Sox downplay talk of acquiring Halladay
Talk radio and Internet blogs were abuzz Tuesday with speculation about a possible trade by the White Sox for one of baseball’s best pitchers, Toronto’s Roy Halladay.
Blue Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi said recently that he would consider offers for the 32-year-old Cy Young Award winner. And ESPN’s Peter Gammons and some Internet blogs speculated earlier Tuesday that the Sox might be interested, if they’re willing to give up such young talent as Gordon Beckham.
But manager Ozzie Guillen and GM Ken Williams pushed back on the speculation.
Asked if Halladay would be a good fit for the Sox, Guillen said, “He’s good on everybody’s team. I don’t know if he can fit in our pocket. That’s the difference between who needs him, who wants him and who can afford him. He’s nice. He’s one of the premier pitchers in the game. Meanwhile, I’m going to be realistic. To bring that guy here, to me one of the best pitchers in the game, we’ve got to give up a lot of things. And I don’t think we can do that.”
Williams said that although he couldn’t talk about specific trade rumors, the Sox weren’t interested in depleting their organization of young talent for a short-term benefit.
Williams conceded, though, that pitching would be one area the Sox looked at if they were to deal before the July 31 deadline.
Halladay has a no-trade clause in his contract, meaning he would have to approve any deal.
Bullpen help: Speaking of adding pitching, the Sox on Tuesday announced that they traded for right-handed pitcher Tony Pena from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for minor-league infielder Brandon Allen.
Pena was 5-3 with the Diamondbacks this season with a 4.24 ERA. He also had one save and eight holds in 37 relief appearances.
For his career, Pena, 27, is 16-13 with a 4.08 ERA with seven saves and 63 holds. He has limited right-handers to a .224 lifetime average and ranks fourth among all major-league relievers since 2007 with 61 holds, according to a news release announcing the trade.
Allen, 23, was hitting .282 with 16 doubles, eight home runs and 43 RBI in 62 combined games with Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte.
Missing in action? Asked if he knew where pitcher Bartolo Colon, slated to start in a rehab assignment Thursday for Triple-A Charlotte, was, Williams wasn’t sure.
“Actually, not exactly. I know where he’s supposed to be right now. He’s supposed to be in Charlotte right now preparing to start,” Williams said. “Efforts to contact his agent have been successful. Their efforts to contact their client [have] not been so successful. The bottom line is, if he’s out there and he’s ready to go on Thursday, and he shows a better mix of fast balls and breaking balls ... then he’s got a place here.”
Gobble gone: The Sox designated relief pitcher Jimmy Gobble for assignment Tuesday.
Gobble went 0-0 with a 7.50 ERA in 12 appearances this season.