CHICAGO – One thing that’s been a part of the White Sox rebuild since the winter of 2016 isn’t something Rick Hahn wanted to deal with. But it’s a big reason why he was insistent on building depth in the organization.
From his pitchers to his position players, a number of significant injuries have hurt the team’s prospects along the way. A few Tommy John surgeries are in that group along with other ailments that have cost some young players time.
Yet the White Sox rebuild never lost steam as a number of those important players are now at the major league level. But the injury bug has continued to bite the team even in this shortened 2020 season.
On Tuesday, it struck again, as Nick Madrigal separated his shoulder sliding into third base in the third inning of a win over the Brewers in Milwaukee. On top of that, Edwin Encarnacion left the game after a swing in the fourth inning left him with shoulder pain.
The good news for the latter, according to Hahn, is that the designated hitter’s ailment is SC joint soreness and is day-to-day. Madrigal’s is worse, as he’s heading to the IL with the hope that he may be able to return to the lineup by the end of August.
His injury is another one in a still young season for the White Sox. Nomar Mazara was out of the lineup for the first week of the season due to an undisclosed ailment, Reynaldo Lopez landed on there after just one start, Tim Anderson landed there with a groin strain, and on Monday Carlos Rodon joined the list with shoulder soreness.
Could the quick ramp-up to the season be a reason for this year’s injury woes? Hahn would say no, saying the organization took care in making sure not to overpush any player before this most unusual season.
“We’ve been very diligent in monitoring the use of these players and control the ramp-up of their activities,” said Hahn. “It’s a little bit of a countervailing balance when you talk about this being a sprint and not a marathon, talking about each game being worth 2.7 games and all that stuff. But you’re really got to balance the guy’s availability and what’s in their long-term interest.”
But once again in this rebuild, Hahn is dealing with his fair share of injuries as a promising 2020 season continues.