Rick Hahn took his first step toward turning the flaming bag of crap that was the 2014 White Sox bullpen into something ... well, less crappy, as the team reportedly agreed to terms with left-hander Zach Duke on Tuesday.
Duke, 31, is a 10-year veteran who has spent his whole career in the National League. After failing as a starter (he hasn't started regularly since 2010), he reinvented himself as a reliever and in 2014 with the Brewers, had a career resurgence, posting a 2.45 ERA with 74 strikeouts and 17 walks in 58.2 innings.
Plus, there's this, per Dan Hayes:
Of Duke’s 74 appearances, 25 were in high leverage spots and 12 more were in medium leverage situations, according to BaseballReference.com. He stranded 80 percent of the runners he inherited (33-of-41), which is an area the White Sox struggled in 2014, allowing 32 percent to score. The league average of inherited runners scored was 28 percent.
Duke also excelled against left-handed hitters, though he was tough on righties, too. Left-handers hit .198/.267/.302 against Duke, who has also pitched for Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Washington and Arizona.
Right-handers hit .242/.288/.298 against Duke.
Fox Sports' JP Morosi reported that it's a three-year deal worth $15 million, which is more years than I expected Hahn to commit to a reliever, but the price is about the going rate for competence nowadays.