Chicago White Sox manager Tony La Russa met with the media on Wednesday afternoon to deliver several updates regarding his team, specifically addressing a pair of players currently on the injured list. All news was good news as the White Sox roster will make significant progress toward returning to full strength in the coming days.
Carlos Rodon to Start Thursday
On the pitching front, left-handed hurler Carlos Rodon will return from the injured list to start the series finale vs. the Toronto Blue Jays.
Rodon last pitched on August 7 against the Chicago Cubs, a game in which he tossed five scoreless innings with two walks and 11 strikeouts. The southpaw was initially scheduled to start the Field of Dreams game on August 12, but the White Sox placed him on the 10-day injured list due to shoulder fatigue the day prior (retroactive to August 8).
White Sox pitching coach Ethan Katz hinted at a Thursday return for Rodon upon meeting with the media on Saturday. Today's comments from La Russa confirm those plans. The White Sox will utilize their sizable division lead and off-days on the schedule to manage Rodon's workload down the home stretch of the regular season, a plan that Katz made public in his media session.
Yasmani Grandal's Return is 'Imminent'
White Sox fans have been anticipating the return of the team's top catcher, Yasmani Grandal, for over a week now.
Grandal suffered a torn tendon in his left knee in a game on July 5. The injury required surgery, but Grandal has been on the comeback trail for the better part of the past month. He began a rehab assignment with the Double-A Birmingham Barons on August 11 and moved up to Triple-A Charlotte on August 17.
Rumors swirled regarding the backstop possibly returning to the White Sox for the series in Toronto, but that scenario did not come to fruition. When discussing Grandal's status today, La Russa said the catcher's return is "imminent."
Unlike the update on Rodon, La Russa did not provide a specific date for Grandal's reinstatement from the injured list. However, the White Sox skipper's terminology indicates it will be in the very near future. The White Sox have a plan in place for Rodon that necessitates his return on Thursday in Toronto, but it wouldn't come as a surprise to see Grandal follow shortly after and rejoin the team when they begin a series with the Cubs on Friday.