Foster having a 'whirlwind' rookie season

August 12th, 2020

Even though it's his first year as part of the White Sox 40-man roster, right-hander had visions of making his Major League debut during the 2020 season when he first arrived at Spring Training back in February. He even had hopes of breaking camp with the team. But he probably never saw the opportunity he’s receiving now, nor the high level of success he's produced through five games.

Foster has picked up his first two Major League wins, made his first Major League start and fanned 13 of the 26 hitters he's faced, four over two perfect innings on Tuesday in Detroit.

“It's been a whirlwind, a lot of emotions,” said Foster during a Zoom call on Wednesday morning. “I didn't know that I was going to start until the day before. Every day I just go out there expecting if I get in the game, I'm going to go do the best I can and try to give my team the best shot to win the ballgame.”

Foster, a 20th-round pick in the 2016 MLB Draft, has mixed a greater mastery of his changeup with a riding fastball to throw 7 2/3 scoreless innings to begin his career. He can go up with the fastball and down with the change, as he described on Wednesday.

Manager Rick Renteria calls Foster fearless. It’s a trait that will allow the 25-year-old to trust his stuff and proceed without caution while working into higher-leverage situations both now and in the future.

“I'm kind of a guy that'll go out there in any situation,” Foster said. “If that means going in high pressure, coming in for clean innings, it doesn't matter.”

Injury updates

Reynaldo López, on the 10-day injured list with a sore right shoulder, is scheduled to get up and down twice in another side session later this week at the team’s alternate training site in Schaumburg, Ill., per Renteria. Carlos Rodón, on the IL with a sore left shoulder, is still playing catch.

“He’s still progressing,” said Renteria of Rodón. “We’re taking him slowly, and we’ll see how that continues to go.”

López has thrown just two-thirds of an inning this season; he exited in the first inning of his July 26 start against the Twins. Rodón has thrown 5 2/3 innings over two starts.

Left-handed reliever Aaron Bummer, sidelined by a strained left biceps, is coming along, according to Renteria.

“Feeling better,” said Renteria. “The biceps is loosening up. He is continuing to get treated, but he’s doing better.”

Third to first

• Renteria gave third baseman Yoán Moncada Wednesday off, as Moncada is battling general body soreness and fatigue. Moncada ramped up quickly after missing much of Summer Camp due to testing positive for COVID-19 during the intake process.

“Being able to get him hopefully today and tomorrow, the natural day off, it will be good for him physically,” Renteria said.

Moncada's eight-game hitting streak and career-high 21-game on-base streak were snapped on Tuesday.

• No starting pitcher is listed for Friday as the White Sox wait for more information about the Cardinals and their potential return to action this weekend in Chicago.

“Yeah, really nobody knows, right? They’ve been down for a while,” Renteria said. “We don’t know who’s on the staff in terms of players. We have to navigate and keep it fluid until we have a better understanding of who is going to be there, and then we will make our decision.”

• The White Sox went 4-for-9 with runners in scoring position during Tuesday's 8-4 victory. They had four hits total with runners in scoring position over their previous eight games.

He Said It

“Something that was always so amazing to me about Mr. Kaline is that he was a Hall of Famer, one of the best of all time, yet he never acted like it. He never acted like he was bigger than the game. He always remembered how difficult of a game it is to play. He made sure that he built everyone up. He was a special man, and I know that I surely miss him.” -- catcher James McCann, on Al Kaline, the classy Hall of Famer whom he befriended during his five years playing in Detroit. Kaline died on April 6, 2020, at the age of 85.