The Chicago White Sox need Ethan Katz to make a big impact on their two prized young pitchers.
The Chicago White Sox have an abundance of young talent right now. Their rebuild is complete and now it is about supplementing the new core they have built and developing more young players along the way. We know about their starting lineup and how good they are at hitting. Of course, pitching to help that great offense win games is so important. Lucas Giolito, Lance Lynn, and Dallas Keuchel are going to be the “big three” in their rotation but a few young guys are going to round it out.
There are a lot of expectations on Dylan Cease and Michael Kopech. They were both the “second piece” in trades that the White Sox made for their top two pitchers. Cease came from the Chicago Cubs in the Jose Quintana trade and Kopech came from the Boston Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade. Each of them has reached the MLB but is at a little bit different of a pace right now.
Cease made his MLB debut in 2019 and Kopech in 2018. The thing with Kopech is that he hasn’t pitched in a professional game since the end of 2018 because of Tommy John surgery. Kopech also opted out of the 2020 season that was shortened because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The White Sox announced earlier that they have hired Ethan Katz to be their pitching coach. He has been a great person at developing pitchers for a while now. Most notably, in this case, is how he has helped Lucas Gioltio turn his career around. He was Giolito’s high school coach first but then helped him after his awful 2018 season.
Going into 2020, the hope is that Katz does the same thing for both Kopech and Cease. They, like Giolito, are incredibly talented young players that just need to take that big step to superstardom. Katz should be able to help them reach that level. He has already gotten them on new throwing programs which should really improve their game. As talented as they are, they both need some help taking advantage of their skills.
Cease has already shown some improvement over his two MLB seasons. For Kopech, despite not pitching in a pro game for a while, he might have the highest ceiling of anyone in the organization. He can throw the ball in the triple digits and get it to move while going that fast. When these two reach that potential, the White Sox are going to be one of the best teams in the game. Hopefully, Katz is able to have the same impact on them that he did on Lucas Giolito.