Major League players are fleeing Venezuela

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This, from a couple of days ago, is sad. The situation in Venezuela has deteriorated precipitously in recent years –both in terms of politics and in terms of basic public safety — to the point where baseball players don’t feel safe there anymore and are leaving their home country and moving to the United States full time:

Uncomfortable with the rampant crime in the country with the second-highest homicide rate in the world last year, [Miguel] Montero renewed his passport in his native Caracas and hurried back to the USA, feeling terrible for the family members and countrymen he left behind.

“I would go from the place where I was trying to get my passport to the house and back. That’s it,” Montero said. “You want to go to your country to relax and have a good time, not to be shut inside your house because you’re afraid to go out. … There are safety concerns anywhere in the world, but you watch the news about Venezuela and more people have been killed there than in Afghanistan.”

We’ve long noted the kidnappings, with Wilson Ramos’ kidnapping chief among them. But simply walking down the street in Venezuela has gotten dangerous. It’s a sad, sad situation.

White Sox shut down Lucas Giolito for remainder of season

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The Athletic’s James Fegan reports that the White Sox are shutting down starter Lucas Giolito for the remainder of a season. An MRI revealed a mild lat strain, which typically comes with a three- to four-week recovery timetable. The third-place, 65-84 White Sox have nothing left to play for, so it makes sense to play it safe with their prized young hurler.

Giolito, 25, had a breakout season. He went 14-9 with a 3.41 ERA and a 228/57 K/BB ratio in 176 2/3 innings. He made his first All-Star team and will likely earn a few downballot votes for the AL Cy Young Award.

Giolito was scheduled to start Tuesday’s series opener against the Twins. Ross Detwiler will start in his place opposite Martín Pérez.