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 against the Dodgers, sat down in the home dugout at Guaranteed Rate Field and watched.
Speculation surrounding a potential deal to send Frazier to the Red Sox or Yankees jumped up a notch with the scratch. Sox closer David Robertson and setup man Tommy Kahnle were also rumored to be in possible deal with the Yankees, according to multiple reports.
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 trade 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.”
By the second inning, Frazier and Robertson were both gone from the Sox dugout, with rumors swirling.
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.