The Chicago White Sox are a team that has had some tough luck in 2022. Part of that luck was the way that they were forced to handle the innings of Michael Kopech. He was mostly good when he was out there but it was clearly an adjustment year for him.
His body and his production took a hit as he transitioned from being a reliever back into being a starter. He had a few games where he looked elite, a few where he struggled, and a few that the kids would say were mid. There were also some times when he was clearly experiencing pain.
All of these are things that come from pitching over a full season for the first time. Kopech mostly handled it well and now it is obvious that he is done for the year. He was put on the Injured List a few weekends ago and hasn’t come back since.
It doesn’t make sense to bring him back for a start when the White Sox are going to end this 2022 season with a whimper. He should focus on the offseason and do what he needs to do to be ready for the 2023 campaign.
Kopech’s role is going to be expanded in 2023. He isn’t going to come in as the sixth starter that becomes the fifth starter throughout the year. He should be considered the number three going into the year and it could get even better than that.
The Chicago White Sox are being very careful with Michael Kopech right now.
He is talented enough to have a Dylan Cease type of breakout any of these years. His fastball has incredible movement and he works it well with his breaking stuff when things are going well for him. If he can become more consistent, he will be elite.
Now, it is about having a good offseason for Kopech. If he goes out there and works on his stuff the way we have seen guys like Lucas Giolito and Dylan Cease do during a solid offseason, Kopech can become better than all of those guys.
Now, Kopech joins Tim Anderson and Luis Robert as great players who are done for the year because the season won’t end in the playoffs. All of them might be back if they were making it but as mentioned before, there is no point for them to risk it anymore. It is a tough end but there is hope that 2023 can be very good for all of them.