One of the bigger questions for the Chicago White Sox heading into spring training was answered rather quickly.
The question was whether or not LHP Chris Sale would start the season in the White Sox rotation or come out of the bullpen. Well, that question was answered rather quickly when Chuck Garfien reported via Twitter that GM Ken Williams said Sale will start the season in the White Sox bullpen.
The role that Sale will serve in the bullpen is not yet figured out. Manager Ozzie Guillen said last week (also reported by Garfien) that he prefers Matt Thornton to close, but hasn’t ultimately made that decision yet. Either way, the White Sox should have one of the more dominant backends of the bullpen in 2011.
Sale had a 1.93 ERA and 32/10 K/BB ratio over 23.1 innings out of the bullpen for the Sox in 2010.
This move also tells me that the White Sox brass is pretty confident that Jake Peavy will be ready to roll by Opening Day. If Peavy wasn’t ready to go, Sale was the guy most likely to take his spot in the rotation.
From a fantasy perspective, keep an eye on this Sale/Thornton situation throughout spring training. Whomever wins the closer job has a chance to be a top-10 closer in 2011.
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