Chicago White Sox: This Lucas Giolito stat is alarming
Chicago White Sox ace Lucas Giolito turned in another forgettable performance on Sunday afternoon. The tall right-hander went 5.1 innings giving up two runs, one of them earned, struck out eight, and walked three. Not a terrible outing by any means but Giolito failed to go at least six innings for the fourth time in six starts. That is not what you expect from your ace of the staff.
The White Sox would go onto lose that game 5-0. This brings the White Sox record to 1-5 when Lucas Giolito starts. It is problematic when your team has that bad of a record when your best pitcher takes the mound. Just ask the New York Mets. Unlike Jacob deGrom in New York, Giolito has been part of the problem.
Giolito has only one quality start this season. That came against Cleveland where he threw seven scoreless innings. He has a 4.99 ERA and was directly responsible for the White Sox loss in Boston where he gave up eight runs and failed to make it to the second inning. He has also walked multiple batters in all but one start. Giolito has been especially bad on the road where he has a 9.26 ERA in three starts and is allowing opponents to hit .280 off of him.
This is not to say it is all his fault. The numbers were inflated during a game against Detroit where he pitched well but Tony La Russa left him in far too long which ruined his quality start. He is also striking out batters at a high rate which tells you his stuff still plays. He has had at least seven strikeouts in every start but one which was the Boston disaster.
If Giolito wants to still be considered the ace of the staff he needs to go deeper into games. The White Sox bullpen has been put under a tremendous amount of stress in April because of the starter’s inability to go deep into ball games. Giolito is only averaging slightly above four innings per start which is not going to cut it down the road.
Lucas is a good pitcher. There is a reason he was an All-Star in 2019 and finished top-seven in the Cy Young voting for two consecutive seasons. This trend of losing games is something that is uncharacteristic for the 26-year-old. In 2019 he was the first 10 game-winner in the Majors. There is still plenty of time to right the ship and Giolito has all of the tools to do just that. He needs to step up sooner rather than later if the White Sox want to reach their championship aspirations.