Friday, September 21, 2012
Rick Hahn Will Have A Job To Do
When the news broke yesterday that Kenny Williams was going to become team president with Rick Hahn assuming general manager duties I said it caught me off guard. It did. Not because it was unexpected -- it was hinted at last winter -- but because I wasn't expecting to hear about it again until the offseason.
As were the White Sox based on the team's refusal to comment on it.
I also said that it was a big shakeup, but when I said that I didn't mean in the front office. Kenny may not be stirring the coffee, but he's still gonna have a say in the debate between Folgers and Maxwell House.
What I meant was the direction of the front office.
Kenny talked of a rebuilding project last winter but couldn't bring himself to actually do it. Not coincidentally, the talk of Kenny moving up the ladder began with the rebuilding discussion. It seems pretty clear that if this club is going to rebuild and start over, Williams really doesn't want to steer the ship. Rebuilding just isn't in his DNA.
So when I heard that Hahn would be taking over as general manager and said it was a major shakeup, I meant that, in my opinion, it signifies the rebuild we expected last winter will take place this winter.
And that's whether the Sox make the playoffs or not.
Frankly, unless the Sox win the World Series, I don't think there's any way to avoid it. There just isn't a free agent of Albert Pujols' caliber out there this winter that could keep an aging team with holes afloat.
Zack Greinke doesn't come to Chicago and immediately make the Sox a favorite. Especially given what we know will happen to Jake Peavy.
And while no fan ever likes to hear their favorite team is going to rebuild, we shouldn't be against it either. Let's be honest with ourselves. No matter how this season ends the White Sox gave us more than we could have reasonably hoped for.
Before spring it was "this team might have a chance if either Dunn, Rios, Peavy or Beckham bounce back." Well, all except Bacon bounced back -- and even he has been a benefit in the field -- and instead of a long season in which we were saying goodbye to all our old favorites in July, we've got an old fashioned pennant race.
A stressful, life-shortening, mind-numbing pennant race. There's nothing better.
So essentially this team gave us a free year, and looking at it as currently constructed, it's obvious this isn't a team built to last for multiple years. Just too many key parts on the wrong side of 30 with contracts coming to an end.
A rebuild is needed, and not just for cost-cutting reasons, though I'm sure we'll hear plenty about that this offseason.
I even have my own ideas on what this team should do to possibly speed up the rebuilding process, but I'm not sharing them now. No, that'll come after the season when Hahn officially becomes general manager.
Because that's what he'll be here to do: rebuild. And I'll be here to help -- even if nobody's asking.