Micheal Kopech is back! In a flurry of roster moves, the Chicago White Sox announced that Kopech will be returning from the 10-day IL after slipping off the mound on May 26th against the St Louis Cardinals. Upon throwing his final pitch of a scoreless inning, Kopech’s plant foot went out from under him and he tumbled to the ground. He limped off the field and hasn’t pitched in a game since then.
Kopech’s return is a much-needed boost for the White Sox. Kopech has been money out of the White Sox bullpen this year. The hard-throwing right-hander owns a 1.72 ERA this season with 45 strikeouts and a 0.99 WHIP. He has even made three spot starts this season, serving as the ultimate multi innings weapon for Tony La Russa.
"“Honestly, my arm has felt great. I haven’t really had to worry about that this year,” Kopech told reporters on Wednesday. ” There’s been a few ups and downs as far as velocity goes and recovery from day today. But for the most part, I feel like it’s been great this season.”"
The Chicago White Sox needs Michael Kopech to hit the ground running in his return.
The White Sox also called up Jace Fry from Triple-A Charlotte. Fry has yet to pitch for the White Sox this season after undergoing a microdiscectomy procedure in January. He has been with the White Sox since 2017 and has served as a left-handed staple out of the pen. In 2019, he led the White Sox with 68 appearances, tied for the second-highest total among left-handed relievers. In 2018 he led the team with 16 holds and led the bullpen with 70 strikeouts and 12.2 K’s per nine innings.
Unfortunately with these two additions come two huge subtractions. Aaron Bummer and Evan Marshall landed on the injury list. Bummer landed on the shelf with a hamstring strain. It does not sound too serious, however, with Bummer only expected to miss a short amount of time.
Manager Tony La Russa believes that his stay on the IL will only last the requisite 10 days. Still, it is a huge blow considering Bummer is one of the most frequently used guys in high leverage situations. He has recorded two saves this season and has a 3.26 ERA in 30.1 innings of work.
"“Aaron is one of our strong, most important go-to guys. But that’s just part of the game. It looks like it’s just a 10-day thing and we’ll get him back,” Tony La Russa said."
Evan Marshall is sidelined with a strained right flexor pronator. His diagnosis was not so optimistic according to Tony La Russa.
"“The impression I’ve been given is Marshall will take longer.”"
Evan Marshall has had trouble finding his groove this season. After putting up a 2.84 ERA in 2019 followed by a 2.38 mark in 2020 he has been wildly inconsistent in 2021. His ERA currently sits at 5.60 and in his last appearance, he allowed two runs to the Minnesota Twins in 0.2 innings.
The White Sox bullpen has not been good this season. They have an ERA north of 4.00 which is extremely disappointing since they were considered one of the strengths of the team heading into the season. Aaron Bummer even boasted that the team’s goal was to be 90-0 with a lead after six innings. Losing two of your most trusted relievers does not help matters.
"“Just had a run of bad luck,” Micheal Kopech said, referring to all the White Sox injuries. “And being on that side of bad luck the last couple of years, I can sympathize."