After making three consecutive starts following a return from a left knee strain, Yasmani Grandal said he’s ready and determined to catch as much as possible for the White Sox’ stretch drive.
“Yeah, that’s what I want to do,” said Grandal, who has made only 46 starts at catcher due to back spasms and a knee injury. “I’ve maybe DH’d more than I’ve caught this year. I’ve never done that in my life, nor am I looking forward to doing that. So, hopefully I’ll be able to finish strong, be able to finish catching as much as I can, and we’ll see where it takes me.”
Actually, Grandal has started at designated hitter 24 times and first base three times. He didn’t start Saturday night after making three consecutive starts at catcher — marking the first time he made at least three consecutive starts behind the plate since June 8-11. He left the June 11 game at Texas after three innings because of spasms that ran down his left leg and sidelined him for 35 games.
But Grandal reported that he felt OK after catching all nine innings of Friday’s dramatic 4-3 victory over the Twins in which he hit an RBI single and a game-tying home run to lift his batting average to .207.
“Quite frankly, I thought I was going to feel worse than I did just because I didn’t really get that much sleep the night before,” Grandal said. “I got a 16-month old that’s sick at the house so it’s like getting up every other hour.
“But the funny thing as soon as the game gets here, it’s go time, so all of a sudden that adrenaline picks up. As soon as that picks up, it kind of takes you to the game. I actually felt way better than I thought I was going to feel.”
Acting manager Miguel Cairo understands Grandal’s desire to catch as much as possible and said he would start in Sunday’s series finale.
“The main thing is the communication,” Cairo said. “That’s what I preach. You communicate, you talk. You might disagree or agree, stuff like that. At the end of the day everything has been working fine.”
Grandal would seem likely to start Monday against the Mariners and left-hander Marco Gonzales. Grandal is batting .321 with a .931 OPS against lefties, compared to a .178 average and .493 OPS against right-handers.
This and that
Outfielder Luis Robert was expected to return Sunday and will have his wrist examined with the possibility he could be reinstated from the Paternity List.
o Pitcher Michael Kopech (left knee soreness) could be activated on the Sox’s upcoming trip to Seattle and Oakland, Cairo said. Kopech hasn’t pitched since Aug. 22.