White Sox

Anthony Ranaudo becomes first White Sox pitcher since Mark Buehrle to hit a home run

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Anthony Ranaudo becomes first White Sox pitcher since Mark Buehrle to hit a home run

Anthony Ranaudo hadn’t reached base in eight major league plate appearances and hadn’t got a hit since his high school days in New Jersey. He didn't have any at-bats in the minor leagues, and wasn't given an opportunity to hit while playing for college baseball powerhouse LSU. 

But in his second trip to the plate in the White Sox 8-1 loss to the Cubs Wednesday night at Wrigley Field, Ranaudo lifted a solo home run into the right field bleachers off right-hander Jason Hammel. It was a bizarre (in a good way) moment for a guy who also took a no-hitter into the sixth inning against one of baseball’s best offenses. 

“I figured it was going over Heyward’s head,” Ranaudo said. “I thought it was a double at first. I thought it got stuck in the ivy and I kind of pulled up at second base. I looked back at (the White Sox dugout) and realized it was a home run, from the way everybody was reacting and stuff, and I had to finish out the jog. I think it took me a little longer than I wanted it to, but it was a good experience. It was fun.”

Ranaudo last homered nine years ago as a senior at St. Rose High School (Belmar, N.J.), where he actually once faced White Sox third baseman Todd Frazier (Toms River, N.J.) during a state tournament as a freshman. He also blasted a home run in the New Jersey state championship game as a sophomore in 2005. 

With his fifth-inning solo home run, Ranaudo became the first White Sox pitcher to homer since Mark Buehrle blasted a dinger against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on June 14, 2009. He joined Buehrle and right-hander Jon Garland as the only White Sox pitchers to hit a home run in the designated hitter era (1973-present). 

Ranaudo also became the first pitcher to homer in his White Sox debut since Jack Salveson went deep in a 16-11 loss to the Washington Senators on June 14, 1935. He’s also only the second American League pitcher to homer at Wrigley Field, joining Detroit Tigers left-hander Daniel Norris, who took one out on Aug. 19, 2015. 

Ranaudo, who entered Wednesday with a 17.18 ERA in 2016, had his one-man show spoiled by home runs he allowed to Kris Bryant and Javier Baez. But the former first-round pick out of LSU still won’t forget his White Sox debut thanks to his no-hit bid and mighty wallop. 

“Yeah, that was definitely cool,” Ranaudo said. “Definitely something I’ll remember the rest of my life.”

Tim Anderson likely heading to injured list as White Sox await MRI result

Tim Anderson likely heading to injured list as White Sox await MRI result

Tim Anderson's status beyond having an ankle sprain is still unknown as the White Sox await the results of an MRI.

The South Side shortstop sparked fears among fans when he was helped off the field with an ankle injury during Tuesday night's game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Anderson landed awkwardly while throwing on the run on the rain-soaked infield in Boston. He fell to the ground in pain and needed assistance getting off the field, to the dugout and into the clubhouse. He was slated for an MRI early Wednesday in Boston as the White Sox for prepping for the series finale against former mate Chris Sale.

Anderson was reported as being in a walking boot Wednesday. The team announced Tuesday night that X-rays were negative and that he had been diagnosed with an ankle sprain. While the injury could still lead to a long layoff, that was a bit of good news, at least, but his long-term status is still unknown.

Manager Rick Renteria had little in the way of new information when he spoke to reporters Tuesday night and against Wednesday morning, but he acknowledged that Anderson is in all likelihood heading to the injured list.

"He's getting checked out still today," Renteria said. "Probably, in all likelihood, he goes on the injured list. In terms of how long it is, we don't know yet. We know that further examination will give us more information."

In another rebuilding season, losing Anderson for an extended period of time wouldn't figure to be the difference between the White Sox being in a playoff race or not come the end of the regular season. But it certainly wouldn't be good for the long-term future of the team, which has looked capable of starting to open its contention window as soon as the 2020 season, as Anderson would figure to have to spend a significant amount of time working his way back from a significant injury.

As for what Renteria and the White Sox will do in the short term, the manager said he can lean on the versatile Leury Garcia, as well as Jose Rondon, to fill the hole at shortstop. Garcia has been the White Sox everyday center fielder all season long but has the versatility to play on the infield. Rondon has disappointed offensively but could be considered the proverbial "next man up" if Anderson misses any time. Renteria could also mix and match, playing Garcia both in the outfield and on the infield and using other reserves elsewhere. The return of Jon Jay helps the White Sox in this case, too.

"Right now, I'm looking to use Leroy there for a little bit," Renteria told reporters Wednesday in Boston. "Obviously he's very capable of playing shortstop. And quite honestly, might give him a little break. His legs have been barking a little bit, it might help him out a little bit to bring him into the infield. We'll be able to use (Ryan) Cordell and (Charlie Tilson) in the outfield, and then we'll see how we mix in the DH spot for all of these guys, try to give them as many at-bats as possible. That's the adjustment we'll make at the moment."

It's still a scary time for the team and the fan base as all parties await the news on Anderson.

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Tim Anderson helped off field with ankle sprain, will be reevaluated Wednesday

Tim Anderson helped off field with ankle sprain, will be reevaluated Wednesday

White Sox fans saw a sight they hoped they'd never see Tuesday night.

Tim Anderson was helped off the field with an ankle injury in the fifth inning of Tuesday night's game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, hurt while making a play on a ground ball on a wet night in Massachusetts.

The White Sox announced later in the evening that Anderson has a sprained ankle and that X-rays were negative. The team added that Anderson will be reevaluated Wednesday.

Anderson made an on-the-run throw to nab J.D. Martinez at first base, but a play that Anderson has made look fairly routine over the past couple seasons this time included a slip on the rain-soaked infield. The White Sox star shortstop fell to the ground in pain immediately. After having his ankle briefly checked by the trainer, Anderson was helped off the field, into the dugout and into the clubhouse.

The rain poured down on Fenway Park on Tuesday night. The start of the game was delayed a half hour, but the teams played through steady rains throughout, worsening playing conditions, something the White Sox and every team across baseball have had to deal with quite often this season.

The degree of Anderson's ankle sprain is unknown, but the sight of him coming off the field was a nightmarish one for the White Sox and their fans. A sigh of relief came with the team's update, which did not include the words "Achilles" or "tear."

Anderson has emerged as one of the faces of the franchise this season, earning AL Player of the Month honors after a sensational April and earning national attention for flipping his bat after home runs and his mission to make what he calls a "boring" game more fun. He's got a .317/.342/.491 slash line on the season.

Anderson is undoubtedly a core piece for the rebuilding White Sox, who can pen him in as their shortstop of the future as well as the present.

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