The setup man and closer roles are the most important for the Chicago White Sox.
The late-inning portion of the game is where the White Sox should shine the most as far as their bullpen. MLB Network called both Liam Hendriks and Aaron Bummer top ten relief pitchers during their offseason rankings. It is a dynamic duo that should help the White Sox win a lot of baseball games. If these two bring the stuff that we know they can in 2021, they shouldn’t lose too many games that they lead after eight innings.
Aaron Bummer dealt with a little bit of an injury bug in 2020. Because of the short 60 game season, it is hard to come back from that and really find your form. The funny thing is that he did do that. He was dominant in every way when he was healthy. He only managed 9.1 innings but had a remarkable 14 strikeouts, a 0.96 ERA, and a 1.071 WHIP. He is the perfect setup man for this team going forward.
What is a team lucky enough to get after Bummer exits? Liam Hendriks has been one of the best relievers in the game over the past two years. You know that when you upgrade from Alex Colome that you did make a good decision because he was also good for the White Sox. Most people see Hendriks as the best closer in baseball right now because he has been for the past two seasons. If he can carry that into 2021 and beyond, it will certainly cap off a good pitching staff.
Not everything is going to be perfect for the bullpen every day. There are going to be days where they blow a lead and potentially even lose the game for the Sox. They aren’t going 162-0 so that is okay. What matters is that they come in and shut the door a majority of the time. If that happens, we could be talking about an American League Central champion and possibly more.