White Sox

Green White Sox bullpen loses most experienced arm as Jake Petricka placed on disabled list

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USA TODAY

Green White Sox bullpen loses most experienced arm as Jake Petricka placed on disabled list

Already short on experience, the White Sox could be without one of their most seasoned relievers the rest of the way.

The club placed Jake Petricka on the disabled list on Thursday with an elbow strain. The move is retroactive to Tuesday.

The DL trip is the third this season for Petricka, who is 1-1 with a 7.01 ERA in 25 2/3 innings. Petricka — whose MRI showed no structural damage — also was on the DL from April 5 to June 8 with a right lat strain and missed a month starting June 26 with a right elbow strain. He said he’s not worried after the MRI.

“It’s just another bump in the road we’ve got to take care of,” Petricka said. “We took pictures and it came back very minor. We’ve got a plan of attack and know it will work.

“The previous (injuries) were always instant. This one was more of a gradual. Decent workload going on throughout the previous couple of weeks and just kind of built up and one of the wear-down injuries, not the acute, one-pitch injury.”

The White Sox bullpen has been a revolving door all season long, but in particular the past month and a half. The club is without Nate Jones and Zach Putnam because of season-ending elbow injuries. Zack Burdi’s major league debut was derailed by a season-ending elbow injury.

And, the White Sox traded Tommy Kahnle, David Robertson, Anthony Swarzak, Dan Jennings and Tyler Clippard.

Those healthy in the bullpen include six rookies — Juan Minaya, Gregory Infante, Chris Beck, Dylan Covey, Aaron Bummer and Jace Fry — and veterans Danny Farquhar and Mike Pelfrey, whose nine relief appearances this season are a career high.

With less than a month left in the season, it might be difficult for Petricka to return in time.

“I’m sure it has been really frustrating to get back healthy and go back out and feel a little something again,” manager Rick Renteria said. “We feel bad for him, but you really can’t control that. I think hopefully it’s nothing serious and he’s able to get back. I don’t know if it will be before the season is out. But back and healthy at some point and do what he always does.”

The must-listen Nicky Delmonico White Sox Talk Podcast

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USA TODAY

The must-listen Nicky Delmonico White Sox Talk Podcast

While taking part in the White Sox hitters camp in Glendale, Ariz., Nicky Delmonico joined Chuck Garfien and Ryan McGuffey on the podcast to talk about his impressions of Luis Robert and Eloy Jimenez. But that was only the beginning. 

Delmonico went in-depth about his first major league season, doing hot yoga this winter with Jake Burger, the one White Sox player he expects to have a big season in 2018 (the answer might surprise you), losing a big bet to Tim Anderson.

Plus, Delmonico helps us give away a pair of 3-day passes to Sox Fest and much more.

Listen to the latest White Sox Talk Podcast right here:

Is Luis Robert so good that he'll start the season at Double-A?

Is Luis Robert so good that he'll start the season at Double-A?

Just how good is Luis Robert?

Well, that's the problem. Us on the outside, we don't know exactly.

The White Sox obviously love him, willing to give him big bucks to come play a starring role in the rebuild. Rick Renteria raved about Robert last month at the Winter Meetings, getting White Sox fans all excited by hyping Robert's speed, fielding skills and power.

But as good as the scouting reports sound, is Robert really so good that he'll go from never playing a game in the United States to the higher levels of minor league baseball right away?

That eyebrow-raising possibility was floated Tuesday.

Robert unsurprisingly has plenty of confidence in his own abilities and told The Athletic's James Fegan at the team's hitters' camp in Arizona that his goal is to make it to the big leagues sometime in 2018.

But perhaps the more interesting comment came from Chris Getz, the White Sox director of player development, who said Tuesday that Robert could potentially start the season at either of the White Sox two Class A affiliates, Kannapolis or Winston-Salem, or even at Double-A Birmingham.

Robert is just 20 years old, and he's yet to play a game of minor league baseball in the United States after spending his teenage years playing in Cuba. In fact, his only action since joining the White Sox has been 28 games in the Dominican Summer League. He did fare quite well in that handful of contests, slashing .310/.491/.536 with three homers, 14 RBIs, 12 stolen bases and a sparkling 22-to-23 walk-to-strikeout ratio. But that's not really the point.

The White Sox are in no rush with Robert, or any of their highly touted prospects, for that matter. Not expected to compete for a championship in 2018, there doesn't appear to be any reason to elevate Robert to the highest levels of the minors so quickly without first getting him some experience in the lower levels.

Of course, Getz even mentioning the possibility of Robert starting the season at Birmingham should also show just how good the team thinks Robert is right now. So maybe Robert's major league dream for 2018 isn't as crazy as it sounds?