MINNEAPOLIS — Derek Holland could be headed to the White Sox bullpen.
Barring a last-minute trade of starting pitcher Miguel Gonzalez or James Shields, the White Sox will have one too many arms when Reynaldo Lopez comes off the disabled list. Lopez is expected to come off the DL on Friday and rejoin the White Sox rotation.
Prior to Wednesday’s 11-1 loss to the Minnesota Twins, White Sox manager Rick Renteria said he doesn’t think the team would employ a six-man rotation when Lopez returns. That apparently will facilitate Holland’s move from the rotation into the bullpen.
Holland, who allowed five earned runs and eight hits with four walks on Wednesday, said afterward he’d understand if the White Sox ask him to make the move.
“I’ve got to take whatever they give me,” Holland said. “My job is to go out there and give them something every single time I go out there and I’m trying everything I can. It’s different when you don’t throw 95, 96 anymore. When you throw 91, 92 you’ve got to make some huge adjustments.”
Renteria said nothing had been determined as of yet. But he also acknowledged there’s a chance that Holland, who has a 6.16 ERA in 134 1/3 innings this season is the candidate to move into the ‘pen.
“Is it possible?” Renteria said. “Yeah. Sure. That’s still to be discussed though. I know we’ve talked to (Holland) over the length of the last month or so and he’s actually presented himself and said ‘I know you’ve got kids coming up.’ Sure, that’s a possibility.”
Holland pitched well early in the season but has struggled since the start of June. Still, Holland is happy to be healthy — he’s made 26 starts — after three seasons full of inuries.
“I know what my job is,” Holland said. “I haven’t pitched as well as I wanted to as a starter so far and I’ve dealt with a lot in the last three years. So to be able to say I’m healthy and going as long as I have, and the numbers haven’t been what I wanted, but I’m happy I’m healthy. I’ve got to give credit to the pitching staff helping out with Coop and Hass and getting my mechanics where I need to be to keep me on the field. The results are obviously are the frustrating part, but I’m going to take the health over results at this moment. This is something to continue to learn on and improve. I’ve had to make some big-time adjustments as well. I’m not the pitcher I have been in the past and that’s part of this game is making these adjustments. I’m blessed that the White Sox continue to keep putting me out there and letting me continue to work on things and get myself where I need to be.”