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Lopez tentatively set to start Friday vs. Rays

Right-hander has been on DL with back strain since Aug. 19
MLB.com

MINNEAPOLIS -- It appears White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez will likely make his return to the rotation this weekend.

Prior to Wednesday's game against the Twins, manager Rick Renteria said Lopez is tentatively slated to start Friday against the Rays. Lopez, who has been on the disabled list with a back strain, threw a second bullpen session on Tuesday at Target Field.

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MINNEAPOLIS -- It appears White Sox right-hander Reynaldo Lopez will likely make his return to the rotation this weekend.

Prior to Wednesday's game against the Twins, manager Rick Renteria said Lopez is tentatively slated to start Friday against the Rays. Lopez, who has been on the disabled list with a back strain, threw a second bullpen session on Tuesday at Target Field.

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"His side went well. His side went very, very well," Renteria said. "We will just see how we set it up. Right now, it looks like it will be [Lopez]."

Lopez went on the DL on Aug. 19 after making a pair of starts for the White Sox in which he allowed eight runs on nine hits over 10 1/3 innings. In his last outing, Lopez allowed six runs in 4 1/3 innings in a loss to the Rangers on Aug. 17.

Video: CWS@TEX: Lopez shaken up, leaves the game

During Tuesday's bullpen session, Lopez threw 30-35 pitches without pain. Lopez admitted to feeling good the following day, in what was likely the final hurdle to clear.

"I'm feeling good," Lopez said. "After throwing the bullpen yesterday, they were surprised because of the way I was throwing the ball."

Lopez said he is ready to pitch in a game, though the team has all but confirmed that will be Friday. When Lopez does return, he is not expected to be on an innings limit after missing the last couple weeks, according to Renteria.

The return of Lopez would be a promising one for a rotation filled with plenty of youth, including Lucas Giolito and Carlos Rodon. Entering Wednesday, the White Sox had a rotation ERA of 5.13.

However, a six-man rotation does not seem likely, if everyone is healthy, to close out the season.

"Probably not, that's still something that we would leave open to a discussion among ourselves," Renteria said. "But there is a chance we would just make an adjustment to the rotation."

Worth noting

• Designated hitter Nicky Delmonico took swings off a tee on Wednesday at Target Field. Delmonico was placed on the 10-day DL with a right wrist sprain on Aug. 26. He is hitting .307 with six homers in 75 at-bats this season.

"He was feeling much better, even yesterday," Renteria said. "I have to talk to him still and see how we are going to expand his workload."

Shane Jackson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Minneapolis and covered the White Sox on Wednesday.

Chicago White Sox, Reynaldo Lopez