CLEVELAND — Midfielder Luis Robert Jr. left the White Sox's 4-2 win over the Guardians with pain in his right hip/quad area and day to day.
Robert appeared to be favoring the area after taking a Jose Ramirez triple from the right field wall in the eighth inning but finished the inning. Romy Gonzalez replaced Robert, who led the Sox with 13 homers, in the ninth inning.
Robert missed three months with a right hip flexor injury in 2021. He has only missed one game this season. Manager Pedro Grifol downplayed the severity of this injury.
“Robert is just day to day,” said Grifol. “Has some pain in his quad. But he is good. I will give him the day (Wednesday off).”
Burger can get time at second base
Jake Burger seemed far from being groomed as an everyday second baseman, but the Sox coached him at second as they looked for ways to keep his bat in the lineup when Eloy Jimenez returned from the injured list.
”It's past the exploration stage,”said Grifol.
Third baseman by trade, Burger batted .257/.315/.949 with 10 home runs in 106 plate appearances after striking out in all five of Tuesday's at-bats.
Yoan Moncada, whose back injury opened the door in third for Burger to show what he could do offensively, locked in a hot corner. Jimenez will begin his minor league rehab stint on Wednesday and, while he is expected to get more playing time in right field on his return, he will get plenty of at-bats as a designated hitter.
Burger earned his 11th start as DH Tuesday. He continues to take second place, where he appeared in three games last season, and it will be a challenge. He wasn't the most dexterous third baseman, and the second needed more reach and was more physically demanding.
“If I felt it would help us win, I did,” said Grifol. “He's done it before. He looks fine there.”
“But we will keep it on (the infield), play third, first, work out second. It's looking pretty good there.”
It remains to be seen how much the defensively challenged Jimenez will properly play, but Grifol has made it clear he will play a lot more there than before going to IL with an appendectomy. And by opening the door on second for Burger, the Sox seem willing to sacrifice defense for offensive pop. When you're 20-30, there may not be much to lose.
“Yeah, don't hurt us (at second base),” said Grifol. “We don't need to make a spectacular or great game; we need to make regular plays and execute the fundamentals and throw and swing.”
Jimenez left for a rehab assignment
Nearly three weeks after his appendectomy, Jimenez left Cleveland to join Double-A Birmingham for a game against the Cubs affiliate in Tennessee.
“He will go there for three, four days,” said Grifol. “We'll evaluate it and see when we can add it.”
Maybe as soon as the Sox's next home start and Monday against the Angels.
This and that
Liam Hendriks' closer straight practice session will be Friday in Detroit, not Thursday, as Grifol showed Monday.
– Second baseman Elvis Andrus will likely be on a rehab assignment next week, Grifol said.