Five appears to be an unlucky number for the White Sox. While they’ve recently gone back to a six-man rotation with Zach Stewart up, they’re considering dropping down to a four-man rotation with three off-days coming up in the second half of the month.
“It has been on my mind the last couple of days. I’m not sure,” pitching coach Don Cooper said. “With [Mark] Buehrle pitching as well as he has, you are tempted to say, ‘Let’s run him out there.’
“Again, it is what it is right now. We are going to look into it. Get the hottest guys out there.”
Stewart’s start Friday will likely be his last for awhile regardless, but if the White Sox go to a four-man rotation, then Philip Humber could also be bumped to the pen. Humber, one of the year’s most pleasant surprises, has lost each of his last four starts, giving up 18 runs over 20 1/3 innings in the process. His ERA has climbed from 2.69 to 3.56 during the span, and he’s now just 8-8 for the year.
Humber’s exit would temporarily leave the White Sox with a rotation of Buehrle, Gavin Floyd, John Danks and Jake Peavy.
The Blue Jays placed right-hander Aaron Sanchez on the 10-day disabled list with a contusion in his right index finger, per a team announcement on Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to Friday. In a corresponding move, righty Marcus Stroman was activated from the DL (right shoulder fatigue) and will take the mound for the Blue Jays at 9:07 PM ET tonight.
Sanchez, 25, is in his fifth season with the club. He hasn’t looked his sharpest so far this year, going 3-5 in 15 starts with a career-worst 4.52 ERA, 5.1 BB/9 and 7.6 SO/9 through 79 2/3 innings. It’s not yet clear how long he’ll be sidelined, though he could miss as little as one turn in the rotation before returning to the roster in the next week or two.
Sanchez isn’t the only struggling starter in Toronto’s rotation, either. Per MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm, the team placed southpaw Jaime Garcia on the DL (right shoulder tenderness) as well, with lefty reliever Tim Mayza scheduled to take his spot on the roster. In 13 starts this season, Garcia carried a 2-6 record, 6.16 ERA, 4.5 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 61 1/3 innings. Any further decisions pertaining to the rotation — including Tuesday’s starter against the Astros — have yet to be publicly addressed.