What should the White Sox Do with Mat Latos?
James Shields is here to replace someone. Mat Latos has finally come down to earth and luck is no longer on his side. Either Latos or Miguel Gonzalez will lose his spot in the rotation. The question is, do the White Sox send Latos to the bullpen or just release him?
The White Sox need a long reliever in the pen who can take the mound when a starter is injured or getting lit up. Those types of pitchers are important to the longevity of your arms.
We’ve seen the White Sox using their relievers for an inning every night. This causes the bullpen to get too tired and don’t pitch very well the next time out. The need is there, but can Latos fix it?
Barring anyone better coming along, it may be the White Sox only option. While Latos may succeed in this role, it’s very clear he isn’t starting material anymore. Latos is currently 6-2 with a 4.62 ERA (per baseball-reference). That is not that horrible for a fifth starter .
The problem for Latos is that Miguel Gonzalez has out pitched him to earn being the fifth starter. Gonzalez has been surprisingly good since his first two somewhat rough outings. The weird thing is, Latos manages to get wins. For whatever reason, the team seems to give him a good game all around. Jose Quintana longs for that kind of support.
The argument for releasing Latos still stands, and it could be a reality. The White Sox could easily go after a better long relief pitcher and let Latos move on with his life. Unless there is someone substantially better out there, the White Sox have to put him in the long relief/spot start role and hope he can perform when needed.
Shields is Shields, and he’ll give us some nice games and some bad games. I’m not particularly fond of the move, but it is an improvement. I would have liked to have seen the White Sox go after a bat, preferably a left-handed one. But as White Sox General Manager Rick Hahn seemed to have pointed out, this likely isn’t the end of their moves. Let’s sit back and see what happens. Hopefully, it doesn’t stay as ugly as it has been.