Rios claimed on waivers by Rangers, but trade needs to be worked out

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The clock is ticking on a potential waiver-wire deal between the White Sox and Texas Rangers that would send Sox right fielder Alex Rios to the Rangers, although it only seems possible if Sox GM Rick Hahn lowers his asking price.

The Rangers claimed Rios on waivers and had 48 hours to work out a trade. One report had Hahn asking for pitchers Martin Perez and Luke Jackson and infielder Rougned Odor, which was too steep for Texas.

The Rangers need a bat and would take on the rest of Rios’ salary this season and $13 million for next year, unless the Sox agree to eat some of it. Rios’ contract comes with a $13.5 million club option for 2015.

The Sox could let Rios go for nothing – in the same way they got Rios from the Toronto Blue Jays on Aug. 10, 2009 — but they are not interested in shedding salary only. Rios is one of their top players and they will want something in return.

It’s common for players to be placed on waivers August, because teams can pull them back if they are claimed. If a player makes it through revocable waivers unclaimed, the player can be traded to any team.

Meanwhile, Sox backup outfielder Casper Wells was claimed on waivers and will join the Philadelphia Phillies. The Sox did not make a corresponding move, but the open roster spot opens a door, perhaps for red-hot outfield prospect Avisail Garcia.

The Sox won’t call up Garcia to be a backup, but if a Rios deal is worked out, things will fall nicely into place.

Garcia, acquired before the trade deadline from the Detroit Tigers in the Jake Peavy trade, has been outstanding at AAA Charlotte, and he is expected to be called up soon. He played for the Tigers in the World Series last season.

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