Remember when Jerry Reinsdorf said he owed it to the fans for the White Sox to have a quick turnaround during Chris Getz’s introductory press conference? Well, it turns out actions speak louder than words.
After letting arguably the best broadcaster in the game leave for a division rival because Reinsdorf allegedly didn’t find him funny or want to pay him what he was worth, Dan Hayes of The Athletic reports that the White Sox are unlikely to match franchise record mark the team spent in 2022. He added that they could even scale back from the 2023 payroll.
Getz told reporters during the GM meetings that there is “no set payroll” but according to Hayes multiple league sources believe the White Sox will reduce spending.
In 2022 the White Sox total payroll was just over $203 million, which was the seventh highest in the MLB. The White Sox slashed that payroll by roughly $12 million in 2023. According to Spotrac, the team’s total payroll was around $162.8 million with a total of $181 million on the books. That placed the White Sox just below the league average with the 15th-highest payroll in the MLB.
A decrease in attendance due to an abysmal on-field product may be the deciding factor in the decision. As Hayes put it:
The reports that the White Sox will not increase sending will make life difficult for first-year general manager Chris Getz. Getz is tasked with overhauling a roster that lost 101 games and has holes in the starting rotation, bullpen, shortstop, second base, right field, and catcher. Turning the team into a contender with that amount of holes is nearly an impossible task with a tighter budget.
Getz has already admitted that he does not like the team as currently constructed. During the GM meetings in Arizona, he bluntly told reporters “I don’t like our team.” He aims to get the White Sox more athletic and better defensively. However, he may not have the resources to do so in a single offseason.
Getz will have some money to play with. The front office recently freed up $14 million by declining Tim Anderson’s 2024 team option. They also declined to pick up Liam Hendriks’s $15 million option and instead will make deferred payments of $1.5 million a year for ten years, which also gives Getz slightly more flexibility.
The White Sox only have $84.5 million tied up for next season. After arbitration, that number could increase to anywhere between $99-$102 million. Given the White Sox 2023 payroll that will leave Getz with around $80 million to play with.
Getz has also acknowledged that nobody is untouchable and could look to shop players like Dylan Cease to fill some of the holes on the roster. But seeing that the 2022 Cy Young runner-up is the only reliable starter in the rotation, that may not be a feasible solution.
Buckle up White Sox fans things could get a lot worse before they get better.