The Chicago White Sox don’t seem to know when they have something good. Not retaining starting pitcher Mike Clevinger’s services for another season is a move that the White Sox may regret making if they don’t get out there and get him signed back with the team. While some people might agree with this stance, there will be others out there who feel that re-signing Clevinger would be a bad idea and that the White Sox should not do it.
To find the real value in re-signing Clevinger, you must look at the facts and numbers behind his season in 2023. It’s easy to say that Clevinger was the best of the bunch, out of the starting pitchers. Sure, that might be saying a lot since the team had Dylan Cease but if you compare the numbers, you will see that, at least statistically, he was the best. Clevinger possessed an ERA of 3.77 with nine wins following 24 total starts for the year
When it comes to strikeouts, Clevinger racked up 110 of them in the 131.1 innings that he pitched. His Wins Above Replacement (WAR) was 3.3.
A reunion with Clevinger should be something the White Sox push for
Clevinger is someone that the White Sox need to bring back because he knows the Sox and the Sox know him. He was reliable, even though he suffered an injury last year, and can be counted on to be a key in their rotation.
It just makes sense.
The White Sox have been purging themselves of several of their players this offseason. We have seen the likes of Tim Anderson, Liam Hendriks and others hit the road. The Sox are going through a rebuilding phase, again, shortly after they underwent another one. Keeping some continuity on the team is going to help them grow into what they will become in the future.
Let’s face it, the White Sox need all the pitching help that they can get and we hope that they will be able to find it this offseason. However, they don’t have to go that far to find it. Clevinger is sitting right there waiting to re-sign with Chicago. Likely, Clevinger wouldn’t mind coming back to his old team. He had a good run with the Sox and seemed to get along well in Chicago.
Keep in mind that Clevinger did decline his option to stay with the White Sox in 2024 so it might take some coaxing to get him back to Chicago. If the White Sox don't put enough money on the table for him, they might miss out on his return.
Why not bite the bullet and re-sign an arm that you know is going to produce at a decent level for you? His track record proves it.
The White Sox would be under a little less stress this offseason if they were to bring Clevinger back. It doesn’t appear as if there is a ton of interest in Clevinger at this time by other teams, so Chicago might be able to get him on a cheaper deal and perhaps even lock him into a one or two-year deal.
The Chicago White Sox need consistency and bringing back a familiar face may help them do that. Clevinger is good, he’s not great, but he’s good and he can help this team out. I say they bring him back on a one-year deal and let him help anchor the rotation, along with Cease if he’s still with the White Sox.
Clevinger is still not signed yet, so why not go out and get him?