The Chicago White Sox, after declining to trade outfielder Alex Rios in July, might not trade him in August, either.
Rios has been claimed on waivers, according to major-league sources, but the chances of a deal probably would have been greater if he had cleared.
The Texas Rangers are the claiming team, according to the Dallas Morning News. The deadline for the White Sox to trade Rios, dump him on the Rangers or pull him back from waivers is believed to be Friday.
The Rangers also pursued Rios before the July 31 non-waiver deadline. The question is whether they are willing to satisfy the White Sox with a trade offer when they would assume the balance of Rios’ $12.5 million salary this season, just under $4 million, plus an additional $15 million in salary and buyout in 2014.
Still, the Rangers have a clear need for Rios, thanks to the suspension of right fielder Nelson Cruz.
The suspension was without pay, so the Rangers will save more than $3.25 million in Cruz’s salary. What’s more, Cruz and outfielder David Murphy are free agents after this season, and Rios can fill one of their spots in 2014.
If the White Sox decline to trade Rios, it is highly unlikely they would put him on waivers a second time before the Aug. 31 deadline for setting postseason rosters. The next set of waivers would be irrevocable, meaning the Sox could lose Rios without getting anything in return.
More likely, the White Sox will pull Rios back if no trade is completed, then try to move him again this offseason, when they again could engage in discussions with every other club.