White Sox

The story behind Eloy Jimenez's red batting gloves

The story behind Eloy Jimenez's red batting gloves

As one of the key pieces to the White Sox rebuild, Eloy Jimenez has had plenty of eyes on him since making his big league debut this season. One thing that has been hard to miss when he steps to the plate is the color of his batting gloves.

The bright red Franklin gloves bring boxing to mind more than baseball, but there is a reason why Jimenez sports the flamboyant gloves.

“I wear them for my grandpa,” Jimenez said in a one-on-one interview with NBC Sports Chicago’s Chuck Garfien.

Jimenez explained that he starting wearing them after his grandfather died from cancer, which happened about a month after his July 2017 trade from the Cubs to the White Sox. He had vowed to make it to the big leagues before his grandfather died, but his big league debut had to wait until the start of this season.

“It was tough that day,” Jimenez said. “After he died I said I’m going to do this for him. It’s going to remind me of him everyday.”

Initially, he wanted to wear pink gloves, but Jimenez said he wasn't allowed to wear pink "on a regular day." Across Major League Baseball, players wear pink uniforms, bats and gear, including batting gloves on Mother's Day weekend. After pink, red became the second choice for Jimenez.

In the minors, Jimenez only wore the red gloves on occasion. They have become a staple this spring training and regular season with the White Sox.

“I am going to remember him all the time,” Jimenez said of his grandfather. “I feel good wearing these red batting gloves for him.

“I said I’m going to wear red and it’s going to remind me of him everyday.”

Jimenez said “the dream’s come true” when he signed his contract extension with the White Sox that cemented his spot on the Opening Day roster. As he lives out that dream, Jimenez still thinks of his grandfather every game.

Before he steps up to the plate for his first plate appearance each game, Jimenez drops to one knee in another tribute to his grandfather.

“When I take my knee down to the ground, I’m feeling he’s behind me all the time,” Jimenez said.

Listen to Garfien's full interview with Jimenez on the White Sox Talk podcast.

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Moncada's moves help seal White Sox epic extra innings win

Moncada's moves help seal White Sox epic extra innings win

To say the 2018-19 White Sox have had an up-and-down season would be an understatement. The season has been filled with more good than bad for sure‒three All-Stars, 42 wins, one possible Rookie of the Year candidate‒but their seven-game losing streak coming out the All-Star break certainly seemed taxing.

Chicago’s Leury Garica-fueled bounce-back win over the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday certainly helped spirits but Saturday’s dramatic, extra-innings win at Tropicana field could be the type of win that really gets the team back on track.

It looked like the White Sox were headed for their eighth loss in nine games. They were down to their final out when catcher James McCann decided to add another chapter to his storybook season.


 

McCann took a slider from Rays relief pitcher Emilio Pagán 373-feet out to left field for the game-tying home run.

It was another huge moment in a great season from McCann, heightened by the fact that there were so few baserunners (total) in this game and that another o-fer in the scoring column would’ve marked the second shutout loss in a week for the White Sox.

Instead, McCann’s heroics extended a game in which the White Sox bullpen‒2 H, 0 ER‒was excellent in relief of Lucas Giolito, who also pitched well.

Over 6.2 innings, Giolito racked up 9 Ks while giving up 7 hits, 1 walk, 1 earned run. The lone run Giolito gave up was a high changeup that former White Sox outfielder Avisaíl García.

This game was without a doubt a pitchers' duel, so it was only fitting that the game-winning run was scored on an RBI-single by  José Abreu in which Yoan Moncada personified "Ricky's boys don't quit" on the basepaths.


Despite the lack of strong offensive production on Saturday night, the White Sox were able to grind out the win in a Giolito start, something that has been a recurring theme for the squad.

As elder statesmen Abreu hinted at, the White Sox need their key players back but wins like Saturday’s will help build confidence in the meantime.

The South Siders head into Sunday’s noon game with the Rays‒and their subsequent series with the Miami Marlins‒with their seven-game losing streak further in the rearview mirror and that is the best news we could hope for as we await the cavalry.

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White Sox place reliever Kelvin Herrera on injured list with oblique strain

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USA TODAY

White Sox place reliever Kelvin Herrera on injured list with oblique strain

The White Sox saw another pitcher hit the shelf due to injury on Saturday.

Ahead of their game against the Rays, the White Sox placed reliever Kelvin Herrera on the 10-day injured with a right oblique strain. In a corresponding move, the team recalled right-hander Jimmy Cordero from Triple-A Charlotte.

Entering the 2019 season, Herrera was expected to be a formidable late-game reliever in the White Sox bullpen alongside closer Álex Colomé. While Colomé (20-for-21 in save chances, 2.39 ERA in 37 2/3 innings) has thrived, Herrera has struggled in his debut season on the South Side. The 29-year-old holds a 7.36 ERA in 38 games/33 innings. As things currently stand, his .326 batting average against and 3.82 BB/9 would be career highs. 

Herrera's struggles are somewhat suprising when considering how well he pitched (2.44 ERA, 48 games/44 1/3 innings) in 2018. He did struggle after the Royals traded him to the Nationals on June 18, though, perhaps a precursor of what was to come from him in 2019:

Kelvin Herrera in 2018:

  with Royals with Nationals
Games 27 21
Innings 25 2/3 18 2/3
ERA 1.05 4.34
BB 2 8
K 22 16
BAA .207 .304

The White Sox claimed Cordero off of waivers from the Mariners on June 7. He previously pitched with the Nationals (22 games, 19 innings) in 2018 and Blue Jays (one game, 1 1/3 innings) in 2019. He holds a career 5.75 ERA in the MLB, but he's pitched well with Charlotte. The 28-year-old has gone 3-1 with a 0.51 ERA in 17 2/3 innings with the Knights, with opponents hitting just .215 against him in 13 outings.

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