Wednesday, April 17, 2024

White Sox Lose Promising Arm To Shoulder Surgery

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Well, the injury bug is upon us before the White Sox have even played a Spring Training game. According to Scott Merkin, Shane Drohan, the White Sox Rule-5 draft pick had shoulder surgery yesterday morning and he is looking to begin a rehab program at the end of spring. This is not great, as Drohan had some solid upside the White Sox could use this year.

It is unclear the timeline of when he will return, as James Fegan clarified that the surgery was for nerve decompression in his throwing arm, and those timelines can vary. The fact that they have an idea that he can start a throwing program by the end of the Spring is hopeful, as that means he could be ready sometime in the summer to make his major league debut, otherwise they could lose him to another team.

Since he was a Rule-5 draft pick, this makes things a bit more tricky for the White Sox. If a player is selected in the Rule-5 draft, he must remain on the team’s 26 man roster, and if he is removed from the roster, he is subject to waivers. If he clears waivers, he must be offered back to the team he was drafted from, and only if they decline would he be able to be outrighted to the minor leagues.

But, since he is hurt and will likely be placed on the injured list, this makes everything more complicated in terms of how they might be able to get him on the White Sox 26 man roster. According to MLB, “a Rule 5 Draft pick can be placed on the Major League injured list, but he must be active for a minimum of 90 days to avoid being subject to the aforementioned roster restrictions in the next campaign.” Depending on how long he is out for, his Rule-5 status could carry into next year, making his status unclear.

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As if it was already not enough of an uphill battle to make a MLB roster, it just got even more difficult for Drohan. Spring Training was going to be his opportunity to show what he could do, now he will have to wait for that. Now, it is likely that the White Sox will be able to get an extended look at him if he rehabs in the minors and they will be able to make their decision to promote him to the major league roster.

Drohan could benefit from a few guys making the team out of Spring Training, but performing poorly once the season starts, and it would be an easy choice to sub Drohan in for one of them. On the other hand, if everyone in the ‘pen is throwing well, then that could be a tough decision for Chris Getz to make.

Drohan has a bunch of potential, so I really hope that the White Sox give him an opportunity to show what he can do at the MLB level, rather than sending him back to Boston, as I believe that they or another team would definitely take a chance on him.

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