How Lucas Giolito Has Emerged as an Ace for White Sox

June 20, 2019 - 12:31 pm

Even though Lucas Giolito allowed six earned runs against the Cubs on Wednesday, his 2.22 ERA shifted to just 2.74. That’s how dominant the White Sox starter has been this season, and it’s stemmed from his past nine outings.

The 24-year-old righty has tallied a 1.76 ERA during that span, good for the fourth-best in baseball. He’s also accumulated a 4.35 strikeout-to-walk ratio (K/BB) over that stretch after posting a league-low 1.39 K/BB ratio last season among qualified starters.

“Big Time Baseball: Players Edition” co-hosts Ben Davis and Tony Gwynn Jr. broke down Giolito’s mechanical adjustments on the latest podcast.

“He (Giolito) moved to the extreme left side of the rubber,” Davis said. “He feels that gives him a better angle, particularly against some of these lefties, and he completely abandoned his two-seamer. He’s living at the top of the zone with his four-seamer. He has good ride to his fastball.

“[Hall of Famer> Frank Thomas told Lucas Giolito, he said, ‘Listen, you have to get guys off the outside part of the plate. The only way you can do that is to start challenging guys inside and moving some feet.’”

According to Fangraphs, he’s throwing his four-seam fastball 55 percent of the time -- his highest rate in a White Sox uniform (2017-19). Discover more about Giolito’s improvement in the video above.

Davis and Gwynn also discussed the Braves moving into first-place in the NL East (3:30), Padres closer Kirby Yates and the relief pitching market as the trade deadline nears (7:50), the Brewers’ lackluster bullpen amid their race with the Cubs (13:30) and the Yankees’ incredible lineup (25:08). Later on, they chat with Mariners second baseman Dee Gordon to discuss his mindset towards Seattle’s trading spree (30:37).