General Manager Rick Hahn and the Chicago White Sox have stayed busy as the hot stove shows no signs of cooling down. Thursday afternoon, the team dealt pitcher Andre Rienzo to the Miami Marlins for 27 year-old lefty reliever Dan Jennings.
The Iowa native was a 9th round pick of the Marlins back in 2008, and has seen time in the big leagues over each of the past three seasons. He’s racked up 100 total innings of work over that time, and has a nice lifetime ERA of 2.43.
Though he only pitched 40.1 innings last year, you can’t help but be impressed by the 1.34 ERA he posted. His 1.537 WHIP did leave much to be desired, but one way or another, he was able to get the job done. Unfortunately, he does hold a lifetime 1.460 WHIP. So, how is he able to keep all the runners he lets on from crossing the plate?
Simply put, he’s been at his best when it matters most.
With runners on, the opposition only hit .238/.332/.328 against Jennings, and an even more impressive line of .213/.348/.306 with runners in scoring position. Also, make sure to take a look at his “Clutch Stats” – long story short, he’s not only good with runners on, but also in any big situations (late in games, in close games).
The last thing worth pointing out about the former Nebraska Cornhusker is that he limits the long ball well, only surrendering 6 HR over his 100 IP.
Considering that a now 26-year-old Rienzo wasn’t going to pan out to be much more than a long reliever for the White Sox, this deal seems like one certainly worth making.
You can count on David Robertson, Zach Duke, Jake Petricka, Daniel Webb and Zach Putnam all breaking camp with the team in the bullpen, which leaves (likely) two spots up for grabs. Javy Guerra has a good shot at getting one of those spots, and though having Duke as the only southpaw is doable, it’s not ideal.
Jennings will have a good chance at breaking camp with the big league club, and could make their bullpen a deeper unit. At the very least, he provides depth in the form of a somewhat-proven MLB arm.
We’ll leave the rest to pitching coach Don Cooper, who hopefully can help Jennings cut down on his walks and add some deceit to his delivery/pitches to help trip up lefty hitters a bit. If he can, Hahn may have pulled of a very sneaky deal that could present some legit value for the Sox.
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