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Blake Rutherford Jersey White Sox

The FanSided Fake Winter Meetings are currently underway. As the Colorado Rockies representative at these simulated meetings, we came to the table ready to shake things up.
It has been well reported that the Colorado Rockies are looking to find some creative ways to enhance their roster without “making some great big splash.” It’s also well known that the Rockies are backed into a financial corner thanks in part to some large, underperforming contracts.

With all of this in mind, we decided to shop around one of those contracts around to start the meeting. And, we were happy to find a trade partner in the Chicago White Sox.

I talked in this article how Daniel Murphy would be a good fit for the White Sox knowing they needed a designated hitter. Lo and behold, our friends at SouthsideShowdown.com thought the same thing.

Knowing that, we traded Murphy to the White Sox (along with his $8 million contract this season and $6 million buyout from a $12 million mutual option for 2021, per Spotrac.com) in exchange for 22-year-old Double-A outfielder (and former first-round pick) Blake Rutherford. He is also ranked as Chicago’s ninth-highest prospect according to MLB.com. Last season, he slashed .265/.319/.365 and earned this line from MLBPipeline.com:

Rutherford still impresses scouts with his smooth left-handed swing, pitch-recognition skills and willingness to use the entire field.

Yes, Rutherford would be part of a future for the Rockies and still has some work to get to the Majors. However, the Murphy trade not only freed up some financial space but also will allow Colorado to move Ryan McMahon to first base and begin the official process of him becoming the team’s first baseman of the future. The second base competition is officially open between Brendan Rodgers (who has said he expects to be back from right shoulder surgery in time for spring training) and Garrett Hampson.

Murphy’s defense was a liability last season and his disappointing season at the plate (yes, thanks in part to a broken finger suffered in the season’s second game) will likely not leave a big hole in the lineup to fill.

All in all, the Rockies save money (which we’re investing into other needed areas, stay tuned for those moves) and acquire a prospect while strengthening the right side of the infield. We’re happy with the move. What about you? We would love to hear your comments below or let us know on Twitter (@RoxPileFS).

NEXT: Who will Colorado protect in the Rule 5 draft?
Again, please remember that this is a simulated move. This has not happened in real life. This trade was made as a part of the FanSided FAKE Winter Meetings (fake is the key word there).

More simulated moves are coming so stay tuned!

Michael Kopech Jersey White Sox

The Chicago White Sox made a huge trade that sent their organization back by design so they can move forward. This was three years ago today.
The Chicago White Sox will forever see December 6th, 2016 as the day that the rebuild began for the organization. They were a mediocre team for the first half of the decade and they had finally had enough. They started off the 2016 season on a high note but fell way off as the season went on so they decided to make a bunch of changes.

It started by sending their superstar pitcher Chris Sale to the Boston Red Sox. December 6th, 2019 is the three year anniversary of this transaction that sent Sale to Boston for Yoan Moncada and Michael Kopech. This trade has done wonders for the organization and is a symbol of what they have built and are currently building.

From that moment on they were embracing the idea of trading everyone away and being bad. They were pretty bad over three years but now they are looking up. Yoan Moncada has emerged as not only one of the best players in the organization but one of the best players in the league. He came in third place in the American League batting title race which shows how impactful he can be.

The Red Sox ended up winning the World Series in 2018 with Sale as their ace. He also threw the last strike that earned the victory. You can never say that Boston lost the trade for that face and they have Sale locked up for a long time. He didn’t really have a great year in 2019 while Moncada was tearing it up but that doesn’t mean he can’t bounce back in 2020.

Michael Kopech got his call up at the end of the 2018 season and was really good. He was shut down for the end of that season after a few starts and all of the 2019 season to recover from Tommy John surgery. This was a bit of a setback but there is no doubt that he can go on and be a top of the rotation level pitcher. That would make the White Sox really happy with how this trade worked out. They are already happy with having one of the best third basemen in the league with Moncada but a great starter in Kopech is even sweeter.

The White Sox made this trade and put all of their faith in Rick Hahn to break down the roster to nothing and build it back up. That has now happened as they believe that they are going to be a great team in 2020. It all started three years ago today when they pulled the trigger to send Sale to Boston.

Yoan Moncada Jersey White Sox

Vinnie Duber of NBC Sports Chicago reports that the Chicago White Sox have talked with the Los Angeles Dodgers about a deal for Joc Pederson to bring him to the south side.

Pederson, 27, is coming off a very good season for the Dodgers in which he hit .249/.339/.538 with career-highs in both homers (36) and RBI (74). That gave him a 127 wRC+ and 3.0 fWAR for the 2019 season.

The left-handed hitter and fielder spent most of his season in the corner outfield spots, but did have a brief stint where he started at first base for the team.

In 789 2/3 outfield innings, Pederson rated above-average with a 6.2 UZR and 11 DRS according to FanGraphs.

The only spot in the outfield that he hasn’t fared well is in center field where he has -16 DRS and a -7.1 UZR for his career (3,149 innings).

For the White Sox, he could help fill out an outfield that is expected to have Eloy Jimenez and Luis Robert patrolling left and center field before the end of April.

In the article by Duber, it’s mentioned that the team is also considering signing Nicholas Castellanos to play right field in 2020, but there is one major difference between the two that should make the team prefer Pederson.

Castellanos is a pretty dreadful defender with -35 DRS and a -26.2 UZR in right field for his career.

While he has seen some improvement from that number with only -9 DRS in 2019 over 1,171 innings, there is still some serious work to be done for him to become a league-average defender.

Pederson, meanwhile, would represent an improvement for the team defensively and considering they ranked 25th in all of baseball in DRS (-49), they could certainly use a plus defender.

Furthermore, the team is only projected to have two left-handed-hitting options in their lineup in Yoan Moncada and Yasmani Grandal (both switch-hitters) which means that Pederson could help balance the lineup more.

Now, the reason to not pursue Pederson would be if a trade for him requires giving up too much to acquire him.

That being said, Pederson only has one year of control left before hitting free agency for the first time in his career after the 2020 season.

According to Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors, Pederson is expected to make $8.5 million in his final season of arbitration.

Having only one year of control strongly limits his value in a trade and given the Dodgers have a glut of outfielders, it makes little sense not to trade him this offseason.

On top of it, the White Sox have a very strong farm system which should help in finding a match that is good for both sides.

If the White Sox can acquire Joc Pederson for a reasonable price, he should be their top choice to fill their right field vacancy in 2020.

Jose Abreu Jersey White Sox

Jose Abreu of the Chicago White Sox is a fan favorite, power hitting first baseman. That sounds awfully similar to another first baseman in Chicago.
Less than a month into the 2019-20 offseason, the Chicago White Sox signed veteran first baseman Jose Abreu to a 3-year, $50 million extension.

Abreu had already accepted the one-year, $17.8 million qualifying offer from the team. With that in mind, the 3-year extension is essentially a 2-year, $32.2 million deal through 2022. He’ll become an unrestricted free agent after the 2022 season.

We’ve already talked about the similarities between the Chicago Cubs and White Sox rebuilds, and the clubs’ first basemen are quite similar.

Abreu and Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo have many things in common, from their game to their personalities.

As for their style of play, both are power-hitting first basemen. While Abreu’s HR% is an impressive 4.6%, Rizzo isn’t far behind with a solid 4.2%.

Though it’s true that Rizzo is better at getting on base while Abreu is yet to log under 100 strikeouts in his career, they’re still solid power hitters who can get on base at the top of the order, typically at the three-spot.

Their fielding is similar as well, although Rizzo has an edge over Abreu. Nonetheless, both guys come in at single-digit errors on average each season. Rizzo’s .995 fielding percentage is just .003 higher than Abreu’s .992. Though Rizzo is a bit flashier and has two Gold Gloves to his resume, their range factor per game (calculated by put outs and assists divided by games) is an astoundingly equal 8.82.

For those wondering how they compare in the wins above replacement, they’re also strikingly similar. After six major league seasons, Abreu checks in at 21.2. In that same span of Rizzo’s first six years in the league, he totaled 21.8 WAR.

Just look at Abreu’s and Rizzo’s projections for 2020 according to Baseball-Reference:

Jose Abreu: .276/.330/.501, 28 HR, 94 RBI, 77 runs scored
Anthony Rizzo: .277/.380/.494, 24 HR, 87 RBI, 76 runs scored
There are…not many differences there.

Even their personalities are quite similar. Both players are three-time All-Star first basemen who are excellent leaders in the clubhouse and respected around the league. They’re solid centerpieces to center a rebuild and championship team around, especially in terms of their leadership and work ethic.

Thanks to all of their similarities, Rizzo and Abreu earned very similar paydays for the next couple of seasons. Each year, they’ll both earn between $16-18 million (though Abreu will receive a bit under that in 2020).

Both organizations are fortunate to have such talented fan-favorites at first base, and they’re both great for the game in many ways.

But don’t get us started on Anthony Rizzo’s pitching abilities. Abreu could only dream of such a stellar pitching record.

Evan Marshall Jersey White Sox

It’s non-tender deadline day, perhaps more often greeted by the casual observer with a question mark as opposed to an exclamation point, but an important day on baseball’s offseason calendar, nonetheless.

The White Sox, along with their 29 major league compatriots, have until Monday night to tender contract offers to their arbitration-eligible players or to decide not to, sending them to free agency. The White Sox have decisions to make on six players: Alex Colome, James McCann, Leury Garcia, Carlos Rodon, Yolmer Sanchez and Evan Marshall.

Here’s what to expect.

Yolmer Sanchez

Sanchez has been the most discussed of this group, and indeed his time with the White Sox already appears to be over. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reported last week that the team placed its Gold Glove second baseman on outright waivers and that Sanchez cleared those waivers and will head to free agency. Sanchez, who had repeatedly said he wanted to stay with the only organization he’s ever known, followed with a social-media post or two indicating he was going to try to make the best of a less-than-ideal situation. The team, aside from a comment from manager Rick Renteria, has not officially announced anything involving Sanchez’s status.

Certainly the White Sox moving on from Sanchez wasn’t difficult to foresee. Nick Madrigal, the team’s first-round pick in the 2018 draft, is on the doorstep of the major leagues and is expected to be the starting second baseman on the South Side for the bulk of the 2020 campaign. While Sanchez plays some exceptional defense, he can’t match what Madrigal – a top-40 prospect in baseball who has also been touted as an elite defender – can do with the bat. Sanchez slashed just .252/.318/.321 in 2019, while Madrigal tore up the minors to the tune of .311/.377/.414 and struck out only 16 times in 120 games. In the end, Sanchez would have been an expensive reserve infielder, projected to make $6.2 million in arbitration.

Alex Colome

There are certain corners of the White Sox internet that look at Colome’s second-half splits and lack of strikeouts and see doom coming around the bend. Indeed, Colome did fare much worse after the All-Star break than he did before it, with a 3.91 ERA and a frightening .265/.347/.422 slash line against in the second half after posting a 2.02 ERA and holding hitters to a .127/.194/.288 line in the first half. Is that worth a projected $10.3 million? That’s the decision the White Sox face.

But Colome has been one of the more productive ninth-inning men in baseball in recent seasons, even if the second half of 2019 didn’t look so good. Since the start of the 2016 season, he’s posted a 2.78 ERA and saved 126 games, a total that would be significantly higher if not for his playing setup man for the majority of 2018.

In a 2019 season featuring plenty of problems from the rotation and lineup, the bullpen was a reliable unit for the White Sox, with a 4.31 ERA that ranked seventh in the American League, behind only the five playoff teams and the Cleveland Indians, who narrowly missed the postseason. Stability at the back end with Colome and Aaron Bummer is a good thing to head into 2020 with, especially with so many other holes that need filling on the roster. The White Sox likely don’t want to add potentially expensive bullpen help to their offseason to-do list.

James McCann

The White Sox tendering McCann a contract is a no-brainer, but he’s been talked about an awful lot since the team inked free-agent catcher Yasmani Grandal to the richest contract it’s ever given out a couple weeks ago. McCann doesn’t figure to go anywhere, even with another All-Star backstop now ahead of him on the depth chart. McCann was a heck of a find by Rick Hahn last offseason, and having two good catchers is better than having one, especially considering the lineup permutations Rick Renteria might be forced to come up with if the White Sox front office opts for a DH rotation of Grandal, McCann, Jose Abreu and Zack Collins.

But McCann will be talked about on a variety of levels as the offseason goes on, too. If the White Sox could sell high on a guy who made the All-Star team last season – but who also batted just .226/.281/.413 in the second half – would they take that opportunity? Or will McCann stay on and serve as a personal catcher of sorts for Lucas Giolito after the duo had such incredible success in 2019? The White Sox have options, but no matter which path they end up traveling down with McCann, they’ll almost surely do so after tendering him a contract Monday.

Jace Fry Jersey White Sox

Zack Collins was called up from Triple-A Charlotte on Tuesday, becoming the latest top White Sox prospect expected to make his big-league debut this season.

He’ll wear No. 38.

Fellow catcher Seby Zavala got the call in May, now Collins gets his turn, as the Sox also placed veteran backstop Welington Castillo on the 10-day injured list with a strained left oblique.

The team also reinstated left-handed reliever Jace Fry (left shoulder soreness) from the injured list.

The Sox have yet to set their lineup before Tuesday night’s game against the Cubs at Wrigley Field, so it’s not a certainty Collins will start.

Collins slashed .250/.374/.482 with nine home runs, 39 RBI and 36 walks (tied for fifth in the International League) in 50 games for the Knights this season.

He made 31 starts at catcher and nine at first base.

James McCann has been a revelation for the Sox, and Collins has a way to go before resembling the team’s catcher of the future. The organization’s No. 12 prospect, a 2016 first-round pick, has as much to prove with his glove as with his bat.

Collins has thrown out 32.4 percent of steal attempts.

He ranks as the No. 9 catching prospect in baseball, and Baseball America grades him as having the best plate discipline in the Sox’s system.

Yolmer Sanchez Jersey White Sox

The Chicago White Sox declined to tender a 2020 contract to Gold Glove-winning second baseman Yolmer Sánchez, making him an unrestricted free agent.

Sánchez, who beat out New York’s DJ LeMahieu and Houston’s José Altuve for the prize in November, could still re-sign with the White Sox, but the team has opted not to give him a significant pay bump from his 2019 salary and has paved the way for him to potentially seek opportunities elsewhere.

The White Sox also announced that they declined to tender contracts to Ryan Burr and Caleb Frare, making them free agents. Right-handed pitcher Thyago Vieira was also released by the team to pursue playing opportunities in Japan, according to the team.

The White Sox said that all remaining players who were eligible for contracts were tendered offers, including reliever Alex Colomé, pitchers Carlos Rodon and Evan Marshall, and utilityman Leury García.

The roster moves leave the White Sox 40-man roster at 36 players.

Robin Ventura Jersey White Sox

1956 — With the first of many awards he would win in his Hall of Fame career, Luis Aparicio became the first Venezuelan to ever win the Rookie of the Year Award. Aparicio led the AL in steals with 21 and played a stellar defensive game, leading the league in putouts and assists as well as in games and innings played. Aparicio picked up 22 of the 24 possible votes. He beat out Cleveland’s Rocky Colavito (who would join the Sox in 1967) and Baltimore’s Tito Francona (who also would be a member of the White Sox, for part of the 1958 campaign).

1964 — The Sox traded pitcher Frank Baumann to the Cubs for catcher Jimmie Schaffer. It was the first time the two Chicago clubs made a direct trade with each other.

1970 — For the second and final time, the White Sox traded Luis Aparicio. The future Hall of Fame shortstop was sent to the Red Sox for infielders Luis Alvarado and Mike Andrews. Those players helped the Sox in the early 1970s, but this is one Roland Hemond trade that some have second-guessed. In 1972, if Aparicio was around to provide some stability to the infield, the White Sox may have taken the Western Division title. Lee “Bee-Bee” Richards, Alvarado and Rich Morales simply weren’t the answer at shortstop that season.

1998 — Popular and proficient third baseman Robin Ventura signed a free agent contract with the Mets. Ventura, who was an outspoken critic of the “White Flag” trade, won five Gold Gloves in his time on the South Side in addition to hitting 171 home runs. He had six seasons with at least 90 RBIs and hit .280 or better for five seasons. He’d return in 2012 to begin a five-year tenure as manager.

Bo Jackson Jersey White Sox

I’m going to take a one-week sabbatical from the five greatest Royals at each position to write a piece on baseball cards. Specifically, Royals baseball cards. I’d read something in one of the comment sections about how a reader missed the old days of baseball cards. If you’re over the age of 45 you can relate.

Back in the day, you’d go to your local Five and Dime or grocery store and buy a pack (or three) for a piddly amount of change. When I started collecting, way back in 1968, as I recall a pack would set me back a nickel. Plus, you’d get a stick of pink gum, usually covered in some sort of white gum dust, which often would stain the first card of every pack. You’d get ten cards in each pack and if you wanted to complete a set, you had to buy a lot of packs.

For me, that meant I would have to mow a lot of yards and shovel snow off a lot of driveways before school in order to accumulate the cash necessary to complete a set. In 1975, I found an ad in the back of a baseball magazine advertising complete sets for sale. Eureka! For $12 I could order a complete set and not have to worry about getting 15 cards of Bill Gogolewski. You couldn’t get rid of Bill Gogolweski cards and there always seemed to be one in every pack I’d buy. Topps said they distributed all cards equally, but players like Gogolewski appeared far more often than the Mantles, Mays and Aaron’s of the world. You’d sit down with your friends to trade cards, trying to package together the best deal, but no one would take those Gogolewski cards.

So, I had my parents write a check for $12 (in exchange for my hard-earned cash) to a lady named Renata Galasso, somewhere in New Jersey or New York, and off it went in the mail. I can remember my dad saying, “You’ll never see that $12 again.” But lo and behold, about three weeks later, a UPS truck pulled up to the house and delivered my 1975 set. Wow! What a deal! I’d put on the Beach Boys album “Surfer girl”, the summer of 1975 being my Beach Boys phase, and play simulated baseball games of my own making with my newly acquired set. Plus, the 1975 set had the rookie card of George Brett. That was a great summer.

I collected hard from about 1969 to that glorious summer of 1975, then my collecting got sidetracked by the fumes. Car fumes and perfume, specifically. Soon college came, then real life: a job, marriage, kids, a mortgage, car payments. You know the drill. My cards sat idle for many years, in a box in my parents’ basement. Thankfully my mom did not throw them out, which was a fate that met many a man’s childhood card collection. I eventually picked up my boxes of cards, much to the delight of my parents, who were happy to have freed up the extra storage space.

In 1987, my wife and I attended a Royals game, and the team gave out these cool little books, sponsored by Surf laundry detergent, that had pictures and a description of every year of Royals cards up to that point. I’ve kept this book over the years and just recently found it, again, after unpacking some boxes of stuff. I loved it when it came out and I love it now. In addition to the card descriptions, the book also had a page on the team batting and pitching leaders, a page of the pitching and batting numbers of every player to play for the Royals, a couple of pages describing the highlights of each Topps set going back to 1951 and a page with the cards of the members of the Royals Hall of Fame. All five of them. Howser, Busby, Otis, Splittorff and Rojas. Here are the year by year highlights of those sets:

1969 – The expansion Royals got 27 cards in this set. About half of the players in the set are either wearing a hat from another team, that has been blacked out, or no hat at all. Roger Nelson is clearly wearing a Chicago White Sox uniform. The Royals star that year, Lou Piniella, was featured on the Seattle Pilots 1969 Rookie Stars card, his acquisition coming so late that Topps was unable to show him as a Royal. There was also a card of a pitcher named Dennis Ribant. Never heard of him before or since.

1970 – This set featured 29 Royal cards, including their first team card. Most of the players are in Royal uniform, with the exception of Piniella, Bill Butler, Pat Kelly, manager Charlie Metro and the newly acquired Amos Otis.

1971 – The 1971 set featured 35 Royals including the Rookie card of Paul Splittorff and the first Royal card of Cookie Rojas. This was the first set to feature the players autograph on the front of the card and several of the cards had pictures of the player taken “in action”. Most of these early years featured a player who would invariably play very little for the team, if at all, now hereby known as Mr. Irrelevant. In 1971, there were three of them, a first baseman named John Matias, an outfielder named George Spriggs and an infielder named Rich Severson. The Topps photographer and staff would try to guess which players might make the roster and make cards of them. If they guessed wrong, you ended up with a card of some guy playing in Omaha.

1972 – This set, with an attractive psychedelic font, featured 33 Royals. The 1972 set was massive, 787 cards total, and in those days the cards were issued in series, with the first series issued in the spring while the last series or two would be issued in the late summer. This created a problem with collectors as many stores would stop carrying baseball cards in August and move on to football cards. Consequently, the later series, the high number cards, would be hard to find and are now more valuable due to that scarcity and the 1972 set was one of those sets. The 1972 Royals set featured the debut card of John Mayberry. In a strange twist, there was also a Royals card for Jim York and Lance Clemons, the two players traded for Mayberry.

1973 – Topps went back to their standard 660 card set in 1973 and the Royals had 26 cards in the set. The design of the set was mostly uninspiring, except for an awesome card of “Freddie” (not “Fred”) Patek turning a double play. This was the first year that Topps’ graphic artist tried their hand at painting a KC on the cap of newly acquired Royals. Wayne Simpson got a card, but Hal McRae, acquired in the same trade, did not. This years Mr. Irrelevant was an infielder named Jose Arcia.

1974 – the 1974 set, also 660 cards, featured 28 Royals including the first-year card of Steve Busby. The set also featured the last card of original Royal Lou Piniella. Eight of the Royals were sporting mod mustaches, including Paul Splittorff and one of my favorite Royals, Dirty Kurt Bevacqua. Mr. Irrelevant was another infielder acquired in the off-season, Fernando Gonzalez.

1975 – Another 660-card set, but only featured 24 Royals. This was a good-looking set with bright colors. Topps went back to the autograph after a three-year hiatus. The 1975 set featured the rookie cards of Al Cowens, Frank White and George Brett, which became the most valuable card in the set. Amos Otis was featured in the first card which had a picture taken in Royals Stadium. Previously, most of the pictures used in the cards were taken in spring training or at other ballparks, usually Yankee Stadium. Topps was also getting better at managing the roster, as there was no Mr. Irrelevant in 1975.

1976 – Sticking with the 660-card set, Topps cut the Royals down to 23 cards in 1976. This set featured the first-year card of Dennis Leonard and a comical repainting of off-season acquisition Dave Nelson’s hat. With only 22 players featured (plus one team card) there was no Mr. Irrelevant for the second year in a row.

1977 – The 1977 set featured 25 Royals out of the 660-card set and included the first-year card of John Wathan. George Brett got two cards in this set. Mr. Irrelevant came back in the body of a pitcher named Ken Sanders. The set also featured the only Royal card of one of the all-time great hitters, Tommy Davis and the first Royal card of Larry Gura.

1978 – Topps expanded the 1978 set from 660 to 726, but only gave the 102-win Royals 27 cards. The set itself is kind of utilitarian and bland but did feature the first Royal card of Darrell Porter. There was no Mr. Irrelevant, as everyone in the set played a role on the 1978 team. The set also featured the last Royal card of John Mayberry.

1979 – Topps stayed with the 726-card set and once again gave Kansas City 27 entries. This was an attractive, somewhat undervalued set by design, and it featured several first-year cards such as Al Hrabosky and the rookie cards of Clint Hurdle, Rich Gale, Willie Wilson and U.L. Washington. Unfortunately, U.L. was not chewing on his toothpick when his picture was taken. No Mr. Irrelevant for the second year in a row.

1980 – This set featured 28 Royals (out of another 726-card set) and was a nice clean design as Topps brought back the autograph. The set featured the rookie card of Dan Quisenberry and the last Royal card of Steve Busby. Mr. Irrelevant returned as a pitcher named Eduardo Rodriguez.

1981 – The Royals got 28 cards once again in 1981 including a Brett brothers combo, George and Ken. Willie Wilson got two cards in this set and U.L. got one with a toothpick. Topps unfortunately went back to trying to paint the KC on hats with once again comical results. It’s amazing to see how graphics have advanced since the 1970’s and ‘80’s. No Mr. Irrelevant in 1981. Topps lost their monopoly on baseball cards in 1981 when Donruss and Fleer put out their first sets.

1982 – Topps went crazy this year and expanded the set to 792 cards. The Royals got 34 of those, including two more of the Brett brothers and a trio later known as the cocaine cowboys: Willie Aikens, Vida Blue and Jerry Martin. Pitcher Mike Jones was featured on a rookie card for the second year in a row and Mr. Irrelevant returned with pitcher Dave Frost.

1983 – The year of “The Pine Tar Game.” Topps stayed with their monster 792 card sets and Kansas City got 33 cards. It was a strange card design with two pictures of the player on the front of the card. Several Royals got two cards: Brett, Gura, Quisenberry, Wathan and Lee May. Dave Frost got a card, and Mr. Irrelevant for the second year in a row, as he didn’t play a single inning for the 1983 team.

1984 – This is the first year I noticed that Topps was getting cheap on the cards. The cardboard was a little thinner and not as glossy as past years. In the 792-card set, Kansas City got a new high of 37 cards, including the rookie card for Bret Saberhagen. It also had the first Royal card of Steve “Bye-Bye” Balboni and the last Royal card of Paul Splittorff. Topps stayed with the two pictures on the front design. No Mr. Irrelevant in 1984.

1985 – A must have set for Royal fans, if only because of the first World Series title. Topps issued 792 cards again and Kansas City got 30 of them. The cards design was basic. Dan Quisenberry got two cards and it appears that Topps used the same photo for both cards. The set featured the rookie card of Mark Gubicza. There was no Mr. Irrelevant, though I thought Butch Davis might take the mantle. Turns out Mr. Davis had an eight-year career with five teams.

1986 – The Royals came in with 32 cards in the 1986 set of 792. This was a boring card set. I can’t even think of anything to say about the set. There were no rookies to speak of and Mr. Irrelevant would fall to Mike LaCoss, who pitched in 21 games that summer.

1987 – Finally the last year in the book. The Royals got 32 of the 792 cards in the set. The design was very different, with a wood grain border. There were several significant cards in this set: The last card for Dick Howser and the last card of Hal McRae as a player. The set also included the rookie cards of Kevin Seitzer and Bo Jackson. I was going to award our final Mr. Irrelevant to Argenis Salazar. Then I checked his baseball reference page and realized he went by the name of Angel Salazar and played 233 games for the Royals.

So, there it is, the first 19 years of Royals baseball cards all packed into one small book. If you have any special baseball card memories, share them with us.hist

Ted Lyons Jersey White Sox

The Chicago White Sox have 60 players in spring training this year, consisting of the entire 40-man roster plus 22 non-roster invitees. So you can discern who everyone is without a Glendale souvenir stand scorecard, here’s a numerical list of all players and members of the coaching staff who’ll appear in camp. The list includes White Sox retired numbers, so you can see the complete numerical progression.

Players on the 40-man appear as normal text. Coaches appear as small text. Retired numbers are bolded. Non-roster invitees are in italics.

This update adds Ervin Santana, Preston Tucker, and a new number for Russell Delgado.

2 Nellie Fox

3 Harold Baines

4 Luke Appling

5 Yolmer Sánchez

6 Charlie Lau (unofficial; has been used only once — by Lau’s hitting coach disciple, Walt Hriniak — since Lau’s death in 1984)

7 Tim Anderson

8 Daryl Boston (first base coach)

9 Minnie Miñoso

10 Yoán Moncada

11 Luis Aparicio

12 Nick Capra (third base coach)

14 Paul Konerko

15 Adam Engel

16 Ted Lyons

17 Yonder Alonso

18 Daniel Palka

19 Billy Pierce

20 José Rondón

21 Welington Castillo

22 Charlie Tilson

25 Randall Delgado

27 Lucas Giolito

28 Leury García

29 Curt Hasler (assistant pitching coach)

30 Nicky Delmonico

31 Todd Steverson (hitting coach)

32 Preston Tucker

33 James McCann

34 Michael Kopech

35 Frank Thomas

36 Ricky Renteria (manager)

37 Juan Minaya

38 Ryan Goins

39 Aaron Bummer

40 Reynaldo López

41 Kelvin Herrera

42 Jackie Robinson (retired by MLB)

45 Jon Jay

46 Iván Nova

46 Greg Sparks (assistant hitting coach, unsure of new number)

47 Joe McEwing (bench coach)

48 Alex Colomé

49 Ryan Cordell

50 Thyago Vieira

51 Carson Fulmer

52 Ian Hamilton

53 Caleb Frare

54 Ervin Santana

55 Carlos Rodón

56 Mark Buehrle

57 Jace Fry

58 Manny Bañuelos

59 Evan Marshall

60 Jordan Stephens

61 Ryan Burr

62 Kodi Medeiros

63 Dylan Cease

65 Nate Jones

66 José Ruiz

68 Dylan Covey

70 Donn Roach

71 Jordan Guerrero

72 Carlton Fisk

73 Luis Basabe

74 Eloy Jiménez

75 Colton Turner

76 Seby Zavala

77 Micker Adolfo

78 Zach Thompson

79 José Abreu

80 Bernardo Flores

81 Jimmy Lambert

84 Matt Skole

85 D.J. Peterson

86 Zack Collins

87 Danny Mendick

88 Luis Robert

89 Alfredo González

90 Blake Rutherford

91 Luis González

92 Nick Madrigal

93 Nate Nolan

99 Don Cooper (pitching coach)