Ranking AL Central Division Starting Rotations
By Steve Mitzel
2. Chicago White Sox: Grade A-
1. Chris Sale LHP
2. Jeff Samardzija RHP
3. Jose Quintana LHP
4. Hector Noesi RHP
5. John Danks LHP
Chris Sale is, in my opinion, the most dominant and underrated pitcher in all of baseball. The White Sox have not made the mistake of trading Sale away and instead building their rotation around him. Sale’s foot injury, though, is the biggest asterisk in this rotation. He needs to return to form quickly for the White Sox to contend and this rotation to be the best in the Central Division. I initially had them ranked as the best, but the injury is a big setback missing key prep time in spring training.
Motor City Bengals
The White Sox probably have the deepest 1-3 rotation in the division (and the maybe even in the AL) with a healthy Sale. Samardzija is a great addition to this lineup and has already made a nice start to a successful transition to the junior circuit with the Oakland A’s last year. Jose Quintana is a beast in this rotation and picks up a lot of innings, strikeouts and provides a left-handed presence. Noesi and Danks need to be more consistent and provide some solid innings to eat for the rotation.
Look for the White Sox to fill Sale’s void with Erik Johnson, Brad Penny and early on the youngster Carlos Rondon to make a splash.