Although not as flashy as an official league-issued award, one White Sox pitcher has earned some end-of-the-year recognition.
Last week, Lance Lynn won the 2022 Pitching Ninja Award for “K Strut of the Year.” The strikeout celebration that notched the honor came against the Minnesota Twins on July 6, where the “Big Bastard” fanned catcher Ryan Jeffers and immediately grabbed his crotch as he walked off the mound.
Like most players on this past year’s White Sox team, Lynn had a season that fell in the disappointing category. The 35-year-old started off by missing the first two months after he injured his right knee in Spring Training and required surgery for a slight tendon tear. Once he returned, Lynn went on to capture an 8-7 record with a 3.99 ERA (54 ER/121.2 IP), 124 strikeouts, 6.53 K/9, and 1.134 WHIP in 21 starts.
In 2021, his first with the White Sox, Lynn was much more impressive as he made his second career All-Star appearance and finished third in Cy Young Award voting. The veteran had an 11-6 record, 2.69 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, and 176 strikeouts in 28 starts. He also signed a two-year, $38M extension during the season, with a club option for 2024.
This virtual honor marks the second-consecutive season that Lynn has won Pitching Ninja’s award. During 2021, the White Sox starter struck out Astros catcher Martin Maldonado to punch out the side and, again, grabbed the area below his equator.
Lynn is set to earn $18.5 million in 2023. We’ll see if he can repeat his performance for a third-straight year while putting up some better results.
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