When you look at the second half of the 2021 Chicago White Sox season, it is clear that there are some great pitchers on this squad. There are four or five guys that could claim the ace status and nobody would blink an eye. However, there is one guy that sticks out about the rest at this point.
Lucas Giolito has been the best pitcher on this team for a few years now and deserves the distinction of ace. Carlos Rodon and Lance Lynn each had slightly better seasons in 2021 but that doesn’t take away from Gioltio’s body of work in a White Sox uniform.
In 2018, as you’ve seen in the commercial, was the worst pitcher in baseball. He was the only White Sox pitcher that managed to reach 10 wins but he had an ERA of 6.13. He also led the American League with 90 walks and led all of Major League Baseball with 118 earned runs against.
From there, it looked like he was going to be a bust. The White Sox landed Giolito when he was the top pitching prospect in the world so seeing him struggle like that was very bad for the organization and the idea of the rebuild.
Lucas Giolito became the White Sox ace during the 2019 regular season.
Following that came 2019 where he turned into what he is today which is one of the best pitchers in the American League. In 2019 he was the sixth-place finisher for the Cy Young and he took off from there. He has had a top-11 finish or better ever since.
Since that very important 2019 season started, Giolito has a record of 29-21, a 3.47 ERA, 526 strikeouts, 1.076 WHIP, five complete games (three shutouts), and one no-hitter. Those are numbers of an ace pitcher on almost any staff.
There are only five or six pitchers in the game that have been consistently better than Giolito during that stretch. Most Major League Baseball teams in either league would want this guy at the very top of their rotation. The White Sox should be no different.
On Opening Day, Giolito should be the guy on the mound. He had a tough first few weeks of 2021 but he bounced back as nicely as you can in this league. It will be interesting to see if he is able to have a better start to the season this time around.
As mentioned before, his large body of work suggests that 2022 is going to be a monster year for him. With studs like Lance Lynn, Dylan Cease, and Michael Kopech around him, he should feel much less pressure and be the ace that this staff desperately needs.