Jeff Samardzija is expected to drop his appeal and begin serving a five-game suspension Wednesday, a baseball source said.
With Samardzija, Tuesday’s starter against the Detroit Tigers, out and perhaps Chris Sale starting his suspension on Thursday, Carlos Rodon almost certainly would make his first White Sox start during a three-game home series against the Cincinnati Reds that begins Friday.
Samardzija and Sale, who starts against the Tigers on Wednesday night, both received five-game suspensions stemming from an April 23 bench-clearing brawl against the Kansas City Royals. Four Royals players were suspended after the incident, including a seven-game penalty for Kansas City starter Yordano Ventura. White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers also received an undisclosed fine for what he described as making an aggressive move.
White Sox general manager Rick Hahn didn’t announce the team's plans to handle the situation whenever Samardzija and Sale start serving their suspensions.
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“We’ve got a pretty good idea how it’s going to unfold,” Hahn said. “Shark is starting tonight, Sale tomorrow then we’ll go from there.”
Rodon said he hasn’t learned if he’d make a start this homestand, but the White Sox likely would need a sixth starting pitcher to eat up the extra day and he’s the best candidate. Working in long relief on Saturday, the left-handed rookie threw 63 pitches against the Minnesota Twins. He also threw 87 pitches in his two starts at Triple-A Charlotte last month and thinks he could throw between 90-100 pitches.
The White Sox haven’t announced any starters for their series against the Reds.
“I’m ready to do whatever it takes to win for this team,” Rodon said. “If it’s starting or it’s out of the bullpen or whatever role it is, I’ll do it.”
Samardzija would next pitch at Milwaukee on Monday.