GLENDALE, Ariz. -- When the hype and hoopla faded away after last season's non-waiver Trade Deadline, the White Sox had made one deal while moving -- ever so slightly -- toward a rebuilding direction: Reliever Zach Duke was sent to the Cardinals in exchange for outfielder Charlie Tilson.The White Sox
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- When the hype and hoopla faded away after last season's non-waiver Trade Deadline, the White Sox had made one deal while moving -- ever so slightly -- toward a rebuilding direction: Reliever Zach Duke was sent to the Cardinals in exchange for outfielder Charlie Tilson.
The White Sox have since gone full-on rebuild, moving staff ace Chris Sale to Boston in exchange for infielder Yoan Moncada, outfielder Luis Basabe and pitchers Michael Kopech and Victor Diaz, and sending outfielder Adam Eaton to the Nationals for pitchers Reynaldo Lopez, Lucas Giolito and Dane Dunning.
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Even though the full rebuild is underway and the club continues to listen on new ace Jose Quintana, the Sox may be quiet at the Trade Deadline once again. Then again, maybe not.
"It could happen that way, conceivably," said general manager Rick Hahn during a recent conversation with MLB.com. "Probably less likely."
The White Sox now have a clear-cut path -- trying to put together a critical mass of top young talent to build sustainable success -- and their situation has changed contractually, too, with veterans Melky Cabrera, Todd Frazier and Player Page for David Robertson.
"We have more players in the last year of their contract than we did a year ago, or the last two years of their contract," Hahn said. "Certainly on paper, people will project us to be one of the more active clubs. Again it will be based upon the market for our players and ability to get what we feel is appropriate value."
That has been in evidence with the ongoing discussions surrounding Quintana. The White Sox are perfectly happy to keep the southpaw with the flawless mechanics, perfect delivery and huge competitive streak, not to mention club-friendly contractual control for four years, if their asking price isn't met. Quintana helps many teams, including the White Sox.
If that asking price is met, Quintana could be moved long before Aug. 1: He could potentially go before the season's outset if a team decides to meet the White Sox's demands. The same goes for Frazier, a power-hitting third baseman and solid clubhouse influence, or Cabrera or any other veteran who isn't projected to be part of the rebuild when the time comes for the White Sox to truly contend again.
Even first baseman Jose Abreu, who the team controls for three more years (including this one), could be had for the right price.
But again, the White Sox could be very quiet around the Trade Deadline. The return they are looking for might not be available. However, what's more likely is that the White Sox will already have made a number of moves before that date even arrives.
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.