On Tuesday, reports indicated the Chicago White Sox are nearing their first major move of the offseason. According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the team is closing in on signing RHP Kendall Graveman to a three-year, $24 million deal.
Graveman split the 2021 season between Seattle with the Mariners and Houston with the AL Champion Astros. Prior to his 2020 season, which was also with the Mariners, Graveman pitched all but one season of his career with the Oakland Athletics.
Following the 2018 season, the 30-year-old signed a contract with the neighboring Chicago Cubs while dealing with an injury. After not pitching during the 2019 season, Graveman was granted free agency on November 4, 2019.
Graveman has served as a relief pitcher since moving on from Oakland. Although he can spot start, the Mississippi State product is best served out of the bullpen. It appears the White Sox are strengthening their group in front of Liam Hendriks, especially with Michael Kopech in line to start in 2022.
It’s uncertain whether the White Sox will continue to make impactful moves this winter. However, it is a step in the right direction by building up the bullpen. After pitching to a 1.77 ERA, 10 saves, and 56.0 innings in 53 games, Graveman appears to be a quality addition for $8 million per season. He doesn’t rely on strikeouts, but his numbers show great effectiveness as a reliever out of the pen. Now, the White Sox will have reinforcements to get games from their starter to Hendriks in the ninth.
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