The most injury-plagued first half in recent memory for the Chicago White Sox refuses to wind down without more casualties.
Before Saturday’s game, the White Sox placed Carlos Rodon on the disabled list. At first glance, I assumed it was a way to maximize the All-Star break since it was retroactive to July 6, but that’s only half true.
Rodon did actually injure himself, spraining his wrist in a very baseball injury:
Already struggling on the mound, matters got worse for the White Sox starter on Friday when Rodon said he sprained his left wrist when he slipped on the dugout steps and attempted to break his fall coming out for the national anthem before the Sox’ 11-8 loss to the Braves. [...]
"It’s very frustrating," Rodon said Saturday. "There’s not much you can do. (It’s) tough. I got my butt whipped by the Yankees (in his last start) and then I slipped coming out of the dugout."
Ideally, Rodon only misses one start, since the Sox want to manage his workload anyway. It gets a little more complicated if Rodon needs a rehab start before rejoining the rotation, which Robin Ventura says is a possibility.
This leads to one reason why a strong James Shields start would be appreciated today. If Shields can close his first half with four acceptable-or-better outings, it makes the idea of any Rodon absence easier to handle.
Another reason why it’d be cool to see Shields go seven — the bullpen is going to be some kind of short without David Robertson.
I’m guessing Ventura would rather stay away from Nate Jones after he recorded a four-out save on Saturday, but Jones was needed in the ninth because Robertson is battling pain high on his left leg bothersome enough that it required an MRI.
"We got a MRI to be safe and it showed a mild strain and it's just in a bad spot," Robertson said. "It's making it tough for me to pitch because I can't move that well. Doctors are saying a couple of days, so I'm thinking right after the All-Star break I'll be ready to roll."
Robertson kinda needs his hip, since he relies on a very long stride to produce abnormal extension. Scott Merkin
If Shields can’t get deep into today’s game — or if the offense doesn’t blast Mike Foltynewicz back to Minooka -- the bullpen management could get gruesome. Besides Jones’ high-stress 23-pitch outing, Zach Duke has pitched two days in a row and three times in four games. The four-day layoff will allow Ventura to be a little more cavalier about reliever rest, but considering he’s already lost Jake Petricka and Zach Putnam before Robertson’s MRI scare, he might be loath to risk overtaxing one of his still-healthy guys.