DETROIT – The Chicago White Sox are hopeful that left-hander Carlos Rodon is ready for the postseason despite experiencing pain in his pitching arm during and after Monday’s outing against the Detroit Tigers.
The 28-year-old Rodon threw just 69 pitches in three innings before leaving the game, which the White Sox lost 4-3.
“He was sore this morning,” manager Tony La Russa said Tuesday. “Hopefully it is a normal pain. We will do a lot of things to prepare it and keep our fingers crossed that Wednesday is ready.”
Rodón has been dealing with arm fatigue during the latter stages of the season. The White Sox have given him an additional break, including a season on the disabled list, but nothing has worked so far. Several MRIs have come out clean, so the team continues to work under the assumption that the extra workload this season is the cause.
Due to arm problems, Rodón pitched 42 innings combined in 2019 and 2020. After Monday, he has pitched 127⅔ innings this year. He is 12-5 with a 2.47 ERA in the best season of his career.
La Russa was asked if Rodón would be ready for the playoffs. The top-ranked White Sox are poised to clinch their first division title since 2008.
“I think that’s why he has to go up on the mound, to evaluate that,” La Russa replied. “We assume he can make one of those (playoff) starts. Yesterday wasn’t a good day, so he has another chance next Wednesday. Hopefully it’s a better result so we can be more optimistic.”
Rodon held a brief press conference after his departure Monday and was far more disappointed by allowing three runs after the White Sox took a 3-0 lead than by arm fatigue.
“Just normal pain,” Rodón said. “Nothing crazy.”
Rodón did not express all his feelings, but La Russa expressed concern both after Monday’s game and again on Tuesday.
“We are definitely worried,” he said. “On a normal break, he would pitch on four days off, but he’s not doing that. He’s getting double that. It’s kind of a pattern that we’ve established throughout the year to give him extra rest. So yesterday was a disappointment.”
Twice this month Rodón has been given 10 days between starts. He’ll get nine more before his last outing of the season, if he can.
“Hesitation is a good word,” La Russa said. “We are not assuming anything.”