Lopez and the White Sox agreed to a one-year, $2.1 million deal Friday, avoiding arbitration, Robert Murray of FanSided.com reports. The 27-year-old righty's breakout failed to arrive in 2020. Instead, he took another step backwards, posting a 6.49 ERA and 1.63 WHIP in eight starts. He struck out a modest 19.8 percent of opposing batters while walking a career-worst 12.4 percent. He'll have to step things up if he's to remain a part of the rotation for the increasingly competitive White Sox.
Lopez has not been included on the White Sox's AL Wild Card Round roster. Lopez had a rather disappointing 2020 campaign, struggling to a 6.49 ERA and a 1.63 WHIP over eight starts. The White Sox evidently don't want to use him even as a low-leverage reliever in the postseason, let alone as a starter.
Lopez (1-3) allowed six runs on four hits and three walks while striking out three over 1.1 innings in a loss to the Cubs on Sunday. The Cubs batted around in the second inning; Kris Bryant and David Bote both homered off Lopez and Billy Hamilton stole home to add insult to (statistical) injury. Lopez attempted to get right at the alternate camp for a couple weeks earlier this month and things were looking better initially upon his return, but this outing washes away most of those gains. He is iffy for the postseason roster, and Lopez may very well be non-tendered in the winter.
Lopez didn't factor into the decision in Tuesday's 5-3 extra-inning loss to Cleveland, allowing one run on three hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out three. A solo shot by Cesar Hernandez was the only blemish on his performance, and the White Sox took Lopez off the hook for a potential loss with a run in the top of the sixth inning. The right-hander has been solid since his return to the rotation, posting a 2.35 ERA, 0.91 WHIP and 11:4 K:BB over three starts and 15.1 innings, and he'll make one more trip to the mound during the regular season in Sunday's finale against the Cubs.
Lopez allowed three runs on four hits and a walk while striking out six over 5.1 innings Thursday against the Twins. He didn't factor into the decision. Lopez gave up all three of his runs on solo homers, exiting with one out in the sixth after Josh Donaldson left the yard. Lopez got off the hook for the loss, however, as the White Sox rallied to win 4-3 and clinch a playoff spot. Lopez has allowed three or fewer runs in five of six outings this season, though he's struggled to work deep into ballgames.