Get to know Michael Kopech, the White Sox's newest flamethrower and tabloid magazine star
Just when you thought the 2018 season had seen enough top prospects show up in the bigs and immediately begin wrecking everything their path, we're extremely excited to report the following: Michael Kopech is officially a member of the White Sox, and he's brought his brain-melting fastball with him.
Kopech, MLB Pipeline's No. 13 overall prospect (and No. 2 right-handed pitcher), will start against the Twins on Tuesday night. You might have been introduced to him when he was included in the Red Sox trade for Chris Sale in 2016, or when he was lights out at last year's SiriusXM Futures Game. But in case you weren't -- or even if you'd just like a refresher -- here's everything you need to know before his debut.
He throws really, really hard
You probably read the above and thought, "Oh, OK, I've seen starting pitchers that throw hard before, I guess another one is cool." But be advised: There's fast, and then there's Michael Kopech fast. He hit 105 on the radar gun in a real, actual Minor League game back in 2016, then showed up at the Futures Game and did stuff like this:
And if you think what he can do on a mound is impressive, wait 'til you see what happens when he gets a running start:
He works out like crazy
How did Kopech manage to get velocity like that? Natural ability and his 6-foot-3 frame have something to do with it, sure. But it probably helps that he may or may not be the most ripped pitcher in the big leagues already:
Seriously, look at this nonsense:
He's got truly excellent hair
In case the Baby Syndergaard vibes weren't strong enough, get a load of the hair:
Kopech cut a good portion of it off before Chicago's fan fest this year, but it's still a very solid look:
We're not saying, we're just saying:
He's something of a tabloid star
This probably has a lot to do with the previous section. For nearly two years, Kopech dated Brielle Biermann, daughter of Real Housewife of Atlanta Kim Zolciak-Biermann -- i.e., the woman who blessed us with "Don't Be Tardy for the Party." Kopech himself even made a brief apearance on an episode of the Biermanns' spinoff show, "Don't Be Tardy."
Kopech and Biermann split back in March, but don't worry: He appears to have found love again, this time with Riverdale star Vanessa Morgan. The couple that rides in helicopters together, stays together: