White Sox put Garrett Crochet on injured list with back strain

The White Sox put the relief pitcher Garrett Crochet on the injured list on Thursday, the fireballing youngster landed on the shelf with a strain on his upper back.

According to manager Tony La Russa, Crochet was sometimes uncomfortable during spring training, adding that his trip to the IL was more of a precautionary measure so the injury would not worsen.

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“There were times during spring training when he felt his delivery wasn’t quite together,” said La Russa. “I think it’s something that may have evolved over time.

“But more than anything, it is a safety precaution to withdraw now. I’m confident in 10 days, knock on wood, it will solve the problem. “

Crochet’s placement is retroactive to April 26th. The first day he can be removed from the injury list is Wednesday, when the White Sox wrap up a short streak of two games against the Cincinnati Reds.

Despite having had some high profile moments of struggle, Crochet has only got one well-deserved run this season.

Even so, he confuses fans because he no longer looks like the same flamethrower he was when he made his rapid promotion to the Major League late last season, blowing the Batters away fastballs at 101 mph. These breathtaking radar rifle readings did not exist this season.

But both La Russa and Crochet, who spoke to reporters on Wednesday before the news of his injury hit, this drop in his blinding pace isn’t worrying, more than anything else, a product of Crochet’s development as a pitcher.

“In adapting to big league hitters, I was throwing in a general direction as hard as possible beforehand. And then I felt like I needed to refine myself and be more of a thrower than a thrower,” said Crochet. “That is the main thing. I feel a lot more like a pitcher right now. I feel very good about what I’m doing out there.

“If 100 come back, it will come back. I’m just trying to get through 162 games, this being my first full season. … As long as the arm feels good, I’m fine with any Velo board.” says.”

La Russa said Thursday that it is possible that Crochet’s pesky back had something to do with the decrease in speed, but reiterated that it was more due to Crochet’s focus on perfecting his command.

Crochet said Wednesday that getting used to pitching over an entire season and in the uncomfortable weather conditions that plagued the White Sox’s schedule in April had been a physical challenge. Crochet made the leap from pitching in the SEC to the major league late last summer and this is his first taste of a full professional season, he knows it.

“It was an adjustment,” said Crochet. “First full spring training and then coming here and throwing in the Chicago weather every day, it’s a little different from what I expected.

“It’s more of a marathon, not a sprint, unlike the college season, which is about half as long. Once you get going, you have to be in the heat of things pretty quickly, and right now I’m realizing that we’re at the beginning of a pretty long journey. “

With La Russa explaining that Thursday’s move was more of a precautionary measure than anything else, the White Sox are obviously keeping that in mind too, so Crochet can be at full strength during the season’s biggest moments, September and October.

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