Chicago White Sox: Should Hector Santiago Replace Gavin Floyd in the Rotation?

Matthew Smith@@MatthewSmithBRCorrespondent IIIApril 16, 2013

Chicago White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd (0-2) is not pitching very well. Hector Santiago, on the other hand, has been lights out for the White Sox.

The question thus becomes: Should the White Sox replace Floyd with Santiago in the rotation?

Yes, they should, and for a few reasons.

First, Floyd has not been good. Following his last start against the Toronto Blue Jays (4.1 IP, 4 ER, 3 BB, 6 K), Floyd’s ERA stands at 6.41. It has been worse than it looks.

His stat line against the Jays, for example, could have been worse if not for Santiago. He induced an inning-ending double play when he replaced Floyd with one out in the bottom of the fifth.

While Floyd consistently gets ahead of hitters, he cannot seem to put them away, and it has been costing him.

Conversely, Santiago has been almost unhittable. Including his outing Monday, he has given up one hit in 8.0 innings of work, while striking out six and walking three.

Santiago has also found success in the past as a starter. In 2012, he went 2-0 with a 1.86 ERA in four starts. He has command of four pitches which he can throw at any time.

There are options to replace Santiago in the bullpen. Scott Snodgress, for example, is 2-0 with a 3.27 ERA for the Double-A Birmingham Barons. He would fit nicely as the third left-hander in the 'pen.

Floyd, in turn, would be relegated to the bullpen as the long man. The whole situation could end up being a positive for the White Sox.

Finally, consider that there is precedence for a move like this.

Remember that just last season Philip Humber was given 11 starts too many, before finally being replaced by Jose Quintana. Humber easily cost the White Sox eight victories after throwing a perfect game against the Seattle Mariners.

The White Sox (5-8) cannot afford to make the same mistake this season.

There is sticking with a pitcher through rough stretches, and then there is Floyd. He can be electric at times, and he can also struggle to get outs—sometimes in the same game. I had been on board with Floyd’s extension, but that time has passed.

To be sure, Floyd has only had three starts, but the young season is already getting away from the White Sox.

Now is not the time to procrastinate.

 

*Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com and ESPN.com.

 

Follow @MatthewSmithBR.

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