Lechich started the 2016 season hitting 22 hits over 138 ABs (16 of them singles) with 42 punchouts and only eight walks. He finished the season giving up 12 hits over 15 innings pitched while striking out 16 and only walking just three.
Lechich has an athletic, lanky frame and has some very real arm strength off the mound. He has some crossfire action in the delivery and that, coupled with his compact arm action and ¾ slot that generates a fair amount of deception. While there is some effort in the delivery and arm action, Lechich does a good job repeating, and he looks very comfortable for a guy that just started pitching in June. In his new left-handed reliever role, Lechich has renewed value and showed the ingredients of potentially becoming a valuable lefty bullpen piece. The fastball is fringe average right now (89-to-92 mph), but he can really turn it over and get some late life down in the zone. As he gets more innings under his belt, it is not a stretch to see him build some arm strength and add a couple miles per hour. He stayed down in the zone in my look and the delivery is pretty clean, so it looks like he shouldn’t have too much trouble throwing strikes going forward. The circle change (80-to-82mph) is probably his best pitch—it gets late bottom and the arm action really sells it. At a future 55-grade offering, it could give him a real weapon vs. right-handed hitters. He has confidence with it and showed feel as well, using it to both sides of the plate. The slider is also fringe average presently, but he showed a couple with ¾ bite, and it should get to average.
This is still a very small sample size, and going forward Lechich will need to perform well this month and carry it over into good spring camp in 2017. I would not be surprised to see him get a non-roster invite to big league camp in March, but ultimately expect the White Sox to assign him to High A again for some reps, and then quickly get him up to Double-A Birmingham. Here’s my full report on Lechich.