''This is a tough, tough Boston team, and you better bring your best.
‘‘Hopefully we go on series by series. That’s how you go on an extended run.’’
As the deadline nears and teams were completing trades — including the rival Tigers, who acquired starting pitcher Doug Fister from the Seattle Mariners — Williams smiled at some of the rumors about potential Sox moves.
‘‘I have a lot of friends in the general-manager ranks, and some are calling just to check in,’’ Williams said. ‘‘There are a lot of rumors about us being buyers or sellers, and they wanted to check, and there are some smart-aleck ones calling [to joke]. It’s the most fun time of the calendar year.’’
Williams said he pays attention to what other teams are doing, ‘‘but our focus has to be consistent baseball and improving on who we are. That has to be our focus more than what Cleveland or Detroit or anyone else is doing.
‘‘I’m grateful [the Sox] have come out in the fashion they have. We didn’t put this team together with any other intention than a division championship and hopefully another World Series championship.’’
Asked how close he came to taking a different direction, Williams said, ‘‘It’s good we won some games this week, and in the fashion we did. That’s all I’ll say.’’