Snow problem? White Sox get ready for blizzard conditions in Minneapolis
MINNEAPOLIS — Here’s a fun little forecast: “rain from late Thursday night until Friday afternoon, when it will change to snow and accumulate 8-12 inches before ending Saturday afternoon.”
Ah, Minnesota. Such a magical place for baseball in April.
And won’t those sub-freezing temperatures expected on Sunday be lovely?
It’s hard to say how many of the remaining three games scheduled between the White Sox and Twins in this series will be played — two if we’re lucky? — but there certainly was some relief when Thursday’s opener got off as scheduled and much doubt about the weekend.
“Even if the weather is still inconsistent, we still have to get in some work,” manager Rick Renteria said. “We might try to work in the cages, get some ’pens done in the cages. We’ll do what we can, whatever the weather permits us to do, and then just adjust, just keep going.”
Sox players had mixed opinions on the subject of bad-weather baseball. Avisail Garcia recoiled when asked what it was like to play last week at Guaranteed Rate Field in snow and temperatures in the 30s.
“That’s the worst that I’ve played in,” the Venezuelan right fielder said. “Who likes to play in that weather? It was, like, 20 degrees.”
The legend grows. Yet shortstop Tim Anderson, who is from Alabama, actually had fun playing in the snow and wouldn’t mind doing it again.
“Yeah, definitely,” he said. “It was something I had never experienced, playing in the snow, and I got to do it. It’s something not every player gets to do. I got to check it off my checklist. I’m ready to do it again. Whatever they decide, I’m with it.”
Entering this series, pitcher Carson Fulmer was scheduled to start Sunday’s finale. The Floridian has yet to experience pitching in brutal conditions, but he’s up for giving it a go.
“I love new situations,” he said. “I pitch in Chicago. And you’ve got to look at it, too, that if we play into October, it’s going to be cold and you still have to find a way to get the job done. But we’re all in the big leagues. We’re fortunate to be here.”
A day after optioning right-handed reliever Gregory Infante to Class AAA Charlotte, the Sox welcomed back right-hander Chris Volstad. The towering 31-year-old, who stands 6-8, began the season in Charlotte despite having allowed zero earned runs in 14 innings, over eight appearances, in spring training.
He has 137 major-league appearances — 125 of them starts — with the Marlins (2008-11), Cubs (2012), Rockies (2013), Pirates (2015) and Sox (2017). He could serve the Sox in long relief or, if need be, as a starter.
“Whatever situation may come up, I’ll be ready to go,” he said.
Left-handed starter Carlos Rodon was transferred to the 60-day disabled list. He’ll continue rehabilitation on his left shoulder and be eligible for reinstatement from the DL as soon as May 28.