Jeff Samardzija officially dropped the appeal of his five-game suspension on Wednesday, temporarily opening a spot in the White Sox starting rotation.
And top prospect Carlos Rodon is going to fill it.
Dan Hayes of CSNChicago.com reports that the 22-year-old lefty will make his first major league start on Saturday night at U.S. Cellular Field against the visiting Reds. Rodon was called up from Triple-A Charlotte on April 20 and has been working out of the White Sox bullpen for the past two weeks, boasting a 2.84 ERA and four strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.
Rodon, the third overall pick in the 2014 MLB Amateur Draft out of North Carolina State University, struck out 51 batters in 34 1/3 minor league frames before the White Sox opted to promote him to the bigs.
He should eventually replace John Danks or Hector Noesi in Chicago’s rotation.
On Friday evening, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association announced the first set of results for COVID-19 testing as part of the mandatory intake screening process under MLB’s COVID-19 Health Monitoring & Testing Plan. Per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Athletics are not part of this data because their testing has not yet been completed.
There were 38 positive tests, accounting for 1.2% of the 3,185 samples collected and tested. 31 of the 38 individuals who tested positive are players. 19 different teams had one or more individuals test positive.
Sports Illustrated’s Emma Baccellieri notes that the positive test rate in the U.S. nationally is 8.3 percent. The NBA’s positive test rate was 7.1 percent. MLB’s positive test rate is well below average. This doesn’t necessarily mean that anything is wrong with MLB’s testing or that it’s an atypical round of testing. Rather, MLB’s testing population may more closely represent the U.S. population as a whole. Currently, because testing is still somewhat limited, those who have taken tests have tended to be those exhibiting symptoms or those who have been around others who have tested positive. If every single person in the U.S. took a test, the positive test rate would likely come in at a much lower number.
Several players who tested positive have given their consent for their identities to be made known. Those are: Delino DeShields (link), Brett Martin (link), Edward Colina, Nick Gordon, and Willians Astudillo (link). Additionally, Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodríguez has not shown up to Red Sox camp yet because he has been around someone who tested positive, per The Athletic’s Jen McCaffrey.