WBEZ | Chicago baseball http://www.wbez.org/tags/chicago-baseball Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en What should the White Sox do this winter? Share your thoughts, baseball fans. http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2012-10/what-should-white-sox-do-winter-share-your-thoughts-baseball-fans <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/rsz_sox_fans-rain.jpg" style="width: 620px; height: 479px;" title="Some loyal Sox fans gave support no matter the outcome. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)" /></div><p>Have your say, Sox and Cubs fans: Where do you stand on what happened this year? What should your teams do now? Weigh in, and I&#39;ll pose some thoughts as well. Today we look at the Sox. On Friday, we&#39;ll take a look at the Cubs.&nbsp;Leave a comment on this post, tweet me @Crayestout or go to my Facebook page, <a href="http://www.facebook.com/CherylAtTheGame?fref=ts">Cheryl Raye-Stout #AtTheGame</a>.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Rookie Manager Robin Ventura&rsquo;s White Sox</strong></p><p>Do you look at the White Sox season as a success because they exceeded expectations? Or wass it a failure, getting oh-so-close to the post-season but not making it?</p><p>To me, it felt like the Sox ran out of gas. They had big contributions throughout but not enough when it counted &mdash; at the end. There were several individual successes but not in totality. I hate to say this, but to me the season was a failure. When you are in first place for three months, you try any way possible not to relinquish the top spot &mdash;especially when you are not a perennial play-off team.</p><p><strong>Free agents: To keep or not to keep? </strong></p><p>The team must decide the fate of three veteran free agents. Which ones, if any, should the Sox make an offer to keep for the 2013 season?</p><ul><li style="margin-left: 27pt;"><strong>A.J. Pierzynski</strong> The 35-year-old (36 in December)&nbsp;had a career year with home runs and is a manager on the field. Should the Sox hang on to one of the two remaining members of the 2005 World Series team or not?<br />&nbsp;</li><li style="margin-left: 27pt;"><strong>Jake Peavy </strong>The veteran pitcher has a year left at $22 million, or the Sox can opt out for $4 million. The team can still work out a deal if it can afford him. Peavy pitched over 200 innings and had little run support. Should GM Ken Williams take a chance and re-sign this oft-injured right hander?<br />&nbsp;</li><li style="margin-left: 27pt;"><strong>Kevin Youkilis </strong>The former Boston Red Sox third baseman was a shot in the arm when Williams acquired him, but he wilted as the season wound down. His situation is more dictated by what he wants to do; the Sox could buy out his $13 million contract next year for $1 million. Should they keep him or let him go?</li></ul><p>In my eyes, I think A.J. and Kevin are gone. Peavy may want to stay and he was a good anchor to very young pitching staff. But Tyler Flowers may finally get his chance to be the team&#39;s backstop: He will play winter ball this fall to get more at bats. As far as Youkilis goes, it never felt he was &quot;here&quot; &mdash; it seemed like he kept his suitcase packed the whole time.</p><p>There is one other personnel matter that the Sox may address this off-season: keep or trade pitcher Gavin Floyd for prospects? He stands to make $9.5 million next year if the Sox pick up his option; Floyd is an uneven year. This is a difficult decision; if the Sox trade him they will lose a lot of innings. He got a tip from coach Mark Parent that helped with his delivery at the end of the year, but it&#39;s hard to tell if his elbow problems were the main issue this year or not.</p><p>I&#39;d keep Floyd. With John Danks injured&nbsp;and Peavy&#39;s situation, the pitching rotation will be thin behind ace Chris Sale.</p><p><strong>What were your best and worst moments of the White Sox season?</strong></p><p>Here are mine:</p><p><strong>Best&nbsp;White Sox moment of 2012:</strong> Phil Humber&#39;s perfect game against Seattle &mdash; remember him?</p><p>Second best: Alex Rios breaking up a double play in the make up game against Detroit in late September.</p><p><strong>Worst White Sox moment of 2012:</strong> Elimination from the post season play afte holding on to first place for much of the season.</p><p>Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf and General Manger Ken Williams have some very tough decisions to make over the next several months &mdash; while they watch Detroit having a good post-season right now.&nbsp;Whatever happens this off-season may indicate whether the Sox want to contend again &mdash; or are just re-tooling. When you don&#39;t even have two million fans for a first place team . . . you have to wonder. A hefty payroll has to have a better fan support in 2013.</p><p>Friday on this blog the Cubs will take a turn at the plate.</p></p> Wed, 10 Oct 2012 05:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/cheryl-raye-stout/2012-10/what-should-white-sox-do-winter-share-your-thoughts-baseball-fans