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GM: White Sox's 2012 payroll set

CHICAGO -- Chicago White Sox general manager Kenny Williams said Friday on the first day of SoxFest that the club has no more money left to spend on payroll.


That means the club won't even be able to sign a utility infielder from the open market and will have to look in house for a backup shortstop.

"Tapped out," Williams said.

But he also said that the club is no longer looking to shed payroll.

"No, we don't have to trim," Williams said. "We've had opportunities. But what we've tried to do we've looked into opportunities if we wanted to go into a full rebuilding mode, opportunities that would give us some of the top talent in all of the minor leagues. Well, that didn't materialize. So you try to give yourself the best chance of winning with the current roster."

Youngster Eduardo Escobar and even utility man Brent Lillibridge will be considered for time at backup shortstop behind Alexei Ramirez. Williams said that even Osvaldo Martinez is a candidate. Martinez is one of the prospects the White Sox received from the Marlins as compensation for releasing Ozzie Guillen from his contract.

Williams remains confident the current roster can do some damage in the American League Central, but did say he "wasn't happy about" the Detroit Tigers signing Prince Fielder.

"Obviously, I felt better about [the roster] than a lot of the sentiment," Williams said. "I haven't paid a whole lot of attention to some of the offseason grumbling up until the past few days. But I like our team evidently a lot better than some others.

"We got a starting pitching staff that I'm confident in. We got a lot of bullpen options and a lot of young guys filtering in the starting rotation and the bullpen. We're going to need some bounce back from our veteran guys if we're going to compete."

Doug Padilla covers the White Sox for ESPNChicago.com.