Marshall pushing his elbow to the 'limit'

September 16th, 2021

CHICAGO -- White Sox reliever has not pitched in a big league game since June 29, when he allowed two runs over two-thirds of an inning in a 7-6 victory over the Twins.

It was at that point when a decent-sized tear of the flexor muscle in his right elbow, situated close to where the tendon attaches, prevented him from throwing the ball. But that injury, coupled with the ups and brief downs of his recovery, hasn’t deterred the veteran right-hander from the goal of helping the White Sox in the playoffs.

“We're down to a little over two weeks. What's the point of holding back?” Marshall told reporters prior to Wednesday’s contest against the Angels. “We've got the most important games of the year coming up after we take care of business the rest of the way.

“If this had happened at a different time of the year, if this was spring, I'd be erring on the side of caution. But there's a long offseason coming after we all, hopefully, take that next step and win it all, or go deep in the playoffs. So there's no reason not to try and push my elbow to the limit.”

Marshall has made five appearances for Triple-A Charlotte during his injury rehab assignment, striking out six over 4 1/3 innings, while getting swings and misses with increasing velocity. But after throwing in back-to-back games from Sept. 3-4, the soreness elevated.

The White Sox and Marshall sought out a second opinion to make sure there was no harm in trying to come back; he ended up getting a shot in his elbow to exhaust all options for October. There could be at least one bullpen spot open for the team’s Division Series roster even if the White Sox opt for eight relievers.

“It’s feeling much better now,” Marshall said. “I’ll start a catch program tomorrow, and assuming I didn’t really lose anything during this week that I haven’t thrown, we’ll ramp up pretty quickly [with] the bullpens, long toss and then hopefully a live BP, and then back by the end [of the regular season] or back by the playoffs. Or if it’s round two of the playoffs, whatever I can do to be around and help.

“Very optimistic, especially today. I’ve already done all my work and I still feel I can pick up a ball and throw it. So, really, it was just getting rid of the soreness, but the ball was coming out very well, the stuff was really good on my rehab assignment. … I’m not great at being patient and waiting for things to heal, but the training staff has been excellent as far as I’m concerned, and this little bump ... hopefully, we’re over it pretty quickly.”

Hendriks honored

White Sox closer Liam Hendriks was honored as the team’s nominee for the 2021 Roberto Clemente Award, with that recognition coming on Roberto Clemente Day. Hendriks and his wife, Kristi, have donated nearly 1,000 meals from local minority and family-owned businesses to frontline workers across Chicago through his South Slydah Society program.

Hendriks wore the No. 21 jersey with no name on his back for Wednesday.

“I have a little special patch that'll say Roberto Clemente nominee, which is something really cool,” Hendriks said. “I've got the patch on there, and I've also glued the spare patch on the sides of my shoes that I'll be wearing for the game tonight.

“So, hopefully, I can get into the game tonight. Then all that stuff can be authenticated and auctioned off for a worthy cause, and we can go that route.”

Third to first

• Chicago Bulls offseason acquisitions Lonzo Ball, Alex Caruso, Derrick Jones Jr. and Tony Bradley were in attendance on Wednesday and threw out ceremonial first pitches.

• The White Sox have been atop the American League Central for 133 days this season, including every day since May 7, and are on pace to hit 152 days. The 133 days in first place are the fourth most in club history following 2005 (183), 2000 (169) and 1919 (134).

He Said It

“He's kind of in-between, take a pitch and then chase a pitch. It happens to everybody, his timing's a little off, his swing gets a little long. To expect him to not show the effects of all those at-bats he missed is unfair. Also, you put him in the fourth spot -- that's my fault, that's unfair. So now he's in the fifth spot. He should hit fourth again before the season's over.”

-- White Sox manager Tony La Russa on Eloy Jiménez, who entered Wednesday 10-for-55 in his last 15 games.