Injury News Keeps Getting Worse for Beleaguered White Sox

Chicago White Sox third baseman Yoan Moncada.

Getty Chicago White Sox third baseman Yoan Moncada.

The misery only seems to get worse for the Chicago White Sox.

The White Sox blew a 5-0 lead on Wednesday night in Cleveland and lost to the Guardians 7-6 in 10 innings. The loss dropped the White Sox 2-10, giving them the worst record in the American League.

The good news for the White Sox is they have scored 13 runs in the last two games. They managed to cross the plate just 17 times in their first 10 games for an anemic average of 1.7 runs a game.

However, the White Sox learned Wednesday that things will likely get more difficult for the offense. Third baseman Yoan Moncada was diagnosed with a severely strained adductor muscle in his groin a day after collapsing near first base while trying to beat out a ground ball.

Moncada was placed on the injured list and will likely be out until the All-Star break and could miss the remainder of the season.

He becomes the third key White Sox hitter on the injured list joining outfielders Eloy Jimenez (strained groin) and Luis Robert Jr. (strained hip flexor). There is no timetable for Jimenez’s return and Roberts is expected to be sidelined through the end of May and perhaps much longer.

“It’s just sad to see these guys go down after putting in so much work in the offseason and spring training to put themselves in a good spot where they can go out and have a really good year,” White Sox manager Pedro Grifol said as he met with the media before Wednesday’s game. “They’re extremely talented guys.”

Who Will Replace Yoan Moncada?

Moncada’s creates the latest hole in the lineup that Grifol must try to fill.

Lenyn Sosa started at third base Wednesday night and went 1 for 4 with a double and an RBI. It marked Sosa’s 12th career appearance at the position in the major league during his 67-game career that began in 2022.

Veteran Nicky Lopez and rookie Braden Shewmake will also get opportunities to play third according to Grifol. However, both have played primarily in the middle infield during their careers.

While Lopez has spent six seasons in the major leagues, Shewmaker has played just 10 games in the bigs.

The trio will try to fill the void left by Moncada, who was off to a good start this season following an awful 2022 season and a so-so 2023. Moncada is hitting .282/.364/.410 in 11 games with three doubles, a triple and a home run.

His slash lines in the previous two seasons were .212/.273/.353 and .260/.305/.425.

“Personally, I think he was just scratching the surface on taking off to having a big year,” Grifol said. “He had played really good baseball so far on both sides of the ball and was doing a really good job on the bases, too. His primary leads were the best he’s had in his career, his secondary leads were the best he”s had in his career. He was taking a lot of pride in the little things of the game.”

Yoan Moncada’s Future is Cloudy

The 28-year-old Moncada’s future with the White Sox is cloudy.

He is in the final season of a five-year, $70 million contract. The White Sox hold an option for $25 million next season that can be bought out for $5 million.

It seems most likely that the White Sox would decline the option and allow Moncada to become a free agent.

The White Sox’s near future doesn’t seem promising with Moncada, Jimenez and Robert missing from the lineup. Chicago was hoped to rebound from a disastrous 61-101 season a year ago when president of baseball operations Ken Williams and general manager Rick Hahn were fired in August.

Grifol survived his first year as manager and has a second season under new GM Chris Getz, who was promoted from player development director. However, it’s hard to imagine the White Sox making significant progress with so many injuries.

“There’s just no way to think that’s going to happen or to even envision something like that to happen,” Grifol said. “It’s not because it can’t happen, it’s just the work that they put in. We talk to them about playing hard, running the bases hard. That kind of stuff builds up your work capacity and allows you to get to full speed.

“It’s just unfortunate. It’s part of the game. These guys are big-time athletes. They’re strong. They’re physical. They run fast. It’s just one of those things. You can’t explain it.”


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