The White Sox fell back under the .500 mark with Saturday’s loss to the Padres, but they’re still in second place in the American League Central standings and will get a big boost this week.
MLB.com’s Scott Merkin reports that first baseman Jose Abreu will be activated from the disabled list before Monday night’s series-opener against the Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. The rookie slugger wound up missing a little over two weeks with what was called “posterior tibia tendinitis” in his left ankle.
Abreu will return to a fantastic .908 OPS, 15 home runs, and 42 RBI. He is part of a high-profile race for 2014 American League Rookie of the Year honors with Masahiro Tanaka of the Yankees and George Springer of the Astros. Tanaka would have to be considered the favorite here on June 1.
Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.
Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.
Earlier, Craig asked if Cubs slugger Kyle Schwarber would play the outfield now that the World Series has come to Chicago, where there will be no DH. The answer to that is no, it appears. Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said that Schwarber has not been medically cleared to play the outfield, CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports.
Schwarber returned to the Cubs sooner than expected after suffering a fully-torn ACL and LCL in his left leg during an early April collision with teammate Dexter Fowler in Arizona. In preparation to join the Cubs for the World Series, Schwarber went to the Arizona Fall League and reportedly saw over 1,000 pitches from machines as well as Single-A pitchers. He doesn’t look like he’s missed a beat as he went 1-for-3 with a walk and a double (that was very nearly a home run) in Game 1, then drew a walk and hit two RBI singles in five plate appearances in Game 2.
At least right now, however, it appears Schwarber will serve as a bat off the bench for Games 3, 4, and 5 until he gets medical clearance.