Chicago White Sox pitcher Dylan Cease enters his second year in the big leagues looking to make a big jump from a disappointing rookie season.
Dylan Cease was like a lot of talented pitchers when they first get to the big leagues- not very good. Cease was brutally honest this week when assessing his 2019 season.
“I felt like last year I pretty much performed as poorly as I could,” Cease said. “Most disappointing was not having good command. I pitched a little bit in September, it got better. For most of the year it was just one of those years it was like a grind and a fight where I felt like I was trying to find it everyday and searching for it.”
2020 looks like it could be the year both Cease and the White Sox find it. Cease looks to improve significantly on his 5.79 ERA in 14 starts last year, while the White Sox eye the playoffs and finishing over .500 for the first time since 2012. Cease has been filthy in summer camp scrimmages, his ball darting all over the strike zone.
“Right now I feel like I don’t even have to think about it I’m just throwing and trying to be as nasty as I can be,” Cease said. “This year has got to be a step up.”
As for his team’s chances, Cease believes this could be a special season.
“I feel really optimistic,” Cease said. “This lineup has more depth than any team I have ever been on. The pitching staff has a ton of potential, it’s just, do we play up to our potential or not? We’ve got playoff talent that’s for sure. Right now, I feel really optimistic.”
It won’t be easy. Minnesota won the division last year with 101 wins, 28.5 games better than the White Sox. The Twins then added Josh Donaldson. The White Sox have had their own remake as well with Luis Robert, Edwin Encarnacion, Yasmani Grandal, Nomar Mazara all entering the everyday line-up along with veteran Dallas Keuchel joining the rotation.
“There are a lot of factors, it’s a 60-game sprint, there are things we can’t control but if we play to our ability we have to be close at the very least,” Cease said.
Time will tell, quickly. The sprint begins this Friday night through September 27.
To listen to the entire Dylan Cease interview check out Da Windy City podcast.