Rumors have it that the Sox are in the running for Jorge Soler, the Cuban outfielder. A lot has been written about Yoenis Cespedes, who we missed out on. Can you tell us a little about what skills make him worth pursuing? Can you compare his skills to someone already in the "bigs"? If we win out, does he have any chance of playing this year? -- Peter; Dallas
Although it's awhile away, who should the Sox seek to accomplish in the upcoming draft? I think David Dahl looks pretty good at No. 13. -- Joshua S., Chicago
I like the scouting report on Dahl and the comparison to Colby Rasmus. The offseason trades replenished pitching in the farm system. Two players that intrigue me and might be available are Max Fried, a left-hander from Harvard-Westlake High School in Southern California who signed a letter of intent to UCLA and Stanford third baseman Stephen Piscotty.
But evaluations are fluid.
Do you think it would help if Dunn were to play in the field rather than simply be a DH? Perhaps it would allow him to get into the rhythm of the game and help his mindset. I don't know where he could play, but that's not my question. That seems to be the only difference between his time in the NL and now. I think he sits on the bench and lets negative thoughts into his head. -- Mark, Libertyville
The idea of playing Dunn more in the field was raised by a veteran National League scout who believe Dunn would get back to a routine that he was more familiar with in the NL. He thought it would work, especially since Konerko is getting older and could use more of a break as a DH.
I have been an unflappable White Sox fan all my life, but I have never been as upset as I have with Dunn situation. Has any player ever admitted that and done the right thing, like RETIRE on his own? This would save lots of money, allow the Sox to reload, and Dunn would still leave baseball wealthy and with his head up. -- Fred Goldman; Birmingham, Ala.
Adam has plenty to prove, so he's not going to walk away soon.
Gil Meche retired with about $12 million left on his contract with Kansas City a few years back.
Is Tyler Flowers a top-flight major league catcher? I know we have been told to be patient, but Pierzynski can't go on forever. -- Keek; Tucson, Ariz.
It's another test for Flowers and the Sox's staff to see if he can make enough improvement to handle the full-time duties in the future. This year will be interesting because Tyler won't be playing every day for the first time in a while.
What are your thoughts on the state of the White Sox farm system? Is it in as bad of shape as I've read about? Do you have any update on how Jared Mitchell looks and whether or not we can expect a sampling of him later this year (if and when the wheels come off) or starting in 2013? -- Mark Ott, New Lenox
I look at it somewhat differently because many of their top players were dealt in trades. I don't have a problem with the Sox moving Sale to the rotation, mostly because they don't have anyone better than Zach Stewart or Dylan Axelrod who could challenge Sale. They've added more infielders but need more power-hitting prospects.
Of this year's newly acquired prospects, which have the best chance to help the Sox this season? -- Wayne; Huntsville, Ala.
I would say Jhan Marinez and Simon Castro have a chance to help the bullpen.
If Sale shows limitations in starting role in spring training, how fast will the Sox switch him back to the bullpen? -- D. Loucks; El Paso, Tex.
I don't think he'll be rushed back to the bullpen quickly, primarily because they view him now as only a fifth starter while he builds up arm strength.
It seems the last four or five spring trainings under Ozzie Guillen the Sox finished with one of the worse records, and subsequently started slow out of the gate once the regular season started. I realize spring training is what it is, but there seems to be some correlation with their poor spring training records and their slow starts when the whistle blows. Therefore, maybe they need to start taking spring training a little more serious! Also, I heard that they are planning on keeping Rios in center. If they must play him, I think they'd be better off with him in left. -- Dan K., Chicago Ridge