The White Sox announced Friday that they’ve reinstated catcher Yasmani Grandal from the 10-day injured list and optioned fellow backstop Zack Collins to Triple-A Charlotte. Grandal missed nearly two months following surgery to repair a tendon tear in his left knee, during which time Chicago leaned on Collins and Seby Zavala to shoulder the workload behind the dish. It’s been an odd season for Grandal, who has walked at an astonishing 24.4 percent pace through 246 trips to the plate and matched his career-high in isolated power (slugging percentage minus batting average). But Grandal is also batting just .188, thanks in large part to a .189 average on balls in play. The end result is a nonconventional .188/.388/.436 batting line that still translates to a 134 wRC+ because of that enormous on-base percentage and Grandal’s considerable power. Notably, Grandal’s 26 percent strikeout rate isn’t a huge increase over his 24 percent career mark, and he’s sporting career-highs in hard-hit rate and exit velocity (by a wide margin). There’s good reason to think the batting average and overall batting line can tick upward — provided he’s back to full strength.
More from the AL Central…
- Royals righty Brad Keller exited last night’s start early and is being evaluated for what the club describes as “posterior right shoulder discomfort,” writes Anne Rogers of MLB.com. The right-hander said after the game that his shoulder felt “tight” and “sore.” The 26-year-old Keller has had a rough year overall but looked to be on the right track after a disastrous three-month run to begin the year. Keller pitched to a 6.67 ERA through the end of June, but in his past nine starts he’s worked to a 3.42 ERA (4.37 SIERA) with greatly improved strikeout and walk rates. A former Rule 5 pick out of the D-backs organization, Keller has emerged as a mainstay in the Kansas City rotation, pitching to a 3.50 ERA in 360 1/3 innings from 2018-20. This year’s struggles have weighed down his numbers, but he still possesses a solid 4.01 ERA in 494 innings since the Royals gave him his first big league opportunity. He’s never been on the injured list outside of a two-week absence last summer due to a positive Covid-19 test.
- Twins fans could get a look at some of the organization’s top prospects next month. Rosters can’t expand to the extent that they once did — only to 28 players — but manager Rocco Baldelli said this week in an appearance on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM that the club will likely take a look at some promising youngsters when rosters expand (Twitter link, with audio). “I do think we could get a look at a few of these guys,” Baldelli said, though he declined to provide specific names. “I think there’s value in experience. … Calling guys up in September, giving them a little bit of that, I think helps.” Baldelli specifically pointed to the pitching staff, noting that there will be “some innings available” to the club’s upper-level pitchers. Speculatively speaking, that would seem to bode well for prospects such as Jordan Balazovic and Joe Ryan — the former a consensus top-100 arm and the latter a key arm acquired in the Nelson Cruz trade. Minnesota has given a few rookies some opportunities in the starting rotation this year — Griffin Jax and Charlie Barnes among them — but they’ve yet to promote any of their top-ranked prospects on the pitching side of things (in part due to injuries).