Money issues impacting possible trades

Updated: July 8, 2009, 12:55 AM ET
Associated Press

CHICAGO -- Chicago White Sox general manager Ken Williams said Tuesday he may not be able to make a big trade this season because of smaller crowds at U.S. Cellular Field.

Williams also said he is unsure of right-hander Bartolo Colon's location ahead of a planned rehab start for Triple-A Charlotte on Thursday. Colon is on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation in his left knee.

Williams nearly pulled off a significant trade in May, putting together a deal to acquire Jake Peavy from the San Diego Padres. But the 2007 NL Cy Young Award winner used his no-trade clause to torpedo the agreement.

Before Tuesday's 10-6 victory over the Cleveland Indians, the general manager cited slumping attendance as a reason the White Sox may not be able to pull off another big move that would add salary to the team's payroll.

"Well, if I'm being completely honest money is more of the issue now. We expected a little more support than we've gotten," he said. "I think it's a reflection upon the economy of what's kind of happen with regards to attendance and I don't know if we've played consistent enough, or been exciting enough for people to get behind us. We're still hopeful."

Chicago made a small trade Tuesday, acquiring reliever Tony Pena from the Arizona Diamondbacks for minor league infielder Brandon Allen.

"It just shows everybody in the clubhouse that he's out there trying to do what he can do to make this team better," White Sox starter Mark Buehrle said of Williams.

Chicago remained two games back of AL Central-leading Detroit, which beat Kansas City 8-5 at Comerica Park.

Williams noted weak attendance numbers during a three-game series with the Dodgers in late June, where the White Sox averaged 20,814 fans. The White Sox are averaging 26,147 this season, compared with 30,877 last year.

"We've been probably pretty short or a little aggressive in our projections and we might have to take a lot closer look at it, because, the Dodgers series was certainly an eye opener for us," Williams said.

Colon has been rehabbing his knee injury in Arizona and is supposed to pitch for the Knights in the finale of a three-game series against Norfolk.

"I know where he is supposed to be right now. He is supposed to be in Charlotte right now preparing to start what I believe is Thursday," Williams said. "Efforts to contact his agent have been successful, their efforts to contact his client have not been so successful."

Mitch Frankel, Colon's agent, did not immediately respond to a message and e-mail seeking comment Tuesday night. Colon, who won the 2005 AL Cy Young Award, is 3-6 with a 4.23 ERA this season.

"We'll see if he is in Charlotte on Thursday," Williams said. "If he is in Charlotte on Thursday and he starts, then we have him on the program that we want him to be on then he will be ready for the doubleheader, or at least be a candidate for the doubleheader on July 24 [against Detroit]. If he doesn't somebody will take the mound. Hey, this train is going to keep rolling."


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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