Four months after tearing the labrum in his left shoulder and being told he’d miss the rest of the season, White Sox right fielder Avisail Garcia returned and hit cleanup Saturday.
Garcia, who had nothing left to prove on a rehab stint at Class AAA Charlotte, was reinstated from the 60-day disabled list before the game against the Blue Jays. He went 2-for-4 with a double, scored a run and drove in another.
“I’ve been working hard, doing everything right to come back this year,” Garcia said. “Everything is well, so thank God for that. I feel great, and I’m playing tonight.”
Garcia hit .340 with three doubles, a home run and three RBI in 13 games and 50 at-bats with Charlotte.
The 6-4, 240-pounder was injured April 9 while trying to make a diving catch against the Rockies. He went on the disabled list the next day and was expected to miss at least six months.
But Garcia’s recovery went faster than expected, and he began a rehab assignment at the beginning of August.
Garcia, 23, appeared in eight games before his injury and had two homers and four RBI.
“He’s going to help the team,” No. 3 hitter Jose Abreu said. “That wasn’t easy. It took a lot of effort from him to work and to get where he’s at right now.”
Manager Robin Ventura hopes Abreu and Garcia can pack a powerful punch in the middle of the lineup.
Garcia has been touted as an impact player since joining the Sox as part of the three-team trade that sent Jake Peavy to the Red Sox last season. He played in 42 games with the Sox last year and hit .304 with five home runs.
“It’s just a nice surprise to have him back,” Ventura said. “It’s a testament to him and how hard he’s worked. And there is probably some luck in there of him being able to heal the way he did.”
The Sox made a number of other roster moves. Outfielder Moises Sierra was put on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left oblique. Ventura said Sierra was injured during the series opener Friday.
The Sox also designated left-hander Charlie Leesman for assignment, put right-hander Javy Guerra on the bereavement list and recalled left-hander Eric Surkamp from Charlotte.
Ventura said Garcia will have no restrictions and will “get as much playing time as he can handle.”
“I’m going to go all-out, but no diving,” Garcia joked. “Going to play hard every at-bat, every play. Nothing’s changed, except diving.”
Sox icon Minnie Minoso was hospitalized Friday after falling from his boat, team spokesman Scott Reifert said.
Reifert said Minoso, 88, felt queasy on the back of the boat and fell over. Others with him called 911, and Minoso was taken to St. Joseph Hospital to undergo tests.
Community relations director Christine O’Reilly spoke to Minoso on Saturday, Reifert said, and relayed news that Minoso was doing fine and is expected to be released Sunday.
Minoso was an All-Star outfielder and Gold Glove winner during a 17-year career, 12 of which were spent with the Sox.
BLUE JAYS AT WHITE SOX
The facts: 1:10 p.m., Ch. 9, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.
The pitchers: Drew Hutchison (8-10, 4.60 ERA) vs. Scott Carroll (4-7, 4.81).