Freddy Garcia scratched from Sunday start vs. Royals

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From the Associated Press comes word that the White Sox have scratched Freddy Garcia from his scheduled Sunday start against the Royals.

Garcia is dealing with lingering soreness in his lower back and the White Sox have options, so they’re going to use them.

Lucas Harrell, who threw four scoreless innings in relief duty Tuesday, will take the mound against Kansas City.  The 25-year-old has allowed just one earned run in 10.2 big-league innings this season.

The White Sox can’t be sure when Garica might pitch next.  It doesn’t sound like an overly serious issue, but the club is currently five games back of the Twins in the American League Central standings and could be dead in the water by the time the right-hander is ready to contribute again.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.