CLEVELAND -- Jake Petricka is satisfied to be back in the majors after clearing several large hurdles in the past 18 months.
The White Sox reliever was activated off the 10-day disabled list on Friday, returning to the club nearly two months after he suffered a strained lat muscle. That injury occurred only one game into a return from the 2016 campaign when Petricka was sidelined by a hip impingement that led to season-ending surgery. After making three rehab appearances at Triple-A Charlotte and throwing a handful more times off the mound in Arizona, Petricka is ready to be a part of the major league team once again.
“Very challenging on the mental side and obviously the physical side,” Petricka said. “The hip one was a ticking time bomb from my days playing hockey. The lat, that was one they kind of say it was like a hamstring. You run to first 400 times and the 401st you get a little pull. It made it tough, but we made it through so just another learning experience.”
“That’s the biggest thing, back to a normal routine. I feel like I’ve been rehabbing for a year and a half. It’s not what we are paid to do so I want to get back out there and play.”
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Petricka posted a 3.24 ERA in 129 games between the 2014 and 2015 seasons. He saved 14 games in 2014 and held a trusted role in the White Sox bullpen.
Since then Petricka has only appeared in 10 games, including nine in 2016. The right-hander said his hip injury was hockey-related and ultimately it required surgery. But Petricka feels as if he’s cleared all the hurdles and wants to get going again.
“I feel as good as ever, as strong as we can be,” Petricka said. “Now we are here for the long haul.”
“(The rehab) was a lot of me pushing and them saying don’t be dumb. I think we did it right and we are good to go.”