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Notes: Rodón's push to start; Renteria returns

@scottmerkin
July 16, 2020

CHICAGO -- White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodón got up and down four times during Thursday night’s Summer Camp intrasquad start, having one more trip to the mound on the preseason ledger before the 2020 season begins. And the 27-year-old Rodón fully expects to be part of the White Sox rotation.

CHICAGO -- White Sox left-hander Carlos Rodón got up and down four times during Thursday night’s Summer Camp intrasquad start, having one more trip to the mound on the preseason ledger before the 2020 season begins.

And the 27-year-old Rodón fully expects to be part of the White Sox rotation.

“Right now, I’m preparing as a starter,” Rodón said. “I just went four innings, so I don’t see the point of going to the bullpen after you’ve built up so many pitches. Right now, my role is a starter and that’s what I’m going to do.”

Rodón allowed two home runs to Edwin Encarnación and one to Tim Anderson, but most importantly he felt good on the mound. His slider was sharp, and his fastball sat 90-95 mph, per Rodón. It’s an impressive climb for the hurler, who had Tommy John surgery last May.

“Today I felt really good, better than the last one, which is reassuring,” Rodón said. “I also sometimes have to remind myself it's been 14 months off of Tommy John, and I think not only do I forget it, but some other people.

“I don't like to make excuses for it, but sometimes I have to sit back and say, ‘Hey, we did have Tommy John last year.’ Feeling pretty good now.”

Renteria returns
White Sox manager Rick Renteria returned to the dugout after traveling to California last Thursday for a family funeral. He passed the protocols upon returning to Chicago.

“My family was very appreciative of the fact that I was able to get back over there,” Renteria said. “We know how pivotal a time this is right now, and a very unique situation.

“Obviously, the White Sox understood the situation and so I was able to get back there to be part of our family and just glad to be back. I've been sitting here a few days, waiting for the testing to get through. Thankfully, we were cleared and we're back.”

Renteria stayed in touch with bench coach Joe McEwing via calls and texts during his time away.

Delmonico moves to second
Nicky Delmonico played second base for the first time since being with Class A Delmarva in 2012. He got the chance with Leury García out due to some mid-back soreness, although Renteria said it was nothing more than erring on the side of caution.

“He'll be back in there tomorrow,” Renteria said of García. “He came in, got checked out and was good to go. But it gave me an opportunity on the fly to put Nicky out there at second base.

“The angles are the same from third to second, so we wanted to give him a look. It offers us an opportunity to see a little bit more of his flexibility. I'm sure he'll have some fun out there. He worked out there during the PFPs and drills that we were doing, so it will be fun to watch him out there and see how he responds.”

Third to first
• Gio González will start Friday’s intrasquad game for the White Sox, with Dane Dunning, Aaron Bummer, Jace Fry, Jimmy Cordero, Alex Colomé, Evan Marshall and Codi Heuer also scheduled to throw. Lucas Giolito will start Saturday night, staying on target for an Opening Day start on July 24, with Bummer and Steve Cishek set for the intrasquad contest.

• Dylan Cease struck out five in a row from the third to the fourth during Thursday’s intrasquad action.

He said it
“It's a good year for us to play under pressure and build and get ready for the coming years as well. We have some guys that have some time to develop as well, while they're playing. Lot of young guys. We have some veteran guys that teach the young guys. Interesting team. I think it's a good mix. Like I said from the beginning, it can be a very special group.” – Rodón on the 2020 White Sox

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin and Facebook and listen to his podcast.