Lopez gets lesson on pitching through pain

Rookie righty dealt with ribcage issue Thursday; Avisail sits another day

August 18th, 2017

ARLINGTON -- A great deal of analysis wasn't needed by White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper to dissect 's pitching performance in Thursday night's 9-8 loss at Globe Life Park.

In fact, when Cooper was asked how he thought Lopez looked Thursday, he responded with one word.

"Hurt," said Cooper, repeating the answer a couple of times.

Lopez lasted 4 1/3 innings in his second start with the White Sox before being removed due to soreness near his right ribcage. The right-hander would have stayed in the game if not for first baseman stepping in and urging his young teammate not to be a hero on this particular night and go take care of the pain.

This pain was felt by Lopez from the time he woke up Thursday. And while it's admirable Lopez didn't want to miss a start, White Sox manager Rick Renteria and his staff still talked to Lopez about erring on the side of caution if something like this arises again in the future.

"It was a specific conversation because of that," Renteria said. "It wasn't something we were aware of. In retrospect, he felt there was a little something, soreness. We were watching him at the beginning of the ballgame, and he was fine.

"Obviously the velocity dropped a bit, and that kind of concerned us a little. He was throwing a lot of changeups, but in the end, he doesn't have to be a hero. None of our guys have to be heroes. If there is something that affects them to the extent of their performance, we want them to know that we're here for them and they will let us know."

Per Renteria, Lopez woke up a little sore Friday, but he's icing the injury. The team doesn't think it's anything serious, but it will be cautious; Lopez's next scheduled start Tuesday against the Twins is not a certainty.

"The fastball wasn't coming out of his hand," said Cooper of Lopez's abbreviated outing. "We thought something was going on, checked on him and decided his [health] is more important. So we took him out, and now we are going to get him well."

Garcia still out of action

Right fielder missed a second straight game Friday due to soreness in his left wrist, suffered while sliding into second base. Garcia felt better Thursday night, and Renteria added that his improvement continued Friday.

"I'm just erring on the side of caution," Renteria said. "He wanted to go out and hit early, and I said, 'Well, if it's calming down, let's give it another day.'

"Keep getting treated, let me know tonight how you feel, and then we can make a determination about tomorrow's lineup. He's coming along."