White Sox will have a strong 2020 rotation
The signing of Dallas Keuchel helps ensure that the White Sox will not have rotation problems going into 2020.
While neither his nor Gio Gonzalez‘s decisions to move to the south side provides the team with a true ace or buzz around the rotation, both southpaws actually provide a lot of value for the White Sox heading into 2020.
It allows the team to enter the season with four well-established pitchers in Keuchel, Gonzalez, Lucas Giolito, and Reynaldo Lopez.
Giolito will obviously be serving as the anchor of this rotation in 2020, but having a former Cy Young winner like Keuchel right behind him will certainly take some pressure off Giolito even if the latter isn’t in that elite tier of starters anymore.
Lopez obviously wasn’t phenomenal for the team this past season, but over his two fulls seasons in the league, he’s proven to be a reliable innings-eater (372 2/3 innings in that span) and is only one year removed from registering a very solid 3.91 ERA.
He’s also shown some dominance at times early in his career with a complete-game one-hitter in early September against the Cleveland Indians being as shining of an example as any.
Gonzalez will likely slot in right behind him, although the order in a rotation doesn’t matter really. The left-hander has started 30 or more games in eight of the last 10 seasons which provides the team with another innings-eater.
Dylan Cease probably will start the season as the team’s fifth starter with Michael Kopech likely not quite ready for Opening Day after having Tommy John Surgery in September of 2018.
That’s actually a good thing even if Kopech is the more enticing option to put in that spot as it will allow him to not rush to get back to the team before Opening Day.
Carlos Rodon will likely join the rotation at some point in the second half as he is recovering from his own Tommy John Surgery.
The biggest advantage to their new starting pitching acquisitions and depth might be the fact that it is increasingly unlikely that they will have to see Ross Detwiler and Dylan Covey starting games for them this season.
Knowing that this team is potentially seven or even eight arms deep when Dane Dunning is major league ready is a huge plus.
Not many teams in baseball have this type of depth and the more the White Sox can avoid turning to fringe major leaguers for rotation help, the better.
While this team still might not have a top-10 rotation in baseball, these signings have made it easier to envision the 2020 season going smoothly for the White Sox at least in the starting pitching department.