One of the biggest sellers so far this trade season have been the Chicago White Sox. They have already dealt away starting pitchers Lucas Giolito and Lance Lynn, as well as relief pitchers Joe Kelly and Reynaldo Lopez. But it doesn't seem like they are done there.
Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic recently reported that the White Sox are "listening on everyone", including the likes of ace starting pitcher Dylan Cease and All-Star centerfielder Luis Robert Jr. With these reports coming out, Our FanSided friends at Southside Showdown came out with their very own trade packages that would send Cease to the O's. Let's evaluate the three trades they came up with, and then create a few of our own in response.
Southside Showdown Trade Packages
The first trade created by Southside Showdown would send the #1 prospect in all of baseball to the White Sox, along with 3 other prospects for Dylan Cease. Although Cease is certainly valuable, I can't imagine the Orioles would seriously consider this. Jackson Holliday is a budding superstar and is only 19 years old. He's too important to the Orioles future to be in any trade package.
This package would send 2 of the Orioles top 5 prospects and former top 10 overall prospect Grayson Rodriguez to the Sox. Once again, I don't think the Orioles would be willing to do this. Cease is a great pitcher, but he's having a down season compared to 2022 and he's in line to get a huge contract in the next couple of seasons.
I think the Orioles would rather hold onto Rodriguez and bet that he'll turn into a Dylan Cease-type player then trade him along with Colton Cowser and Joey Ortiz. Cowser currently is ranked as the 12th best prospect in all of baseball according to MLB pipeline and Ortiz is ranked at 61. I think this offer would be a bit too rich for the O's. Trading two top 100 prospects and one recently graduated top 100 prospect? Hard pass.
Similarly to Jackson Holliday, Gunnar Henderson is simply too important to the Orioles future to be included in any trade. He's in the thick of the A.L Rookie of the Year race and has become a staple of the Orioles organization at just 22 years old. Cease would be a big upgrade to the Orioles rotation, but I don't think there's any chance the O's would give up Henderson for him. Westburg and Tavera could realistically be included, but Henderson is a non-starter in trade talks.
My Potential Trade Packages
With this deal the White Sox would be getting two top 100 prospects in Westburg (#30) and Connor Norby (#64), as well as McDermott and McKenna. I think this would be an appealing option for the White Sox because they would be getting four players who are all ready for the majors (or at least close).
Westburg is currently with the Orioles major league club and has looked impressive so far. He's slashing .253/.309/.413 with 1 homerun and 8 RBI's in 24 games. He's showcased his slick defensive skills at both second base and third base and also has impressive speed. Norby would most likely be in the majors if he played for any other team, but since the Orioles have such a crowded infield, he's stuck in Triple A for now.
He's been awesome at triple-A Norfolk, posting an OPS of .825 with 14 homeruns. McKenna has been a rotational outfielder for the Orioles over the past few seasons but has shown potential thanks to his great speed and defensive ability. The deal would round out with the hard-throwing Chayce McDermott, who was recently promoted to Triple-A Norfolk as well.
Could the Orioles make any of these trades for Dylan Cease?
This package would present a different outlook for the White Sox compared to my first offer. This package consists of some high-upside, high-risk players. Joey Ortiz is the safest prospect in this deal thanks to his unreal slash line of .349/.399/.573 at Triple-A. Ortiz has spent some brief time with the major league club this season which has been met with mixed results.
At the very least, Ortiz presents an elite defender who has the potential to be a gold glove caliber shortstop with great contact skills at the plate. He ranks as the fifth-best Orioles prospect and the 61st best in all of baseball.
The rest of the package would present some more risk. For starters, the Sox would be getting Samuel Basallo. Basallo is an 18 year old catcher who's currently in Single-A. He projects to be a very strong athlete at the catcher position with a cannon for an arm. He's had a great season with the Shorebirds to this point, posting an OPS just under .900 with 12 homeruns. Hall and Stowers are two high upside players who have struggled with injuries and poor play recently.
Hall, a left handed pitcher with elite stuff, suffered an injury earlier in the season and has had some issues during his recovery period. As for Stowers, you're getting a left handed corner outfielder with elite power. Stowers has struggled to make the transition to major league pitching so far, but could be a 20+ homerun player if he unlocks his potential.
Although I think it's unlikely the Orioles make a trade for Dylan Cease, they do have the prospect capital to make a trade happen. Cease would be a massive addition to the Orioles rotation and would be the ace that the team needs come playoff time. If Mike Elias decides to change his ideology and gets aggressive at the deadline, maybe a trade for Cease could be in play.