Lucas Giolito is pitching like one of the best pitchers in the game, and he was honored for it Monday.
Giolito was named the American League Pitcher of the Month, following up Tim Anderson, who was the AL Player of the Month for April, to give the White Sox two monthly award winners in the first two months of the 2019 season. Giolito is the first White Sox hurler to be named a Pitcher of the Month since Chris Sale in 2015.
Giolito has made a remarkable turnaround from his first full season in the big leagues last year, when he had the highest ERA and WHIP among baseball’s qualified starting pitchers. He also led the AL with 90 walks.
But things have been completely the opposite so far in 2019. During his award-winning month of May, Giolito went 5-0 with a 1.74 ERA and 46 strikeouts compared to 10 walks in six starts. Two of those starts were complete-game efforts, the first just five innings in a rain-shortened game against the Toronto Blue Jays but the second an impressive nine-inning performance against the championship-contending Houston Astros.
“Very satisfied,” Giolito said Sunday. “A bit of a relief after last year. I know a lot of people were doubting me. At times I doubted myself. I went into the offseason with a new plan and the plan is working so I’m going to stick with it.”Giolito has been one of the main reasons for the White Sox noticeable improvement from a year ago, when they finished with 100 losses. On the day Giolito was named Pitcher of the Month, the White Sox were just a game under .500 and coming off a 6-1 homestand. Giolito won twice on that homestand.
After being cast out of many projected rotations of the future by fans and observes thanks to his woeful numbers in 2018, Giolito has flipped the script with ace-like performances of late. And that, along with the continued strong play of Anderson, Yoan Moncada, Jose Abreu and others, is a terrific sign for the future-focused White Sox.Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the White Sox easily on your device.