Giolito Aiming For Improvement With Better Efficiency

Lucas Giolito is "feeling great" after being slowed by rib cage soreness.

Bruce Levine
February 21, 2020 - 10:59 am

GLENDALE, Ariz. (670 The Score) -- White Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito is "feeling great" after his start of spring training was slowed by the minor setback of soreness in his rib cage.

Giolito intends to take the mound Saturday in the form of a side session. He has been throwing off flat ground recently so far. He believes he suffered the injury when he was coughing and laid up from a bad case of the flu a couple weeks ago.

"I am 100 percent back from my strain," Giolito said. "Me being a player, tell the staff I am ready to go full out." 

Giolito had an All-Star season in 2019, posting a 3.41 ERA and 1.06 WHIP while striking out 11.6 batters per nine innings across 29 starts. He has expressed his desire to start for the White Sox on Opening Day, when they host the Royals at Guaranteed Rate Field on March 26, and manager Rick Renteria has hinted Giolito will indeed receive that honor.

As an encore to his breakout campaign, Giolito wants to be great consistently in 2020.

"Being better is my goal," Giolito said. "First of all, I want to make all of my starts. I missed four or five starts last year (due to hamstring issues). I want to throw more innings, and that should make me more efficient. I want to make adjustments in games quicker. I feel now my body and mind are in sync to make those adjustments."

The 25-year-old Giolito is also taking on more of a leadership role, helping out the White Sox's other young pitchers.

"He would tell me how bad he pitched in 2018 and relate positive things to me," 24-year-old right-hander Dylan Cease said of his friendship with Giolito amid his rough 2019. "When he would tell me that, I could count on what he was saying because he had been down and now was one of the best in the league."

Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine​.