Michael Kopech
24-Year-Old PitcherSP
Out
Injury Opt Out
Est. Return 2/1/2021
2020 Fantasy Outlook
Since 2000, of six starting pitchers who had their first Tommy John surgery in September, as Kopech did in 2018, the average innings pitched in the season that began 18 months later was 101.2. Two of the six (Mike Hampton, Scott Mathieson) did not make it back at all during what should have been their comeback years. Kopech has an 80-grade fourseam fastball with elite spin and will flash a plus slider and plus changeup. However, his command and control are fringe-average at best. Considering command is often the last thing to return for pitchers coming off TJS, we should not panic if he is wild in spring training or even the first couple months of the season. He is undeniably a flyball pitcher, so home runs will sometimes follow his walks and hit batsmen. This is not the year to expect quality ratios, but there will be a lot of strikeouts if he is lucky enough to avoid setbacks when he starts to ramp up. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a contract with the Red Sox in June of 2014 that includes a $1.5 million signing bonus.
Opts out of 2020 season
PChicago White Sox
Opt Out
July 10, 2020
Kopech (personal) opted out of playing during the 2020 season Friday.
ANALYSIS
Kopech underwent Tommy John surgery in September of 2018 and had fully recovered, but he'll elect not to play in 2020 in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. General manager Rick Hahn emphasized the team's support of the right-hander's decision. "We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season," Hahn said.
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Pitching Stats
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2019
2018
2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-36%
BAA vs LHP
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
-36%
BAA vs LHP
2017
No Stats
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .258 34 9 1 8 2 0 1
Since 2017vs Right .400 34 6 1 12 3 0 3
2019vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018vs Left .258 34 9 1 8 2 0 1
2018vs Right .400 34 6 1 12 3 0 3
2017vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2017vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-80%
ERA on Road
2019
No Stats
2018
 
 
-80%
ERA on Road
2017
No Stats
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 7.56 1.80 8.1 0 1 0 11.9 2.2 4.3
Since 2017Away 1.50 1.17 6.0 1 0 0 6.0 0.0 0.0
2019Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2018Home 7.56 1.80 8.1 0 1 0 11.9 2.2 4.3
2018Away 1.50 1.17 6.0 1 0 0 6.0 0.0 0.0
2017Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2017Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Prospect Rankings History
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Michael Kopech
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41 days ago
James Anderson provides top-300 dynasty rankings specifically geared toward rebuilding teams.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
Chicago's tantalizing fireballer grinded his way to a late-season MLB debut, battling control issues at Triple-A for much of the season. The excitement was short lived, as he required Tommy John surgery in mid-September. Kopech gave up a run on 11 hits and one walk while hitting five batters and striking out nine over 11 innings in his first three MLB starts (two were cut short by rain). He was pummeled in his final start, which also included a rain delay before he tore his UCL. There is a lot of noise in his tiny MLB sample -- elbow issues resulted in his velocity ticking down in each successive start and only one was unaffected by rain -- but in his debut outing his 96.8 mph four-seamer averaged 2,629 rpm -- Justin Verlander led qualified starters at 2,618 rpm. He also flashed a plus slider and plus changeup. Kopech will miss all of 2019 and with a normal recovery he will be fully healthy for spring training in 2020 -- 17-plus months removed from the surgery.
Last year Kopech's doubters thought he would end up as a high-leverage reliever, but now he seems more likely to wind up on the cover of GQ than in a big-league bullpen. There are reasonable arguments for a couple other hurlers (Forrest Whitley and Alex Reyes), but Kopech will be ranked by most as the top pitching prospect in the game this offseason. In addition to his famed 80-grade fastball, which he can dial up to triple digits with ease, Kopech made massive strides with his slider and changeup. Both secondaries now project as plus offerings, and with improving command, a future No. 1 starter is coming into focus. The White Sox kept him at Double-A for most of 2017, but rewarded his improvement with a three-start run at Triple-A to close out the year. He will return to Charlotte, but he should spend the bulk of 2018 in the big-league rotation. His immediate floor is a high-strikeout ratio risk, but if he throws enough strikes, he could be an SP2 on a per-start basis.
Kopech made headlines in 2016, both bad and good. The bad was breaking his hand in spring training while getting into an altercation with a teammate, delaying his start to the season until July. Between this incident and missing 50 games of development in 2015 due to testing positive for a banned substance, there were some makeup questions dogging him. Once the 6-foot-3 right-hander started pitching, the good headlines started. His calling card is an overpowering fastball that touches triple digits. He breezed through Carolina League hitters, striking out 82 in 52 innings (14.2 K/9) and was clearly one of the top prospects in the Arizona Fall League. It is easy to see why the White Sox insisted Kopech be part of the deal for Chris Sale. Commanding the heater (5.0 BB/9 in 2016) in addition to improving the secondary offerings and building up innings (134.2 in three seasons) make up his to-do list for 2017.
Kopech is one of Boston’s better pitching prospects at the lower levels of the organization, projecting as a No. 2 starter if it all clicks for him. He was given a challenging assignment to Low-A Greenville to start the season and was successful at that level, finishing 4-5 with a 2.63 ERA while striking out 70 in 65 innings. The bad news is that Kopech was suspended 50 games for testing positive for Oxilofrine, a stimulant in violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. The suspension wiped out the rest of his regular season, leaving him only an option of working out at team’s training facility in Fort Myers. He was able to work on a few things there, in particular his off-speed stuff and ironing out his mechanics. Kopech participated in the Fall Instructional League, making up for some lost development time. His major areas of focus in 2016 are repeating his delivery, commanding his fastball and refining the secondary stuff. He’ll likely open at Greenville.
Kopech was the second of Boston's two first-round picks in the 2014 draft. Coming out of high school, he was immediately assigned to the Gulf Coast League, where he held opponents to a measly .216 average and .255 slugging percentage. His problems with control and command were evident -- nine walks in 13.2 innings -- but his mid-90s heater (touching 97-98 mph) was effective against other rookies. Kopech has a lot of moving parts to his delivery, but has already worked to correct some of that. His secondary pitches are works in progress, but his raw stuff gives him a high ceiling if it can be harnessed. The Red Sox may challenge him at Low-A Greenville in 2015 for his first full-season assignment.
More Fantasy News
No timeline
PChicago White Sox
Personal
July 3, 2020
White Sox general manager Rick Hahn said he has no timeline for Kopech's return from a personal matter, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
ANALYSIS
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Absent for personal reasons
PChicago White Sox
Personal
July 3, 2020
GM Rick Hahn said Kopech (elbow) is healthy but is away from the team to address a personal matter, James Fegan of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Included in 60-man roster pool
PChicago White Sox
Elbow
June 29, 2020
The White Sox announced Monday that Kopech (elbow) will be included as part of the team's 60-man roster pool.
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Has uncertain role
PChicago White Sox
Elbow
June 25, 2020
Kopech (elbow) is expected to be with the White Sox when the MLB season resumes, but his role is not yet defined, Scott Merkin of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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On schedule
PChicago White Sox
April 10, 2020
Kopech, who is coming back from Tommy John surgery, is "on schedule" for a likely return in late May or early June, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.
ANALYSIS
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