Lucas Giolito had a couple of extra days off after one of the worst starts of his career, but the reason for the delay had nothing to do with the way the Chicago White Sox right-hander pitched last Monday.
Giolito will start the opener of a home three-game series Tuesday night against the Detroit Tigers. The team’s medical staff recommended to push back his scheduled start over the weekend due a small cut on the middle finger of his pitching hand.
He said he nicked the finger when he tried to open a glass water bottle that he thought had a twist-off cap.
Giolito immediately discovered “It wasn’t a twist-off. And so I tried to do that, and I got a little nick right there. So just to be cautious, we’ve been covering it. It’s been healing very, very well.”
He was able to throw a bullpen session without any issues.
“I’m not feeling anything on that finger,” Giolito said. “I personally think it’s in a spot where it’s not even touching the baseball. But I’m not a wound expert. I’m going to listen to our training staff and all that.
“I’ll be ready to go on Tuesday.”
Giolito (1-1, 5.79 ERA) got sliced up by Boston batters in his last start, allowing eight runs (seven earned) on eight hits in one-plus inning.
“I felt fine, I was just trying to make pitches,” he said. “The mental approach and everything was all the same, just trying to execute pitches. I think with two strikes, I didn’t do my job putting guys away when I really, really needed to.”
That 11-4 loss was the only time the White Sox as a whole have been nicked up over the past week. They have won six of their last seven games, including a three-game sweep of Texas at the front end of a nine-game homestand.
In nine career starts against the Tigers, Giolito is 5-2 with a 4.24 ERA.
Detroit will throw right-hander Jose Urena (0-3, 4.57 ERA), against the White Sox on Tuesday. He is still seeking his first win as a Tiger despite two consecutive strong outings. He gave up two runs in seven innings against Oakland and did the same against Pittsburgh.
Urena has faced 26 of the major league teams during his career with Miami and now Detroit, but this will be his first appearance against the White Sox.
The Tigers are mired in a deep slump. They have lost 10 of their last 11 games and were swept by Kansas City in a four-game series. The Royals edged them 3-2 on Monday as Detroit’s hitters went 2-for-15 with runners in scoring position and left 23 men on base.
Akil Baddoo led off the eighth with a triple, but the Tigers left him stranded in the one-run game.
“It’s tough,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “Obviously in a close game like that, you want to take advantage of any opportunities you have. We had a lot more opportunities than we’ve had in previous games, so that’s encouraging.”
Detroit has scored just 15 runs during those 10 defeats. The Tigers pushed across only five runs in the four games against the Royals and now play their next nine games on the road.
“There’s not a lack of focus,” Hinch said. “There’s a lack of production right now.”
–Field Level Media