Saturday, June 4, 2016
The First Big Trade of the Season (And Why it Matters)
It was a year in the making, but James Shields has finally wound up getting dealt before the trade deadline. And the guys who got him...are the exact right guys who need him right now.
The White Sox are one of the best up-and-coming teams this year. They've developed a hard-hitting lineup, based mostly off of imported players, but featuring a few homegrown stars. The pitching staff is one of the most impressive improvements- yes, they don't have Jeff Samardzija anymore, but, until recently, they had enough. Chris Sale and Jose Quintana are both absolutely unstoppable, Carlos Rodon is slowly finding his way, and Mat Latos has been winning quite a few games. In terms of depth...not much going on. Miguel Gonzalez has been the 5 man, and he hasn't been especially impressive. Rodon gives up a few too many runs, and Latos isn't the greatest strikeout pitcher anymore.
So, booking James Shields as an addition to the rotation works pretty well. The White Sox do not NEED a 1 or 2 starter at this point, and James Shields is at the point where he doesn't have to be the top starter anymore. Putting him into the 3 or 4 spot can definitely bolster the rotation, as Shields is still a strikeout artist, even if he loses his way in the ER category.
This move gives the White Sox rotation depth, and makes it so they don't have to rely so much on someone like Carlos Rodon who isn't all the way there yet.
Fantastic stuff by Kenny Williams. Lets see if it works out.