White Sox 2B Nick Madrigal is the latest victim to join the list of injuries to the club. In Wednesday night’s game in the bottom of the 7th inning, Madrigal attempted to beat out an infield single and lunged short of the bag and tore his right hamstring in the process. Initially, the injury didn’t look bad until Madrigal collapsed to the ground and crawled forward, needing the trainers to help him into the dugout as he could not put weight on his right leg at all. This injury comes as Madrigal was just starting to show his gap-to-gap stroke, slashing .382/.433/.545 with 21 hits and 1 HR in the last 15 games.
In the meantime, utility players Danny Mendick and Leury Garcia will platoon 2B while the White sox front office explores potential trade options to fill the void. Some options that come to mind are Asdrubal Cabrera, Ketel Marte of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Adam Frazier of the Pittsburgh Pirates. General Manager Rick Hahn will have to decide if the “juice is worth the squeeze” by digging into the prospect pool to get the club some reinforcements.
White sox fans were also given updates on OFs Eloy Jimenez who went down during spring training with a torn pectoral muscle and Luis Robert, who on May 2nd went down with a torn hip flexor. The two seem to be progressing well in their rehab as the White Sox brass remain optimistic that both will be back this season. If the pale hose get back even one of Jimenez or Robert it would be a huge boost to the lineup. The White Sox could also explore trade options to help out the OF in Seattle Mariner Mitch Haniger, Texas Ranger Joey Gallo, or Pittsburgh Pirate Bryan Reynolds. Another OF bat would fill the void in the Sox lineup and potentially give the option to release struggling OF acquisition Adam Eaton who is slashing .199/.299/.360 with an OPS+ of 86, 5 HRs and 27 RBIs.
To end the media call with Hahn, there was also an update on RHP Michael Kopech who went down with a hamstring strain on May 26th. Getting Kopech back would be a huge boost as the White Sox bullpen has struggled in high leverage situations outside of closer Liam Hendricks. The White Sox GM also mentioned that the training staff is looking into what is going on with the uptick in hamstring injuries and how its not just a White Sox problem but a league-wide problem. As of June 10th, 501 players have gone down with injuries throughout the major leagues which is a huge increase from 2019 which had 397 injuries up to this point into the season. Many believe the vast increase in injuries is related to the 2020 truncated season and the ramp-up back to a full 162 game season in 2021.
Despite the injury bug being a huge issue for the 2021 White Sox, they have remained in first place since May 7th as they enter a 3 game series in Detroit up 4.5 games on the Cleveland baseball team. The pitching staff has been a major factor in the White Sox success as they are ranked 1st in the American League with an ERA of 3.22. Given the way the South siders have maintained 1st place status in a weak division, they should be able to tread water up until the deadline even while missing three of their core offense mainstays. It would be a blessing if the White Sox could get healthy by September for a deep playoff run as they have as good a chance as any team in the MLB to win the World Series.
Featured Photo: Chicago Sun Times
* Stats are updated as of June 10th, 2021