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Rodon to have Tommy John surgery this week

Jones, prospect Adolfo to also miss rest of 2019 season
@scottmerkin
May 13, 2019

CHICAGO -- Before Rick Hahn took questions from the media Monday afternoon at Guaranteed Rate Field, he listed off all the White Sox injury updates. That list took the club's general manager a little over three minutes to cover. There was some good news, with outfielder Eloy Jimenez, MLB's No.

CHICAGO -- Before Rick Hahn took questions from the media Monday afternoon at Guaranteed Rate Field, he listed off all the White Sox injury updates. That list took the club's general manager a little over three minutes to cover.

There was some good news, with outfielder Eloy Jimenez, MLB's No. 3 overall prospect according to MLB Pipeline, joining Triple-A Charlotte on Tuesday to test his high right ankle sprain and begin what could be a brief injury rehab assignment. Catcher Seby Zavala, sidelined by left wrist inflammation, also is scheduled to be active with the Knights possibly as early as Tuesday, while catcher Zack Collins is asymptomatic in terms of his concussion and joins the return to play protocol on Tuesday, which takes at least five days.

But the negative side also was lengthy, beginning with left-handed starter Carlos Rodón, who is set to have Tommy John surgery on Wednesday. Here’s a breakdown of the injuries mentioned by Hahn:

Rodon
In listening to the left-hander talk on May 2, it seemed somewhat clear his elbow issue would lead to the ulnar collateral ligament repair to be performed by Dr. Neal ElAtrache in Los Angeles. Rodon entered healthy into this season after returning in 2018 from extensive rehab work related to shoulder surgery on Sept. 27, 2017.

Rodon, 26, posted a 3-2 record with a 5.19 ERA over seven starts this season.

“Given that he has yet to undergo the surgery, it’s still too early to give you a precise timeline in terms of his potential return,” Hahn said. “Given the timing of the surgery, it is reasonable to expect Carlos to be able to rejoin us during the second half of the 2020 season. In the coming months, we’ll hopefully be able to give you a little more precise update on the projection on his return to action.”

Ninety of Rodon’s 93 big league appearances have been as a starter, and Hahn still sees the southpaw filling that particular capacity.

“He's very much a starter long term,” Hahn said. “How he gets reintegrated into the big league level during the 2020 season? It's too early to say.”

Nate Jones
The right-handed reliever underwent surgery to repair a tear in the flexor muscle in his right forearm performed Monday by Dr. James Andrews in Florida. Jones' fourth surgery since 2014 will sideline the longest-tenured White Sox player through the end of the 2019 season.

“Obviously, a great competitor and someone who's worked very hard to get back each time,” Hahn said. “To now undergo another setback is, I'm sure, very discouraging.

“As Nate and I talked about a few weeks ago when it looked like it was heading down this path, there's been a decent number of very fine relievers in the last several years who have had this and been able to be productive into their mid, late 30s. Certainly there's no reason to think Nate can't be one, as well. Get this behind him, get him healthy and see where it goes.”

Micker Adolfo
The No. 8 White Sox prospect will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow on Tuesday, which will sideline him for the rest of the season. The team expects it to be a debridement or a removal of scar tissue, as well as potentially a nerve transposition in the forearm.

Adolfo will be able to resume baseball activity shortly after the season ends, and he’s projected to join the team in 2020 for Spring Training as an outfielder without any restrictions.

“This is an unfortunate side effect sometimes of Tommy John, in terms of the scar tissue build up as well as issues that develop with the nerve,” said Hahn of Adolfo, who had Tommy John in ’18. “Both of these are highly fixable, so we remain very optimistic on his full recovery and returning to us without restriction.”

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