Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Grading Erick Fedde’s First Start In A White Sox Unifrom 

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Erick Fedde took the mound on Sunday with the task of preventing the White Sox from starting the season 0-3 for the first time since 2015. While Fedde was unable to stop the White Sox from getting swept by the Tigers, the former KBO MVP did post a respectable outing in his return to MLB.

The 31-year-old right-hander pitched 4.1 innings, striking out seven and allowing two runs on five hits and one walk. Both runs allowed by Fedde came via solo home runs in the White Sox’s eventual 3-2 loss.

It was a good first impression for Fedde, who threw just over 60 percent of his pitches for strikes (58 of 96). The former first-round pick is known as a ground ball pitcher but was only able to induce two ground balls. He attacked the Tigers’ lineup like a ground ball pitcher, throwing 36 sinkers, 33 sweepers, 12 splitters, and 12 cutters. However, he seemed to struggle with locating them at times, leading to a large pitch count in just four innings.

“I felt pretty good with my stuff today,” Fedde told reporters in front of his locker after the game. “The reality is, I think a lot of the time I was going from 1-2 counts to 3-2, which kind of got me out of the game early. It’s something I’m frustrated with, you know? I want to go deeper for the boys.”

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It was a labor-intensive outing for Fedde, who needed 96 pitches to record just 13 outs. He had to work around a two-out single in his first two innings. After recording a 1-2-3 inning in the third, he ran into more traffic in the fourth.

Fedde opened the fourth inning by hanging a sweeper over the plate, which Tigers right fielder Kerry Carpenter sent 393 feet to give Detroit its first run. He responded by striking out Riley Green. However, the strikeout was followed by a single to Mark Canha and a walk to Colt Keith, putting runners on first and second. Fedde escaped the jam by getting Gio Urshela to line out to right field and then threw five consecutive low sweepers to coax a strikeout out of Javier Baez. Fedde threw six or more pitches against four of the six hitters he faced that inning.

The fifth inning began the same way as the fourth, with a solo home run, this time via Jake Rogers after Fedde left an 83 mph pitch over the heart of the plate. Once again, he responded with a strikeout, this time back-to-back strikeouts. Parker Meadows became the first strikeout victim of the inning after he chased an 86 mph splitter just below the zone. Fedde capped off his outing by getting Spencer Torkelson to whiff on another 86 mph spittler. Torkelson would be the last batter Pedro Grifol allowed Fedde to face as left-hander Tanner Banks was brought in to get the final out of the inning.

The strikeout capped off a promising debut from Fedde, who helped keep the White Sox in the game. Ultimately he would like to have two pitches that resulted in home runs back, but he did a good job of minimizing damage when he allowed runners on base.

The Grade: B-

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