The Chicago White Sox have made some big deals this winter, and they’ve filled one of the gaps in their roster with a veteran hurler as they’ve signed Derek Holland to a one-year contract.
Holland, who spent the first eight seasons of his career with the Texas Rangers, will make $6 million next season and is expected to slot into the starting rotation after the team traded away Chris Sale in a blockbuster swap at the MLB Winter Meetings.
That isn’t to say that Holland will be able to replace Sale’s production. He did have a monstrous 2011 season with the Rangers, going 16-5 with a 3.95 ERA, but since then his career has been hampered with a series of shoulder issues. In 2016 he dealt with more arm issues as he went 7-9 with a 4.95 ERA in 20 starts with the Rangers.
Holland’s arrival not only means that one more roster spot will be filled in the post-Sale rotation, but it also means that the White Sox can be patient with some of the young arms that they’ve acquired.
Players like Carson Fulmer and Lucas Giolito are both projected to be starters at some point with the White Sox, but adding Holland means that those highly-touted players will have the pressure eased on them considerably.