Could Baltimore's injuries influence Cease's trade market?

February 16th, 2024

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- White Sox general manager Chris Getz had not heard from the Orioles when he talked to the media around noon on Thursday at the back fields of Camelback Ranch.

That situation potentially could change with Baltimore’s Kyle Bradish being diagnosed with a right UCL sprain and set to open the 2024 season on the injured list. There's also left-hander John Means, who is sitting a month behind other Orioles’ starters after a left elbow problem last postseason. Baltimore has pitchers who could complete the rotation behind Corbin Burnes, Grayson Rodriguez and Dean Kremer, but the team also has the loaded Minor League system to re-engage the White Sox on .

Getz wanted to give Cease advance notice if a trade was imminent, as Cease mentioned on Wednesday. There’s also no need for Getz to provide an update on every trade tidbit or rumor to keep the even-keeled Cease at ease.

“I’ve said this many times: I don’t worry about Dylan Cease just because of the makeup of the pitcher,” Getz said. “I know that every day it’s about sharpening his craft and trying to get better. I know that he had a tremendous offseason.

“He’s had some triceps soreness in the past, and to go through an offseason without any sort of small hiccup, I know he’s well positioned for the season and he’s going to prepare for Opening Day. At this point, it looks like it’s going to be with the White Sox.”

Cease seemed amused by the early nature of his Opening Day starter nod from manager Pedro Grifol, adding he feels like it’s something that still needs to be earned and how he’s really not thinking that far ahead. Getz, meanwhile, hasn’t wavered from focusing on the good of the team overall where trades are concerned.

“I've got to look at the greater health of the organization,” Getz said. “If there's an opportunity that presents itself to make our Major League club good this year, but also years to come, then we've got to consider stuff like that. In regards to outside interest, that can be dictated by a lot of different things.

“You speak of injuries that may happen or lack of productivity with other clubs, that could be a factor. Dylan is an important piece of this organization and he's preparing well, but we're open-minded whether it be Dylan or anyone else, if we feel like we can help the organization both short-term and long-term."

The Moose is loose

There’s certainly familiarity between Grifol, Getz and Mike Moustakas, the newest White Sox addition via a Minor League deal and non-roster invite, as the trio won a World Series title with the Royals in 2015.

“He's a winner. He's a proven winner,” Grifol said. “And he's always been a winner. I mean, he's been a winner since he was in high school. To add that edge and that pedigree -- that championship pedigree -- to the clubhouse and having him come in here and compete for a job I think is really good for us.”

“To have someone of his pedigree -- he’s been to two World Series, he’s won a World Series, he’s been an All Star. So to have him come in here and be around the guys and compete for a spot, it seemed like a very obvious move to make,” Getz said. “Excited to have him be part of this group.”

It’s too early to talk about Moustakas’ potential role with the left-handed infielder having to show his value.

“Knowing Mike, when he has something to truly prove, he wants to prove that he can still go out there and be a productive Major League player,” Getz said. “Knowing that he has that baked into his mindset right now, I felt like this was a good idea.”

Take a chance

The idea of making the most of Spring Training opportunities has been stressed early in White Sox camp.

“I’m excited about it. We just had a nice meeting about opportunity, actually,” said White Sox starter Michael Soroka, who came over in a trade with Atlanta. “Obviously, we’re changing a few things, and that’s one thing skip made a point of letting us all know, that there’s a lot of opportunity on the table here. I’m one of the players that’s looking to take advantage.”