Why the White Sox Still Need to Trade Ace Dylan Cease? With spring training underway, one of the biggest outstanding trade candidates this MLB offseason remains Chicago White Sox ace right-hander Dylan Cease. Despite strong interest from contending teams, the White Sox have so far held onto their 28-year-old star pitcher who is two years away from free agency. Known for his remarkable talent and significant contributions to the team, Cease’s situation with the White Sox has sparked interest far beyond the usual baseball free picks, turning into a narrative rich with speculation, strategy, and the harsh realities of professional sports management.
Should the White Sox Trade Cease Before Opening Day?
There are compelling reasons why White Sox GM Chris Getz would be wise to pull the trigger on a Cease trade sooner rather than later. The White Sox are coming off a 61-win season and are still rebuilding. With Cease set to reach free agency after 2025, his trade value may never be higher as he has two full seasons of control left.
As talented as Cease is, he’s unlikely to pitch at a Cy Young level for the next two losing seasons in Chicago. Trading him now would net the biggest possible return that could accelerate the White Sox rebuild.
The White Sox Have No Reason to Keep Cease
The White Sox lost over 100 games last season and while they’ve made some minor upgrades, they still project to finish last in the AL Central in 2023. According to PECOTA projections, Baseball Prospectus forecasts the ChiSox to win just 66 games this season. FanGraphs is slightly more optimistic at 68 wins.
Either way, the White Sox are more than 20 games away from contention. Cease is coming off a career year and while he has intriguing upside, he’s posted a career 4.58 ERA and isn’t likely to dominate for a bottom-feeder team.
Cease also hasn’t proven himself to be a durable workhorse, hitting the IL in 2020 and 2021 before throwing a career-high 184.2 innings last season. If he reverts to previous performance and health levels, his trade value would dip.
With core players like Tim Anderson, Luis Robert, and Lance Lynn all over 30 years old, the White Sox competitive window doesn’t align with Cease’s team control. He’ll hit free agency before young prospects like Colson Montgomery, Bryan Ramos and Noah Shultz are ready to contribute at the MLB level.
Trading Cease is Chicago’s Best Path Forward
Rather than wasting Cease’s prime years on a rebuilding club, trading him now would help kickstart the next competitive window. Dealing Cease would let Getz cash in a major trade chip to add multiple high-upside prospects.
With two full seasons of control left, Cease’s trade value is maximized. Interested suitors like the Yankees, Dodgers, Mets and more would be willing to pay a premium price in prospects to acquire an affordable top-tier starter entering his age-27 season.
The White Sox already have an improved farm system featuring talents like Oscar Colas, Jake Burger, Ramos and Montgomery. Adding another haul of top prospects for Cease would give them a potential juggernaut system and bright future.
If Getz holds onto Cease hoping he boosts his value with a strong first half, he’d be taking a major risk. What if Cease gets injured or struggles? Then the White Sox would lose leverage and have to settle for lesser returns.
Trading Cease Now is a No-Brainer Move
With the White Sox rebuild ongoing, holding onto Dylan Cease doesn’t make competitive or financial sense. Cease is unlikely to sustain ace production for a non-contender. Chicago should maximize his value and deal him before the last remaining mystery team moves onto other options.
The Future is Bright After a Cease Trade
By trading Cease before Opening Day, Getz would set the White Sox up for a brighter tomorrow. Adding a big prospect haul to a system already on the rise would gear them up nicely for the late 2020s just as young talents like Montgomery and Shultz arrive.
Meanwhile, losing teams like the Pirates, Nationals and A’s have demonstrated recently that well-executed rebuilds can turn things around quickly. If Getz keeps supplementing a rising farm system with more premium talent, the White Sox could vault from 100 losses to playoff contention within two to three years.
The Bottom Line
With his trade value peaked, Dylan Cease doesn’t fit Chicago’s competitive timeline. By trading him now, GM Chris Getz would kickstart another phase of the rebuild. White Sox fans have endured enough misery over the past decade-plus. The sooner Getz cashes in his prime trade chip to inject more top-end talent into the system, the sooner this proud franchise can rise again.
As spring training games kick off, there are still impact players available for teams looking to bolster their rosters before Opening Day. For the latest MLB odds and free picks, be sure to check out a top-tier sportsbook online.