Vaughn on IL because of COVID-19 protocol

June 4th, 2021

CHICAGO -- White Sox rookie left fielder was placed on the injured list prior to Thursday night’s series opener with the Tigers at Guaranteed Rate Field, with the team acting in compliance with Major League Baseball’s COVID-19 protocol.

“Andrew is currently asymptomatic, and our hope is that, similar to our other IL placements of this nature, he will return shortly to the active roster,” said White Sox general manager Rick Hahn in a statement from the team. “At this time, no other players on the roster are impacted.”

Right-handed pitcher Dylan Cease and outfielder Luis Robert also went through this same situation earlier this season. According to manager Tony La Russa, Vaughn dealt with COVID-19 during the offseason. La Russa also spoke Monday of Vaughn not playing either game of the doubleheader in Cleveland due to major allergy issues.

“I feel good that Andrew will be back soon, and I think our club and most of baseball is feeling very good about how baseball has handled this whole thing,” La Russa said. “I’m just saying, he’s healthy and all of a sudden he was miserable that day.

“He showed us, whatever showed up in the test. I think there have been a couple of tests since then where he’s negative, so we’re optimistic that whatever test he has left to take, it’s a temporary thing. And I’m just speculating because he had that rough day because the stuff in the air. But that’s scientific, I’m just guessing.”

Infielder/outfielder Gavin Sheets was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte to take Vaughn’s place on the active roster. The No. 9 White Sox prospect, per MLB Pipeline, is batting .319/.360/.500 with five doubles, four home runs, 20 RBIs and 11 runs scored over 23 games with the Knights this season.

Sheets has played in 14 games at first base, nine in right field and one in left. The left-handed hitter was taken in the second round of the 2017 Draft and worked diligently this past offseason to add the outfield to his repertoire.

“He came in and lit the clubhouse up with his smile, he was so happy to be here,” said La Russa of Sheets. “The guys are happy to see him.

“It’s a tough way to be here, but we feel really as confident as you can, that this will be a really short thing for Andrew. But the plus is Gavin can come here and we get the chance to share his excitement.”

City Connect debut
The White Sox debut their very popular Nike MLB City Connect Series uniform for the first time this Saturday, and the organization, with the help of Fanatics, will hold a watch party event at Navy Pier in Chicago from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. that day.

This event will feature a Nike/Fanatics merchandise trailer, offering fans another opportunity to purchase the Southside-inspired City Connect jerseys, hoodies and T-shirts. A large LED screen will broadcast the White Sox game, and fans will enjoy live music, exclusive giveaways, photo opportunities with the 2005 World Series trophy, a speed pitch challenge and more.

“It really encapsulates our vibe in this city. I think it encapsulates the South Side a lot,” said White Sox closer Liam Hendriks of the new uniform. “And I'm excited about wearing anything with gothic print on it because that's kind of my general mantra.

“The biggest decision for me is going to be, 'OK, do I go black belt or white belt? Do I go black cleats or white cleats?' These are the tough decisions that we really need to make. So that'll be cool to get a chance to wear them and see how it goes.”

Lou Gehrig Day honored
In honor of the first annual Lou Gehrig Day, White Sox on-field personnel wore the inaugural Lou Gehrig Day patches and wristbands Thursday night. A ceremonial first pitch was thrown by Mike Snedden, who was diagnosed with ALS in July 2020, and the pregame "Play Ball!" announcement came from long-time White Sox fan Eric Von Schaumburg and his family.

Snedden had 100 friends and family in attendance with him. Von Schaumburg, a passionate White Sox supporter, was diagnosed with ALS in June 2013 and has been fighting ever since.

They said it
“It's exciting and congratulations to [the Cubs'] Ryan Tepera. I played with him back in 2015. We were both kind of middle reliever types with the Blue Jays in '15, and we've kind of turned it into where we are now.” -- Hendriks, on winning American League Reliever of the Month for May, with Tepera winning the same National League award