Sep 13, 2020; Arlington, Texas, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Lance Lynn (35) throws during the first inning against the Oakland Athletics at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago White Sox have been determined to add a good starting pitcher for a long while, and they reportedly did so late on Monday night by acquiring Lance Lynn from the Texas Rangers. Several MLB insiders are reporting that Lynn has been traded for pitcher Dane Dunning and a pitching prospect, who The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports is left-hander Avery Weems.

Lynn — who will turn 34 in May — is owed $8 million in 2021 on the final season of his three-year contract, so this move shows that the White Sox are all-in for the 2021 season.

The right-hander led all MLB pitchers with 84 innings pitched in 2020, and put together a 3.32 ERA and 4.19 FIP. In 2019, he he had a 3.67 ERA and 3.13 FIP over 208 1/3 innings pitched, and was worth 7.5 wins above replacement (WAR) per Baseball Reference and 6.8 WAR per FanGraphs. Over the last two seasons, only Jacob deGrom has been worth more WAR for pitchers per Baseball Reference (and only deGrom, Shane Bieber, and Max Scherzer have been worth more WAR per FanGraphs).

So, over the last two seasons, Lynn has truly pitched like an ace. And now he joins 26-year-old ace Lucas Giolito — who tossed a no-hitter in August — and veteran southpaw Dallas Keuchel — who had a 1.99 ERA over 63 1/3 innings in 2020 — to lead the Chicago starting rotation.

Add that to the extremely talented group of position players the White Sox have (Chicago led all teams in position-player WAR in 2020, according to FanGraphs), and they should be a very dangerous team.

The trade makes plenty of sense for the Rangers. They had the AL’s worst record in 2020 at 22-38, and there’s no reason to think they can contend in 2021. Lynn’s trade value won’t get any higher, both due to how stunningly well he’s pitched over the last two seasons, and because he’s on the final year of his deal.

In Dunning, Texas gets a young pitcher (he turns 26 on Dec. 20) who showed in his rookie 2020 season that he can a productive major-league starter. The 6’4″, 200-pound right-hander has a four-pitch mix, which he used to put together a rock-solid 3.97 ERA and 3.99 FIP over seven starts in 2020. To get several years of control of an MLB-ready starting pitcher that was very productive in his rookie season, in exchange for one year of Lynn, is a really nice return for the Rangers.

So, the Rangers did well in this trade, but the main takeaway from the deal is of course the White Sox adding another ace-esque arm to their rotation. The White Sox made “the jump” in 2020 with a 35-25 record, after winning 72 games in 2019. Don’t be surprised if they make another leap into very legitimate title contention in 2021.

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at