Rodon Scratched From Start Raising Serious Questions About His Durability

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Rodon scratched after second bout with shoulder stiffness.
Jon Durr/Getty Images North America via Zimbio.

Carlos Rodon was scratched from Thursday’s start with shoulder stiffness. With only 15 minutes to prepare, Mike Pelfrey jumped on the grenade and instantly gave up four runs on a grand slam by Edwin Encarnacion.

Pelfrey survived a tumultuous first on his way to four shaky innings. It certainly was a tall task for Pelfrey to jump into a start minutes before a game having pitched 2 2/3 innings two nights ago. The veteran reached back and battled to mop up four innings and ease the pressure on a tired bullpen.

Cleveland completed the sweep of the White Sox with an 11-2 drubbing and extended their win streak to a franchise record 15 games.

Asked about his shoulder after the game, Rodon said, “Just didn’t feel right.” Rodon added, “Just tight.”

Shoulder injuries are always concerning and just a few days ago Rodon told the Chicago Sun-Times that “It’s feeling really good right now,” after a catch between starts. “I just had a really good catch. Felt great.”

Manager Rick Renteria said the level of concern on Rodon’s discomfort is fleeting considering he hadn’t felt pain in the area lately.

“I couldn’t give you a grade because obviously he’s made his last few starts,” Renteria told James Fegan of The Athletic. “So this was a surprise obviously, to everybody.”

Rodon was put on an augmented throwing routine at Spring Training to lessen the burden on his shoulder as he adjusts to the elevated innings associated with a big-league load. After a dominant performance against the Angels, Rodon was scratched from his next start with the same complaints of shoulder stiffness. The southpaw was later diagnosed with biceps bursitis, a favorable diagnosis considering the parade of horribles. Yet, he didn’t return to the White Sox rotation until almost half way through the season.

After a dominant performance against the Angels, Rodon was scratched from his next start with similar complaints of shoulder stiffness. The southpaw was later diagnosed with biceps bursitis, a favorable diagnosis considering the parade of horribles. Yet, he didn’t return to the White Sox rotation until June 28.

This is concerning. Tightness is never something to fool around with and that it has resurfaced again is alarming. Rodon has only thrown 69 1/3 innings, a mere fraction of the 165 he threw last season.

Rodon has a stiff delivery and after he returned from the D.L. I was suspicious that he might be pitching through some pain. Only he can answer that question, but given his disappearance on Thursday, there might be more to this story than meets the eye. The White Sox would be wise to take a thorough look at what is going on with their prized southpaw and even consider shutting him down for the remainder of the season.

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Matt Enuco
White Sox Insider & former minor league ballplayer | Fan of bunting | Swing hard in case you hit it | Launch angle is silly | Penn G'12