From Comcast SportsNetNASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Detroit center Darren Helm will miss the rest of the playoffs after surgery to repair tendon damage in his right arm after being hurt in Game 1 against the Nashville Predators.The Red Wings announced Thursday that Helm had successful surgery Wednesday night to repair the tendons.Helm's right arm was sliced by the left skate of Nashville forward Alexander Radulov with more than 8 minutes left in the first period with the Red Wings on the penalty kill. Helm dropped his glove and skated immediately to the bench before being taken to Vanderbilt University Medical Center.The center missed the last 10 games of the regular season after hurting a ligament in his left knee. He is a key player on Detroit's penalty kill unit.
After a rough outing against the Detroit Tigers on July 4 — his last before the All-Star break — White Sox starting pitcher Reynaldo Lopez vowed to be a different pitcher going forward.
“At this point, after a really bad first half, there's not much I can say about that. Starting today, you're going to see a different pitcher going forward for the second half of the season,” Lopez said after his July 4 start through team interpreter Billy Russo. “What is done is done. There's nothing else that I can do to change what is done.
“I can do different things to get better and to be a better pitcher for the year and that's what I'm going to do.”
Two outings later, and Lopez is nearing the point where he can say “I told you so.”
Lopez has come out of the break firing on all cylinders after struggling to a 4-8 record and MLB-worst 6.34 ERA before the Midsummer Classic. Friday, he tossed seven innings of two-run ball, allowing just six hits and one walk compared to eight strikeouts. This follows his brilliant outing against the Athletics on Sunday in which he pitched six innings, allowing just three hits and one run — albeit unearned — with two walks and seven strikeouts.
Lopez exited Sunday’s game in line for a win before the White Sox bullpen slipped up. The offense allowed no such opportunity on Friday, tallying 16 hits en route to a 9-2 drubbing of the Tampa Bay Rays. It’s Lopez’s first win since June 9 against the Kansas City Royals.
Lopez has received a fair share of criticism this season for his struggles, but his recent success should not come as much of a surprise considering how he fared in 2018. The 25-year-old posted a 3.91 ERA in 32 starts, striking out 151 batters in 188 2/3 innings.
Lopez’s strikeout rate in 2019 is up compared to 2018 (8.19 K/9 in 2019 vs. 7.20 in 2018) and his walk rate is down (3.32 BB/9 in 2019 vs. 3.58 in 2018). The major difference is that opponents are hitting .284 against him this season compared to .234 in 2018, while also holding a .319 BABIP, up from .260 last season.
It may just be two starts, but Lopez is backing up his vow to pitch better. Between Lucas Giolito, Dylan Cease and the returns of Michael Kopech and Carlos Rodón from Tommy John surgery in 2020, the White Sox future starting rotation is in good hands. Getting Lopez back to pitching how he did in 2018 will only take that group to the next level.Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the White Sox easily on your device.
Rick Telander, Ben Finfer and Seth Gruen join Kap on the panel.
0:00 - The Cubs beat the Padres from their 6th win in their 7 games since the All-Star Break. Are they really this good or are they just feasting on sub-.500 teams?
7:00 - The White Sox have lost seven straight after the break. Should fans be furious with the slump or still optimistic about the future?
13:00 - The Bears report to Bourbonnais in 6 days. Will the 2019 season be a failure if they do not make it to the Super Bowl?
19:00 - Kap gives out his play of the night in the FanDuel Friday Faves.
Listen to the entire episode here or in the embedded player below.
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