The White Sox have acquired Lance Lynn from the Rangers, for pitching prospects Dane Dunning and Avery Weems. Lynn has spent the last two seasons in Texas after signing a three-year deal. Lynn has had somewhat of a resurgence since coming over to the American League in 2018. Lynn signed with the Twins in 2018, after spending the first seven years of his career with the Cardinals, before being traded to the Yankees at the trade deadline.
Lynn is coming off a good shortened 2020 season. Lynn was arguably a top-10 pitcher in the league. His 1.5 fWAR, 3.32 ERA, and 9.54 K/9 each ranked in the top 10 in the league. Hitters had a BABIP of .242, second only to Kenta Maeda, with the Twins, and tied with Gerrit Cole of the Yankees. Rounding out the top-five are his new teammates, Lucas Giolito and Dallas Keuchel. This may be a fluke, but he was able to match the actual batting average to the expected batting average on four of his five pitches, while keeping it under .230. It helped that he was able to get batters to swing at the first pitch 61% of the time and also chase 27.2% of the time.
Lynn capped off his 2020 season with a sixth-place finish in Cy Young voting. That was his second year in a row finishing in the top 10 after he finished fifth in 2019. He joins the rotation headlined by Giolito and Keuchel, who both also finished top 10 in Cy Young voting this past season.
The White Sox are getting Lynn on this final year of his contract. There were many uncertainties going into the 2021 season with the rotation but adding Lynn to the mix cements the rotation’s top three spots. If the White Sox acquire one more starting pitcher, whether, through Free Agency or trade, you could be looking at a deep run in the playoffs this year.
Going to the Rangers is Dane Dunning and Avery Weems. Dunning is currently listed as the number 98 prospect in baseball, and the fifth-ranked prospect in the White Sox farm system, according to MLB Top 100 Prospects list. Dunning only spent three years in the Minors before being promoted to the Majors. Through 266.0 IP, making stops from Rookie Ball through AA, he pitched to a 2.74 ERA. He managed to strike out 300 batters in that time frame, while only walking 71 batters.
He skipped AAA and made his Major League debut this past August. He was able to make seven starts this year. He had three really good starts against the Royals, Pirates, and Twins. His pitches individually were nothing special but combined he was able to mix them up well. He was able to keep the hard-hit rate down, which in turn helped keep the expected batting average and slugging percentage of his opponents down. He is going to make an interesting addition to the Rangers this upcoming year.
Avery Weems was drafted by the White Sox in the sixth round of the 2019 draft. He was able to pitch in 10 games between the Arizona League and Pioneer League. Through 60.1 IP he owned a 2.09 ERA and he struck out 74 batters while only walking 10. While not on MLB’s list of top 30 prospects, though Baseball Prospectus had him listed as number 10. There is not much information on him just yet.
All stats per FanGraphs unless otherwise noted
Featured image taken from Twitter