Who has the best pitch on the Chicago White Sox staff?
Dylan Cease has been widely recognized as the Chicago White Sox pitcher with the most potential because of his raw talent. This is saying something since they have an arsenal of weapons in their pitching staff.
There is no shortage of nasty pitches either. Aaron Bummer’s sinker is incredible. Lucas Giolito has found a revolutionary way to use his changeup by elevating it in the zone. Micheal Kopech can fire a fastball at 100 mph and Liam Hendriks is nicknamed “South Slider” for his filthy wipeout pitch.
However, Dylan Cease’s slider may be the best pitch of the bunch. Cease led the White Sox pitching staff with 226 strikeouts. He was also in the top six percentile of all MLB pitchers in whiff percentage. His slider was a major reason why.
His slider is roughly 86 mph and has 38 inches of verticle drop. The horizontal break is amongst the top 28 percent in baseball while its location is in the top 31 percent. Cease’s has a spin rate of 2880. That is the highest spin rate of any slider in baseball.
Dylan Cease’s slider is the best pitch any Chicago White Sox pitcher has.
Of all the pitches in Dylan Ceases’s repertoire, he throws his slider 30.6 percent of the time. That is the second-most behind only his fastball. His slider also happens to be his toughest pitch to hit.
Opponents hit just .182 off it in 2020 and .176 off of it in 2021. His whiff rate when throwing the slider was a whopping 50.1%. That is the highest percentage of any pitch from any pitcher in the White Sox starting rotation. For comparison, opponents hit .218 off of Lucas Giolioto’s changeup and he posted just a 55.4 percent whiff rate when throwing it.
Cease also had a 43.1 K% when uncorking his slider. Even more astonishing is that Cease’s slider had a run value of -8. The run value measures the run impact of an event based on the runners on base, outs, and the count.
Corbin Burnes, who won the National League Cy Young in 2021, has a run value of -7 on his sinker which is his best pitch. If Dylan Cease can command the strike zone a bit better and learn how to go deeper into games, there is no telling how good he can be.
All the tools are in place. As a hitter, if you have to watch a 97 mph Cease fastball and then try to hit a sharp breaking slider afterward, you are going to be walking back to the dugout scratching your head more often than not.