The legend of Scott Carroll continues to grow for the Chicago White Sox. After winning his major league debut at the age of 29 against David Price and the Tampa Bay Rays, Carroll proved his talent wasn’t just a fluke against the Cleveland Indians. In his second big league start, Carroll had another strong outing, giving up five hits and two unearned runs in six innings against an Indians’ offense that tagged White Sox pitching for 12 runs last night. Based on his performances, Carroll deserves to stay in the Chicago rotation.
Carroll’s ERA over two starts is 0.68 and his WHIP sits around 1.05. It’s potentially a concern that he walks more batters than he strikes out. At the same time, in his two starts Carroll has shown a mastery at inducing ground ball outs, leading to more force outs and double plays making the walks work in his favor.
The same day that Carroll took the mound in Cleveland, Felipe Paulino suited up for the Triple A Charlotte Knights against the Buffalo Bisons in his first rehab start since being placed on the DL on Apr. 19 with right rotator cuff inflammation. In two innings of work, Paulino gave up five hits and two runs (one earned) with one walk and one strikeout. Before his injury, Paulino’s performance on the major league mound was subpar at best, with an 0-2 record, 11.29 ERA and 2.56 WHIP in four starts.
Those aren’t the kind of numbers, rehab or regular season, that a team needs from its starting pitchers, especially a team like the White Sox whose ace is on the DL with no clear timetable for his return. The White Sox also currently rank third-to-last in baseball and second-to-last in the American League in rotation ERA due to inflated numbers like those of Paulino. If for some reason the White Sox feel the need to give Paulino another chance to start after his rehab is complete, it should be a one-and-done situation. Paulino can have his shot, but if he muffs it, that spot belongs to Carroll, plain and simple, based on merit.