CHICAGO -- Jose Abreu is as excited to have Yoan Moncada as part of the White Sox as the euphoric White Sox fan base.
"I am very happy about the White Sox acquisition of Yoan Moncada," Abreu said through translator Billy Russo in a statement released by the White Sox on Friday. "I'm proud because I played with him in Cienfuegos [in Cuba], I was his captain, and now we are going to play together again.
NORTH HARBOR, Md. -- If you were a fan of the White Sox -- or covered the White Sox or worked for the White Sox, for that matter -- it was dangerous to go to sleep during the final few days of baseball's Winter Meetings at the Gaylord Resort & Convention Center.
You just never knew when Rick Hahn was going to strike.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- The White Sox selected right-handed pitcher Dylan Covey from Oakland with the their 12th pick (ninth selection overall) in the Major League phase of Thursday's Rule 5 Draft that concluded baseball's Winter Meetings at the Gaylord Resort & Convention Center.
Covey, 25, made six starts with Double-A Midland during the 2016 season, posting a 2-1 record with a 1.84 ERA and 26 strikeouts in 29 1/3 innings. He was sidelined by an oblique injury but bounced back with the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Hey, Rick Hahn. Wipe that smile off your face. You've still got a lot more work to do, not that you need us to tell you.
Hahn headed to the Winter Meetings with seemingly more on his plate than any other executive after last summer declaring the White Sox "mired in mediocrity'' and then standing pat at the non-waiver Trade Deadline. He said he wasn't going to make a move just to make a move, pointing out that a wider group of players could be available in the offseason.
"We've had a lot of interesting conversations on a number of different fronts involving our players," White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said. "And yes, we still have reliever pieces and starting pieces that are appealing to various teams throughout the league. Still thoroughly engaged, deeply engaged on a number of different fronts."
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- The 2016 Winter Meetings were a tale of two Sox: Red and White.
Working from opposite ends of the talent acquisition spectrum, Boston and Chicago both found remarkable success: The Red Sox trading prospects for established players, the White Sox trading established players for prospects. In the process, Boston established itself as the extremely early favorite for the 2017 American League pennant. The White Sox turned the beginning of a rebuilding project into an impressive haul of prospects that should speed their climb back into contention.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- For the second time in as many days, the Chicago White Sox seriously upgraded their farm system by unloading an established Major Leaguer. On Wednesday, it was outfielder Adam Eaton getting shipped to the Nationals for a trio of right-handed pitching prospects.
Not just any pitching prospects. Lucas Giolito is the highest-ranked pitching prospect on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 at No. 3 overall. Reynaldo Lopez isn't that far behind, at No. 38 overall. Dane Dunning was a first-round pick from the 2016 Draft who, while having a lower profile than his trade-mates, has the chance to be a very good big league starter.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- It didn't take long for Yoan Moncada -- the face of the White Sox future, acquired from Boston with three other prospects for Chris Sale on Tuesday -- to get in touch with Jose Abreu, the face of the White Sox present.
"Abreu texted me yesterday," Moncada said through translator Billy Russo during a conference call on Wednesday. "He welcomed me to the White Sox organization. We were talking a little bit about this opportunity for both of us to play again.
White Sox land Giolito, 2 more prospects for Eaton
By Scott Merkin
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Here's a sentence White Sox fans have not heard in quite some time: Top 10 Minor League system.
But that is the new reality for the franchise, according to MLBPipeline.com's Jonathan Mayo, after the White Sox acquired right-handed pitchers Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez and Dane Dunning from the Nationals for right fielder Adam Eaton on Wednesday. The trio represented the Nos. 1 (Giolito), 3 (Lopez) and 6 (Dunning) prospects in the Nationals' system.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- On a wall in Rick Hahn's suburban Chicago home, in the bedroom of one of his two sons, resides a picture featuring his son with Chris Sale. It hangs next to a picture of his son with Mark Buehrle.
So rebuilding a team certainly isn't earning Hahn major dad points.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- If anyone still fostered a shred of doubt regarding the White Sox direction, Tuesday's trade of Chris Sale to Boston answered any lingering questions.
The Red Sox picked up a front-of-the-rotation hurler in Sale, who gives them quite possibly the best rotation in the American League and reinforces Boston's standing as a postseason frontrunner. In adding infielder Yoan Moncada, right-handers Michael Kopech and Victor Diaz, and outfielder Luis Alexander Basabe, the White Sox rebuild began in full force.
The Red Sox made a splash Tuesday on Day 2 of the Winter Meetings, acquiring left-handed ace Chris Sale in a blockbuster deal that sent Yoan Moncada and three other prospects to the White Sox.
The inclusion of Moncada, MLBPipeline.com's No. 1 overall prospect, is particularly significant, as it marks the first time in at least 25 years that baseball's top overall prospect has been traded, based on the rankings done by MLB, MLB Pipeline and Baseball America.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Rick Renteria knows about rebuilding.
He was part of the Cubs' ongoing process, which eventually resulted in the 2016 World Series championship, when he managed one season on the North Side in '14. So Renteria is ready to work with young players in his first go at the White Sox helm, after serving as the team's bench coach under Robin Ventura in '16, but he also knows it takes a village to grow a consistent winner.
Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Winter Meetings interview with Rick Renteria
Q. When you hear the word "rebuild" mentioned in conjunction with the White Sox, what goes through your mind?
RICK RENTERIA: Honestly, I haven't heard the word because I haven't really been -- you guys know me, I don't do a whole lot of reading. Most of my information comes from the guys that know what they are doing. Obviously we got back a couple of high-end prospects, and we're looking forward to see how they end up developing with us as White Sox.
You know, we're obviously going to miss Chris. He was an integral part of our organization and our team. My only concern is obviously whatever players, what group of players I have, those are the ones I have to manage. So at this point, we have what we have right now and we'll see how it continues.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Chris Sale is gone, but he won't soon forget his seven seasons in Chicago.
"I really appreciate the White Sox fans' support through the years and can't wait to come back to Chicago and see everyone," Sale wrote in a text to MLB.com on Tuesday after he was traded to Boston in exchange for infielder Yoan Moncada, right-handers Michael Kopech and Victor Diaz, and outfielder Luis Alexander Basabe. "I have a lot of great memories in Chicago, and a piece of me will always be in that city."
RICK HAHN: It's never easy to trade a pitcher the caliber of Chris Sale, a player that our amateur scouting staff identified early on, prior to 2010 draft, and our player development people along with Major League staff helped maximize his high, high level of talent at the Big League level.
As I talked with Chris this afternoon to inform him of the trade, pass along our great gratitude as an organization for everything he did in our uniform and obviously wished him well, it was not an easy phone call to make, but one, quite frankly, based upon the return that we were able to procure in this trade was one that we were extremely excited about making.
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Were the Winter Meetings lobby a ticketed attraction (and maybe we shouldn't give people ideas here), then the Chris Sale trade that went down on Tuesday at the Gaylord National Resort & Conference Center would allow this year's event to qualify as money well spent. This is the kind of stuff we come for -- the big, bold splash involving a perennial All-Star and Cy Young Award candidate who is, ahem, changing Sox.
A swap this seismic doesn't occur in isolation. It has ripple effects throughout the industry. And here, in no particular order, are the teams most affected.
Anthony Castrovince has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2004. Read his columns and follow him on Twitter at @Castrovince. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
For Sale: What the White Sox got
Chicago boosts farm with MLB's top prospect, fireballer, two more high-ceiling Minor Leaguers
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Perhaps the biggest name being bandied about since the Winter Meetings began, left-handed ace Chris Sale, has been dealt to the Red Sox. To get the five-time All-Star, Boston president of baseball operations Dave Dombowski had to seriously raid the prospect cupboard, dealing four of the organization's Top 30 to the White Sox.
The headliner of those four, of course, is No. 1 overall prospect Yoan Moncada. Signed two months shy of his 20th birthday, Moncada received $31.5 million to sign out of Cuba, a record bonus for an amateur player. That blew past the Red Sox's international pool, forcing them to pay an additional $31.5 million in penalties.
With the World Baseball Classic just a few months away, the rosters are beginning to take shape. More names surfaced Monday as the World Baseball Classic released an initial list of 30 players who are confirmed to be participating in the 2017 tournament.
Spanning 16 countries, the players include 24 Major League All-Stars, but the upcoming WBC, which will take place in March, provides a global stage for veterans and rising stars alike.
CHICAGO -- The White Sox agreed to terms on a one-year, $3.5 million contract with second baseman Brett Lawrie and a one-year, $3 million contract with outfielder Avisail Garcia, as announced by the team Friday. The White Sox declined to tender a 2017 contract to right-handed hurler Blake Smith, making him a free agent and leaving their 40-man roster at 38 entering baseball's Winter Meetings, which begin on Monday.
MLB.com and MLB Network will have wall-to-wall coverage of the Meetings from the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center outside Washington, D.C. Fans can watch live streaming of all news conferences and manager availability on MLB.com, including the Rule 5 Draft on Thursday at 9 a.m. ET.
New agreement includes change to home-field advantage in World Series
By Richard Justice
IRVING, Texas -- Major League Baseball's players and owners reached a tentative five-year Collective Bargaining Agreement through the 2021 season on Wednesday night. The parties will follow up today with a formal document, which then must be ratified by representatives of both sides.
At 8:40 p.m. ET, an assortment of happy players, owners, lawyers and staffers poured from meeting rooms to exchange handshakes and hugs. That's how quickly 36 hours of round-the-clock negotiations ended, nearly four hours before today's deadline of 12:01 a.m. ET to reach a deal. Short of an agreement, the sport was faced with the best-case scenario of an extension or owners could have imposed a lockout.
CHICAGO -- The main issue Tyler Saladino had to deal with during the final week of November was getting stuck in a massive traffic jam, a seemingly common problem for any California native.
As for the back problem -- a herniated disk L5 on his right side, to be precise -- that ended his strong 2016 season on Sept. 21, the 27-year-old White Sox infielder is not only without pain but also feeling confident the malady stands under control.
The Arizona Fall League always is loaded with talent, and it was stronger than usual in 2016. In the initial installment of MLBPipeline.com's "The Next Big Leaguers," which premieres Tuesday, we focused on five prospects: Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger, Twins shortstop Nick Gordon, Cubs outfielder Eloy Jimenez, Red Sox infielder Yoan Moncada and Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres.
We could have spotlighted many more promising prospects if not limited by time constraints, and below we'll do exactly that.