White Sox: Bold Predictions for 2020 Starting Rotation
No. 5 Starter: Alec Hansen
CURRENT LEVEL: A, A+, AA
2017 SEASON: 11-8, 2.80 ERA, 141.1 IP, 191 SO
MLB ETA: 2019
The only pitcher on this list who was drafted by the White Sox front office, Hansen, possesses immense physical tools. The former second round pick by the Sox in the 2016 draft, was almost Colorado Rockies property instead of Chicago White Sox. Three years prior to the 2016 draft, the Rockies chose Hansen in the 25th round of the 2013 draft but Hansen chose to play at the University of Oklahoma and saw his stock immediately rise.
Charted at 6 feet 7 inches tall, Hansen was drafted with talk surrounding an almost triple-digit fastball and a tight breaking slider. Since being drafted, Hansen has a career 13-9 mark with a 2.39 ERA and an overpowering 12.5 K/9 rate over two full minor league seasons. Hansen was promoted to Double-A Birmingham in August of this year. He pitched just 10.1 innings at Birmingham and will almost undoubtedly begin his 2018 season in Double-A.
With his track record of high strikeouts already preceding him, it is to be expected that Hansen will only continue to breeze through minor league hitters until his eventual rise to the big league level at some point during the 2019 season. I have Hansen projected as the Sox number five starter, and not any higher than that, only because of his ceiling not being projected as high as the others that will eventually be on this list. Hansen’s dominance in the minors could easily translate to the majors and he can potentially slot in at any place in the future rotation of the Sox. but for now, Hansen will have to settle with being an incredibly talented number five starter on my list.