White Sox’ Delmonico, Saladino injured in collision
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GLENDALE, Ariz. — The White Sox lost two more players to injuries Sunday, the result of a collision in the outfield that left Nicky Delmonico with a partially dislocated left shoulder. Giving chase to a fly ball in a game against the Diamondbacks, Delmonico crashed into shortstop Tyler Saladino, who suffered a concussion.
Delmonico, projected to be the Sox’ opening-day left fielder, will be re-evaluated Monday. Per major-league protocol, Saladino will not play for a minimum of seven days.
Running in and toward the line, Delmonico, with his left arm extended upward, caught the brunt of the contact with Saladino, who stayed in the game but later was replaced.
Manager Rick Renteria said Delmonico “extended” the shoulder.
“He didn’t pop it, just got extended,’’ Renteria said. ‘‘We’ll see where they’re at tomorrow.”
In any event, with the season opener 18 days away, Delmonico’s hopes for making the roster appeared to be in jeopardy. Saladino’s chances of making the club as a utility infielder probably took a hit, too.
Playing the outfield regularly for the first time in his career, Delmonico has struggled with at least two fly balls in Arizona. He also made a leaping catch above the fence to save a homer. On this play, it was unclear whether either player called for the ball, and neither player was available after the game.
It’s not the first time the Sox have had problems on fly balls and pop-ups this spring. After a mistake-filled game March 3 against the Royals, Renteria ran the team through rigorous pop-up drills the next morning.
The Sox have had numerous injuries this spring, including five involving top prospects. The worst of those were to Jake Burger (ruptured Achilles tendon), Luis Robert (sprained thumb) and Micker Adolfo (sprained ulnar collateral ligament).
Jones willing to be flexible
Nate Jones, slated to pitch in a B game Monday morning against the Dodgers, hasn’t allowed a run in four scoreless innings, a promising sign for him coming off surgery to reposition his ulnar nerve in July. Jones, 32, figures to be called on in the late innings and possibly in save situations in 2018.
“I’ve been used in many situations over my career,’’ said Jones, who’s willing to pitch any inning.
Jones’ sinking fastball averaged 97 mph the last three seasons, and he’s very close to that this spring.
“I’m not a person who worries about [velocity],’’ Jones said. “It’s still spring training. I imagine once you turn some lights on, it might get a tick or two faster.’’
Jones sees how hitters are reacting to his fastball, slider and changeup, and that tells him all he needs to know.
Non-roster invitee Jeanmar Gomez, who was catching attention by not allowing a run in five appearances and seven innings, has been sidetracked by “a little soreness” in his shoulder, Renteria said.
Gomez, 30, who had 37 saves for the 2016 Phillies, isn’t expected to play catch for another day or two.
Follow me on Twitter @CST_soxvan.