Every winter, you see it.

A team makes a relatively inexpensive signing of an aging former superstar.  He may not be an everyday solution, but could put up some plate appearances at DH, get new life as a pinch hitter, or become a late-inning defensive replacement.

Jim Thome was that kind of a guy with the Twins last season.  Heck, the White Sox got 19 homers out of Andruw Jones in 2010.  Happens all the time.

Why isn’t it happening for former Chicago slugger Jermaine Dye?

The White Sox bought out Dye’s option after the 2009 season, and although he has professed a desire to put on a big league uniform again, he hasn’t.

The Cubs offered $3 million for his services, but no dice.  The Mariners were a team Dye was interested in, but they wouldn’t pony up $4 million for the season. 

All through the summer, here sat a guy who had hit 27 home runs the season before.  Not one club took a shot.  Was it ridiculous to think that a well-rested Dye could knock in some runs down the stretch?

There are players that had plenty worse years in 2009 still claiming a major league paycheck.  So why isn’t Dye one of those guys?

My only guess is that Dye is unwilling to take the field under anything but his own terms.

“I’m not going to a bad team, and I’m not playing for $1.5M,” Dye said last spring.

Thome signed for a similar number and became a hero in Minnesota.  He turned down $4 million from the Rangers to stay with the Twins.  Texas, along with San Diego and Colorado had the man on their radar last summer and might have liked to have his bat in September.  Dye, who has been representing himself, apparently didn’t find the money to his liking in 2010.  As a result, he sat while Thome ended up in a pennant race.

Dye has received interest from the Phillies, Rays and Rockies this winter, but at this time, he is still sitting.  It appears that that will remain to be the case unless the right club comes along and meets Dye’s asking price.

For $2 million, there are a host of clubs that could benefit from having Dye in their clubhouse.  He should be healthy with the time off.  If his timing hasn’t completely abandoned him, he could still hit 20 homers if given a full season of at-bats.  He was a settling presence in the White Sox locker room and could play the outfield in a reserve role, though his value may be higher as a DH.

Dye had a tendency to wear down, especially in his last season, but as a full-time DH and part-time player, would that be an issue?  If guys like Pat Burrell and Gabe Kapler can help a contending team, it stands to reason that Dye could pitch in for a contender.

I doubt that Dye’s future lies with the White Sox, as we have a right-handed DH.  However, it seems a bit sad that a guy who likely has some baseball left in him is finished after turning 35 in 2009.

Right now, Dye seems to be looking for the best possible deal.  Signing on his terms seems to be how Jermaine Dye wants to continue his major league career. 

Will we see him sign this winter and become one of those veteran success stories?

Or will Dye sit at home in 2011, along with his terms?

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