Hug watch was on, and Todd Frazier was hugging, though it was unknown whether the embraces were of the goodbye or motivational pregame variety.
Then the White Sox third baseman, a healthy scratch for Tuesday’s game, sat down in the home dugout at Guaranteed Rate Field and watched parts of the game with the Dodgers.
Speculation surrounding a potential deal to trade Frazier jumped up a notch with the scratch. Sox closer David Robertson and setup man Tommy Kahnle also were rumored to be in a deal with the Yankees and it all came to pass with the White Sox making the announcement after the 1-0 loss to the Dodgers.
When Robertson was approached before the game by the media, he said simply, “I’m still here.”
Frazier has been willing to talk about the possibilities, and he did again Tuesday.
“It’s ongoing,” Frazier said. “It goes on for a while until really something happens. It hasn’t really bothered me playing wise. I’m always going to keep playing the game hard.
“You wish everything could go in a simple manner and go as quickly as possible or just say it’s not going to happen. Right now we are not at that point.”
The deal meant the Sox had moved four of their most marketable trade pieces in a span of six days.
Frazier joined the White Sox from the Reds via a three-team trade in December 2015, in which the Sox sent Micah Johnson, Trayce Thompson and Frankie Montas to the Dodgers. Frazier hit .225 with 40 homers and 98 RBIs in 2016 and was hitting .207 with 16 homers and 44 RBIs this season entering Tuesday.
Robertson, who pitched the first seven seasons of his career with the Yankees, signed a four-year, $46 million contract with the Sox in December 2014, including $12 million in 2017 and $13 million in 2018. He entered Tuesday with a 2.70 ERA and was 13-for-14 on save opportunities.
The Sox acquired Kahnle from the Rockies in 2015, and he has had a breakout season with a 2.50 ERA, seven walks and 60 strikeouts in 36 innings through Monday.
The Sox started their trade-deadline dealing Thursday when they sent left-hander Jose Quintana to the Cubs for four prospects. That deal drove up the number of Sox prospects in Baseball America’s midseason top 100 to seven, and Rutherford makes it eight.
Meanwhile, the Sox had to combat Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw in the middle of the rumors. The Dodgers entered the two-game series on a nine-game winning streak, and Kershaw had earned a victory in each of his last seven starts and did so again Tuesday.
Sox right-hander Miguel Gonzalez, making his first start since June 14 after recovering from AC joint inflammation in his right shoulder, kept it close. He allowed only a first-inning run on Cody Bellinger’s RBI single over his six innings. He gave up five hits with five walks and five strikeouts and benefited from three double plays.
The Sox had seven hits against Kershaw but couldn’t send in the tying run over his first seven innings.