White Sox

Tramp the dirt down: Tigers rout Soxagain

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Tramp the dirt down: Tigers rout Soxagain

Monday, Sept. 12, 2011
Posted: 10:20 p.m. Updated: 11:50 p.m.

By BrettBallantini
CSNChicago.com White SoxInsiderFollow @CSNChi_Beatnik
Box score

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If it were a prizefight, this was Mike Tyson demolishing Michael Spinks, or George Foreman devouring Jos Roman. Of course, if it were a fight, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen could have thrown in the towel and preserved his troops for another day.

But this was not a prizefight, and thus the Detroit Tigers showed Chicago little mercy in a 14-4 pasting that opened the final series of the season between the two teams.

Although it is tempting to merely cut-and-paste the September 4 gamerthe 18-2 massacre wherein the Detroit Tigers dropped the Chicago White Sox six feet under and tramped the dirt downthis game had some differences. It was played in Chicago, before a semi-partisan crowd, and not Detroit. It wasnt on national TV. And the White Sox scored four runs, while holding the Tigers to 14.

But otherwise, wow, the evisceration from a week earlier bore eerie resemblance to that of this Mondays massacre: poor pitching, languid play and embarrassment all around.

John Danks got Detroits hit parade off to a swift start, giving up eight runs (seven earned) on 11 hits, some of them of the seeing-eye variety, but none of them coming cheap.

Obviously, I didnt throw the ball very well; thats apparent, Danks said. I dont know if theres a hotter team out there, either. Its embarrassing, but at the same time, you have to realize how good theyve been playing. When I was ahead in the count, I was letting them off the hook. Id fall behind and try to get back in the count, and they hit the ball hard. It happens. Its a good team going good, and even the balls they mis-hit were falling in. Its part of the game, I guess.

Hes making very bad pitches, but those guys right now, they had like seven ground ball base hits, Guillen said. Right now, they are swinging the bat very well and its a combination of both Dankss pitching and Detroits hitting. John has had a tough time the last couple of times with them, but so do a lot of people. Right now, those guys are on fire.

Guillen has done his homework, as everyone in the White Sox rotation has struggled vs. the Bengals; during Detroits current, 10-game win streak, Chicago has accorded them eight, nine, 18 and 14 runs.

Detroit cranked out 21 hits and scored in five of nine innings, often with crooked numbers, in putting together an overall 40-6 run that stretched over the past 22 innings between the two clubs. Ryan Raburn, Delmon Young and Brandon Inge accounted for 10 of Motowns 21 hits and were retired just three times collectively. Raburns four hits marked the third time in his career hes achieved the milestoneall against the White Sox.

Chicago actually held a 1-0 lead after one, with Dayan Viciedo driving home Juan Pierre with a groundout off of Rick Porcello, who eluded all prior Pale Hose bugaboos with a tidy six-hit, three run effort over 6 23 innings. But back-to-back blasts from Jhonny Peralta (two runs) and Raburn on successive pitches in the second gave Detroit a 3-1 lead it would not relinquish. As the game totaled up in uneven fashion, it was more of the same for both the White Sox offense (0-for-7 with RISP) and Detroits (8-for-18).

Nearly the only other highlight was a pair of late homers by Brent Morel, one with two outs in the seventh, the second with one out in the ninth. Both were massive blasts to straightaway center, upping his total to seven homers on the year and five in his past 13 games.

Hes swung the bat pretty good the last 15 games, Guillen said. Its nice to see when a kid goes out there and performs that way and puts himself in a nice position to hopefully finish strong and have a good year.

Its just more confidence and trusting my swing a little bit, said the reticent third baseman. Im just developing an approach. Ive been working more, but not really trying to do anything differentjust trying to let it happen.

While a forgone conclusion in the eyes of most, Guillen was asked whether he felt his team had any fight left in them. The manager, frank as always (he approached the postgame podium with surprise, saying Wow, you really, really want to talk to me. Thank you. Wow), didnt part the clouds with his response.

You have to ask my players, he said. After you lose a game like that, if I say yes, we do, I might be lying. You lose a game like this and get beat up again against Detroit, Im not going to say, yeah, we got fire, because I dont see it We look at each other like, Whats going on here, what happened? But they beat us and Im not going to take any credit away from them.

Danks, for one, isnt going to let his final starts go down without a fight.

I have pride. Im competitive. I didnt have fun today. I didnt have fun at all. Im as frustrated as Ive ever been, he said. I want to finish strong and have a good taste in my mouth heading into the offseason. At the rate Im going over my past three starts, thats not looking good.

Were going to finish on a strong notewe havent given up. Obviously our playoffs hopes are pretty dim. Were going to finish on a strong note and get rolling into next year. Games like this arent fun. They dont sit well with us. Well try to win every game. We signed up to play 162 and more, were going to play 162 and try to win every game we can.

Brett Ballantini is CSNChicago.com's White Sox Insider. Follow him @CSNChi_Beatnik on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Sox information.

White Sox say Carlos Rodon is a long-term starter, but his 2020 role is far less certain

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USA TODAY

White Sox say Carlos Rodon is a long-term starter, but his 2020 role is far less certain

Carlos Rodon does not want to move to the bullpen.

“In my heart, I think I’m a starter,” Rodon told MLB.com’s Scott Merkin earlier this month. “I’m not a bullpen arm.”

In the long term, his team very much agrees with him. The White Sox view Rodon as a member of their rotation in 2021, the next season in which he’s scheduled to pitch a full complement of games, after his recovery from Tommy John surgery is complete sometime in the middle of this season.

“We view Carlos, long term, as a starter,” Rick Hahn said last week. “Certainly a year from right now, I expect to be talking about him as one of the five guys in the rotation.”

But what does that mean for Rodon in 2020?

“Over the course of this season, let him finish up his rehab, let us see where we’re at as a starting rotation, let us see where he is from a stamina and endurance standpoint and how we project him the rest of the year, and then we’ll figure out how to best bring him back to the big leagues,” Hahn said. “Long term, Carlos Rodon’s a starter. Let’s get him through his rehab, and then we’ll talk about his role for the balance of the 2020 season.

“I also know Carlos has said repeatedly, whatever we want him to do to help the team win, he’s there for. So long term, starter. Short term, we’ll figure out once he’s healthy where he’s at.”

Rodon won’t be back from his recovery until summer, so don’t worry about trying to wedge him into the rotation for the first few months of the campaign. The Opening Day starting five seems well set, even while Lucas Giolito and Gio Gonzalez work their way back from nagging springtime issues: Giolito, Dallas Keuchel, Reynaldo Lopez, Dylan Cease and Gonzalez.

Michael Kopech will be waiting in the wings, the White Sox opting to slow-play his return to a big league mound after his own Tommy John recovery. He hasn’t pitched in any game above instructional league since September 2018, and logic points to him starting this season at Triple-A Charlotte until he’s ready to return to the bigs in a way that allows him to pitch meaningful games in September.

That’s when the White Sox hope to be in the middle — or, in a perfect situation, far out in front of — a playoff race. And Rodon could certainly factor into the chase for the first bout of October baseball on the South Side in more than a decade.

“I don’t know what’s in store,” Rodon told Our Chuck Garfien on the White Sox Talk Podcast. “I’m just trying to be ready by whenever they need me ready. There’s a lot of things that go into making a move. Make a move for me, you’ve still got to take somebody off the 40-man, send someone down. There’s a whole lot of correlating moves to that. What the timing is for that, I don’t know. Maybe the guys are doing well and I’m not needed yet.

“Whatever it may be. I don’t know what it is. But when it’s my time, I’ll be ready to go, I know that.”

Rodon can throw pretty darn hard, something that intrigues those wanting to stick him in the ‘pen and call on him to get a few batters out rather than soldier through six or seven innings. But White Sox fans are plenty familiar with what he can be when he’s healthy and at his best, the kind of starter who can mow down opposing lineups.

Either role would be a valuable midseason addition for a team in the playoff hunt. You’d have to figure that this is a bridge the White Sox will cross when they come to it, meaning that Rodon will likely be deployed in whatever area he’s needed.

A wrinkle in all this is that Rodon is not under the same kind of long-term team control as many of his teammates. He’s slated to hit free agency after the 2021 season, giving him a shorter amount of time to show he deserves to be part of the White Sox long-term planning.

Though with the team that drafted him on the verge of making the transition from rebuilding mode to contending mode, Rodon said he wants to be a part of the glory days after living through the darkest days of the rebuild.

“I definitely don’t want to go anywhere,” he said. “I’ve gone through the losses. It’d be so rewarding to chip away slowly, maybe make a playoff game, make a wild card game, who knows. I don’t know what’s in store for our future. But start there. It would be super rewarding for me.”

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Zack Burdi feeling positive after making second return from a major injury

Zack Burdi feeling positive after making second return from a major injury

When Zack Burdi was drafted, he was expected to be a fast riser in the White Sox system, but injuries have derailed that.

Burdi made it to Triple-A in 2016, just a couple months after he was drafted, and held his own in nine appearances for the Charlotte Knights. He returned to Charlotte in 2017, but Tommy John surgery ended his season and cost him almost all of 2018.

Last year, he returned, this time reaching Double-A Birmingham before a knee injury ended his season in June. Burdi last pitched in a competitive game on June 20.

On Tuesday, he pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning against the San Francisco Giants in a spring training game. Burdi’s return to the mound included a first-pitch flyout and two groundouts to second. He talked to reporters on Wednesday about his outing.

“To go out there and have a good Day 1 was huge,” Burdi said. “The last thing you want is to go out there after eight months and not do well and kind of double check yourself and all the work you’ve been putting in. To go out there and to have success and to see all that work come to light was truly good.”


Reports from Arizona had Burdi in the mid 90s, which is a bit off his previous consistent fastball velocity in the high 90s and reaching 100 mph. His velocity was down last year when he returned, but seeing it in the mid 90s in his first outing back this time around is reasonable.


Burdi also showed off his wicker slider, getting a couple swinging strikes on Kean Wong.

The White Sox will likely stay conservative with the 24-year-old right-handed reliever to start the year. If he is healthy and ready to go, he could be a midseason addition to the bullpen.

“My first outing in eight months there was a lot of nerves coming back for sure and I was anxious in the bullpen,” Burdi told reporters in Arizona. “I was walking around a lot, but I was excited. I’ve been working really hard the last couple months on mechanics and trying to get that right for the season so to go out there and see that be put to work was really nice for sure.”


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