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Hahn mum on any White Sox-Machado talks

Chicago unlikely to compromise strong farm system for one year of star's services
MLB.com @scottmerkin

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- White Sox general manager Rick Hahn would not comment on his team's trade pursuit of Baltimore third baseman Manny Machado during Thursday morning's media session on the final day of baseball's 2017 Winter Meetings.

Hahn wouldn't comment on whether Chicago had made the best offer for Machado, as some reports have indicated. He actually wouldn't even acknowledge if talks had taken place between the two teams.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- White Sox general manager Rick Hahn would not comment on his team's trade pursuit of Baltimore third baseman Manny Machado during Thursday morning's media session on the final day of baseball's 2017 Winter Meetings.

Hahn wouldn't comment on whether Chicago had made the best offer for Machado, as some reports have indicated. He actually wouldn't even acknowledge if talks had taken place between the two teams.

But he certainly was willing to stress six or seven times during a 12-minute interview how the team has not wavered from a rebuild goal of putting itself in the best position for the long term with each move they make.

"Nothing has changed in terms of what we are trying to accomplish," Hahn said. "We're very interested in adding premium young talent to what we've already built, but at the same time we're not going to rob Peter to pay Paul, if that makes sense.

"We are headed towards a bright future. We want to make moves that are going to enhance that, not necessarily take away from it."

Video: IT discusses if White Sox should go after Machado

So what does this comment or Hahn's overall interview theme mean in terms of a potential Machado acquisition?

Don't look for any of the top prospects amassed by the White Sox over the past year, such as right-handed pitchers Michael Kopech or Lucas Giolito, to be included in a deal for a player with one year remaining of contractual control. The White Sox did not work diligently over the past year and beyond to assemble a critical mass of young talent only to cut into it for the potential chance of having a leg up on signing Machado before or even shortly after he reaches free agency.

Video: Footer discusses Machado to White Sox rumors

At 25 years old and considered a generational sort of elite talent, Machado certainly fits the White Sox overall rebuild gameplan. But at what cost are they willing to add him in the present.

"Now we may take some calculated risks along the way," Hahn said. "We repeatedly said we are going to be opportunistic in this market and explore opportunities to make us better.

"However the goal again remains putting us in the best position for the long term. Nothing in the last few days or the last year-plus has been done with the intention of deviating from that long-term vision."

Video: Hahn feeling no pressure, pleased with progress

As far as Winter Meetings rumors go, Hahn pointed out most of their trade news in the past year came from the team and didn't play out following advanced leaks. The White Sox find themselves in a development phase of the rebuild, requiring patience as they try to figure out how these players fit and where needs will arise.

The White Sox possess the Minor League depth and payroll flexibility to acquire Machado and retain him long term, but they won't jeopardize a significant part of their future plans to make it happen.

"When it comes time to add to what we've accumulated or continue this process, it's going to be with the vision of putting ourselves in the position to contend for multiple championships," Hahn said. "In the end that's what's going to be more important: The ability to win championships than send messages."

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Manny Machado