The 2022 Trade Deadline has been as big a bummer as True Detective Season 2. The White Sox finally broke their proverbial cherry and got into the mix with about 24 hours left to go in the SZN with the move below.
Getting “something” for Reese McGuire, a player that the White Sox were likely going to have to DFA in the coming days anyways seems like a “WIN”, but I am really not sure. This past Tuesday night on the SoxMachine / 108 Playback LIVE STREAMgame watch, which you should be signed up for and joining us whenever we jump on, I noted the White Sox success against left handed hitters.
OVERALL vs LHH 9th in FIP 3.81
RP vs LHH 15th in FIP 3.82
In the 7th, 8th and 9th Innings vs LHH 5th in FIP 3.38
The bottom line, the White Sox don’t really seem to be in need of a Lefty out of the bullpen. However, enter Jake Diekman.
Here’s Jake Diekman…
Diekman is a noted “stuff” guy, and he’s a name you know, like Jeff Johnson. That also scares me a bit on the face of it. Seems like how the AJ Pollock deal felt where we thought we were really making out in the deal, but really we got similar value back for Craig Kimbrel. Anywho, below is Diekman’s results.
That seems, okay, for a perfectly averagish 102 ERA+ on the season (current White Sox journeyman lefty reliever who can barely button a shirt Tanner Banks sports a 139 ERA+ on the season). A deeper look though brings up some potential issues with ole Jake.
Jake seems to be destroying Lefty bats (which we have established isn’t that big of an issue for the White Sox), but Righties are clobbering him. The .395 OBP he’s allowing to Righties would be 7th best out of qualified hitters. Yea, it’s been bad. He’s basically a LOOGY at this point. Only one problem, the rules don’t really benefit this class of pitcher much anymore. Could he turn it around, maybe? Is this a buy low situation, possibly. One more thing…that could be a feature or a bug….
Jake is under contract in 2023, with a $1M buyout or a Club Option for 2024, so if you do strike gold here, you have some upside. If you don’t, well you have added more bullpen salary for 2023. To me, watching Chaim Bloom operate today, (the Red Sox GM flipped C Christian Vazquez for prospects, grabbed Tommy Pham and then did this little deal) this seems like a salary dump for the Red Sox. You can take the Chaim Bloom out of Tampa, but you can’t take the Tampa out of Chaim Bloom.
I don’t have any real problems with this move, I think it’s fine to get a live body for a guy you probably needed to dispose of anyway, but this just doesn’t move the needle for me in either direction. I hope Diekman is good, but his 17.5% walk rate says there is still significant downside risk here. FUCKING SUPER BULLPEN!