When asked which team in baseball is best set up for the future, perhaps no team is better set up for the next ten years than The Chicago White Sox, yes, the White Sox.
Loaded with arguably the game’s most elite farmsystem in a major market and young major league studs such as Lucas Giolito, Tim Anderson, Eloy Jiminez and Yoan Moncada, the White Sox are finally looking to spend money just a year after they barely lost out to the Padres in the Manny Machado sweepstakes. So far this offseason they’ve traded for Nomar Mazara, brought back Jose Abreu, signed SP Gio Gonzalez as well as the top catcher on the market (Yasmani Grandal) and now have struck a deal with former American League Cy Young award winner Dallas Keuchel, per Jeff Passan of ESPN.
Passan reports that the 2017 World Series champion ace is in a 3-year $55.5M deal with the Sox. Jon Heyman adds on, saying that there is a fourth vesting year that’s worth $8.5M. What it is exactly that gets the option into fruition remains to be reported, but that would keep Keuchel in the Southside until age-36.
This offseason ended a lot quicker for Keuchel in 2019 than it did in 2018 when he had the qualifying offer attached to him. He waited until mid season to sign with eventual NL East Champs Atlanta Braves. In 19 games, without a Spring Training, the lefty went 8-8 with a 3.75 ERA but played a pivotal role in helping develop the electric Max Fried.
For Chicago, it’s a steal if he returns to 2015 form (20-8, 2.48 ERA with 216 Ks), but Keuchel in general brings a lot to the table for a team looking to contend in the weakest division in baseball. He has a 3.67 lifetime ERA, to go with an 84-71 record, multiple All Star appearances and 1036 strikeouts in 8 big league seasons.
He’ll slide into number 2 on their rotation, behind Giolito giving them a very formiddle 1-2 punch. Giolito, for comparison’s sake, was 14-9 with a 3.41 ERA and 228 Ks in 29 games in 2019.
PSE will keep you updated as more information is available.
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