White Sox are “dark horse” for Stephen Strasburg
The Washington Nationals were once seen as almost guaranteed to retain World Series MVP and three-time All-Star pitcher, Stephen Strasburg.
However, that appears to have completely changed as Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports that the race to sign him has become a “wide-open scenario.”
With that being the case now, Morosi says that he sees the Chicago White Sox as a “dark-horse” suitor for the right-hander’s services.
His reasoning for saying that is the perceived aggressiveness that the team has had on the open market so far by signing Yasmani Grandal and re-signing Jose Abreu.
Strasburg, 31, is coming off one of the best years of his career as he tossed a career-high 209 innings while going 18-6 with a 3.32 ERA, 3.25 FIP, and 1.038 WHIP. Despite diminished velocity from when he first came up, Strasburg still managed to record 10.8 K/9 as compared to 2.4 BB/9.
The San Diego native went on to help lead the Nationals through the playoffs with a 1.98 ERA and 0.94 WHIP in six appearances (five starts).
There’s no question that Strasburg could help the White Sox tremendously if they were to sign him as he truly is one of the best pitchers in the game. Strasburg and Lucas Giolito would form a dynamic duo at the top of the rotation, essentially acting as options 1A and 1B.
Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez actually played with Strasburg in 2016 prior to the trade that sent both of them to the White Sox in exchange for Adam Eaton.
A signing of Strasburg would almost certainly ensure that another top-tier arm, Zack Wheeler, wouldn’t be joining the team. It appeared that their focus was on Wheeler prior to this report.
Wheeler is the far less expensive signing of the two as Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors predicted the right-hander would get a five-year, $100 million contract while Strasburg would get a six-year deal worth $180 million.
Both Stephen Strasburg and Zack Wheeler would be great additions to the Chicago White Sox rotation, but if Strasburg is really in play, they need to prioritize trying to sign him first.