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White Sox injury updates: Chris Sale therapy a course for a horse

Plus: David Robertson, Jake Petricka and Conor Gillaspie all have their own kinds of soreness

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A few weeks ago on the South Side Sox podcast, Will Carroll said Chris Sale was receiving an unusual/fascinating form of treatment that he wasn't at liberty to disclose just yet.

With Sale still on track to make his first regular-season start on April 12, Carroll made his big reveal: Sale is using pulsed elecromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy, which is more popular among veterinarians than MLB trainers:

Sale is one of the first in baseball known to use "PEMF" (pulsed electromagnetic field) as part of his rehab. While electrical stimulation is a very common modality, PEMF is a far more intense treatment that inducts the electricity into the body. Sale is using this electrical treatment to help heal his broken foot as well as the associated ligament damage. [...]

The technology is widely used for thoroughbred horses. Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner I’ll Have Another used the device to help get him through those wins, but he couldn’t make it to the Belmont due to injuries that retired him.

Carroll goes into the details, including what it feels like to be on the receiving end of the pulses. The more I read into the particulars at the cellular level, the more I envision Sale transforming into Magneto. Hopefully this works, if only because we can get some mileage out of it. And I guess the "missing only one start" thing would be cool, too.


For now, Sale is on a shelf that's growing crowded -- although none of the other cases appear to be as serious.

David Robertson: He's dealing with "a little soreness in his forearm," which has kept him out of Cactus League action since Saturday, but isn't keeping him from throwing bullpen sessions. He's downplaying it to "tweak"-level concern ...

"I don't think anything is wrong. I'm not going for MRIs or anything like that," said an upbeat Robertson, who last pitched in a Cactus League game Saturday against the Royals. "I just got a little soreness. This late in the [spring] season, I don't want to sit there and push something and end up being injured for the start of the season.

"That's the big thing. I have a little soreness. It's not bad. I don't foresee a problem. I just don't want to injure myself worse when I've got a week or two to get it right."

... and that makes sense. But everybody is getting familiar with Robertson and vice versa (to an extent, at least), and since he's had difficulty stringing together good days this spring, the reporters should be keeping an eye on it.

Jake Petricka: He's also dealing with "arm soreness," although it's less specific since he apparently wasn't around to answer questions. All the reporters said Robin Ventura doesn't seem especially concerned, although...

Robin Ventura: ... he has his own fish to fry:

Conor Gillaspie: He's been dealing with plantar fasciitis since the winter, but he says Herm Schneider has reduced the soreness to both ends of the day.

"The workload lessens as you get into the season as far as practice hours go. Obviously, I'm hoping that calms it down a bit, having a little less to do," Gillaspie said. "It's not a big issue.

"I suppose, if it felt the way it did this winter, I'd be in trouble. But Herm and I and the training staff have worked pretty hard on it pretty much before and after the day and that seems to be helping."

If PEMF therapy works for Sale, maybe Gillaspie will be the next to get on board. That'd be one way to call him "electrifying." Maybe the only way.