Coming into spring training, the Chicago White Sox had an already loaded bullpen with the likes of Liam Hendriks, Aaron Bummer and Craig Kimbrel.
They went ahead and added some more depth and now it is thought that the White Sox have one of the best bullpens in the league. Having a top-end bullpen will help them win in 2022.
The guy who should be considered the leader of the group is Hendriks. The closer with an interesting personality is not only the best of the bunch but he’s also one of the best in the league when it comes to closing out games with a win.
This is evident due to the numerous awards and accolades he received last season for his performance on the mound. Hendriks earned honors such as being named to the 2021 All-Star game as well as being named 2021 AL Reliever of the Year.
This fiery competitor is a necessary piece to the White Sox’s bullpen and should have another spectacular season in 2022. In 2021, Hendriks played in a total of 69 regular-season games and had 38 saves. His era was 2.54 while his WHIP was .73 in 71 innings pitched.
The Chicago White Sox need the entire bullpen to step up in 2022.
Kendall Graveman is new to the White Sox having been picked up on November 30, 2021. He signed a three-year deal with Chicago for $24 million and appears poised to be a strong contributor.
Graveman likes to throw the sinker but can also throw several other pitches to keep batters guessing. Last season, he played with the Houston Astros for part of 2021 before becoming a free agent. He played in a total of 53 games with two teams (he also played for the Seattle Mariners to start the season).
He recorded a total of ten saves and four holds last year, all with the Mariners. His ERA with the Mariners was .82 while it was 3.13 with the Astros. Graveman’s WHIP was .70 in Seattle and 1.39 in Houston.
The White Sox picked up Craig Kimbrel in a trade with the Chicago Cubs last season and his tenure with the White Sox has been a little bit tumultuous. It is believed that the White Sox are looking for a trade partner to take Kimbrel and the money they owe him off their hands. As of yet, no one has stepped up to grab the ace closer.
Keeping Kimbrel might be ok but he didn’t perform too strongly with the Sox in 2021. Fans are clamoring for him to be moved rather than be kept. Kimbrel played in 24 games with the Sox last year following his arrival from across town. Kimbrel’s ERA was 5.09 while his WHIP was 1.22. He had one save and six holds.
Kimbrel’s future with the White Sox is cloudy at best. I wouldn’t look for him to be around that much longer as the Sox will find a willing trade partner and get him out of Chicago.
Garrett Crochet was with the Sox last year and played in 54 games total with three wins and five losses. His ERA was 2.54 while his winning percentage was .375. Crochet’s WHIP was 1.19 and he had 15 holds.
Look for Crochet to continue to be an important part of the Sox bullpen this year. He should see enough work that his stats are boosted. He is a strong pitcher with a lot of good qualities and should be able to help keep the Sox on a path towards the playoffs.
Joe Kelly is a newcomer to the White Sox and gives them an added dimension of strength in the bullpen. Kelley played with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2021 and is poised to have a strong 2022 in Chicago.
He played in 48 games last year and had two wins. He had an ERA of 2.86 and a WHIP of .98. He also had two saves and 13 holds. Kelly is a very good pitcher and can easily help the White Sox in their bullpen. Look for him to have a big year in his first year in Chicago and help the White Sox win several games.
Finally, there is Aaron Bummer. Bummer who has been with the Sox since 2017 and saw the most action he has ever had last season. He played in a total of 62 games and had five wins and five losses.
Bummer’s ERA was 3.51 while his WHIP was 1.26. He had two saves and 21 holds. He is a great piece to the bullpen puzzle and should be able to give the Sox a reliable arm to hold games and keep opponents from getting ahead.
All of the relievers that the White Sox have are capable of big things. They will form a bullpen that should help get them into the playoffs and beyond.
As long as these guys stay healthy, the sky’s the limit for the Sox in closing out and finishing games. Look for the bullpen to be one of the strongest parts of the team this coming season.