Well, we were wrong, as Rick Hahn and the White Sox pulled the trigger on a trade that will send Jesse Crain to the Rays. In return, the Sox will receive “future considerations,” which will be “Players to be Named Later” or cash depending on Crain’s health the rest of the season.
While the return isn’t all too exciting at this point, one can assume that if Crain comes back healthy in the next couple of weeks and helps to solidify a shaky Rays bullpen, what the White Sox would receive would be pretty substantial. Elite set-up men like Crain have brought in one or sometimes two top prospects in the past (see Mike Adams trade in 2011), so we need to cheer for the Rays and Jesse Crain the rest of this season if we want the White Sox to get quality in return. If he never recovers, the Sox would at least receive cash, which is better than letting him walk in free agency.
However, I, like I would assume the majority of you out there, would like to hear what exactly we are getting for Crain, and would like to hear it now. It’s always better to have the prospects you are acquiring to develop under your watch as soon as possible. I guess all we can do is keep a close eye on the Rays farm system these next couple of months to see what could be coming the White Sox way.
As far as Crain goes, he gets a chance to compete for a World Series, as the Rays currently lead the AL East and have been one of baseball’s hottest teams over the past month. Tampa Bay’s one weakness all season has been the bullpen, so adding a set-up man like Crain could give them a HUGE boost and separate them from rest of the extremely tight and competitive AL East.
It’s good to see Crain move on to a better squad, as he’s been nothing but a professional in his time in the Silver and Black. Since coming over from the rival Twins in 2011 via free agency, he’s improved every year in a Sox uniform and is having the best season of his career in 2013. He’s been far more productive with the White Sox than he ever was with the Twins, and of course, that brings a smile to the face of Sox fans everywhere.
As far as a corresponding move goes, there isn’t one needed, as Crain has been on the disabled list since early this month. Nate Jones and Matt Lindstrom will continue to handle the late-inning duties and bridge the gap to Addison Reed, assuming both of those guys aren’t traded as well. It’s been clear that neither of those two can handle that role in the capacity that Crain did, so as bad as things have been for the Sox this year, it’s hard to imagine anything improving.
Hopefully, those PTBNL’s and cash turn into something special, as move two of the fire sale has been completed.