White Sox’ Garrett Crochet debuts with perfect inning, 101 mph heat

The White Sox promoted first-round draft choice Garrett Crochet to the active roster.

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White Sox’ Garrett Crochet throws during a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds in Cincinnati, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. The Reds won 7-1. (AP Photo/Aaron Doster)

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The White Sox promoted 2020 first-round draft choice Garrett Crochet to the active roster Friday and threw him into the fire. The lanky left-hander from Tennessee brought the heat.

Entering the sixth inning with the Sox trailing the Reds by five runs, Crochet struck out Brian Goodwin looking at a 100.5 mph fastball. He then fanned Jose Garcia on three pitches, touching 101.2 and 101.5 on swinging strikes, before retiring Tucker Barnhart on a ground ball to first baseman Jose Abreu.

Crochet also threw his slider for a strike in a swift 13-pitch inning (nine strikes). He touched 100 or 101 on six of his pitches.

“I’m truly living the dream; it’s hard to put into words,” Crochet said. “It’s an incredible feeling, knowing they value me to be here and help them on this [postseason] run. It was awesome. My body felt weightless. I felt like I was on top of the world.”

Selected with the 11th pick in June, Crochet took the roster spot of right-handed reliever Evan Marshall, who landed on the 10-day injured list with shoulder inflammation. General manager Rick Hahn said he expects Marshall to return “fully recovered” to the bullpen. The move is retroactive to Sept. 15.

Crochet, who has been working at the training facility in Schaumburg, is projected as a starter but will be used in relief. He’s the first player from the draft class to reach the majors.

“We want to see what he has to offer over the course of the next 10 days,” Hahn said.

“The stuff speaks for itself. We’re just going to see his composure and ability to attack big-league hitters.”

Hahn also said left-handers Aaron Bummer (biceps) and Carlos Rodon (shoulder) might return from the IL before the regular season is over. Bummer is with the team on the road trip; Rodon is in Schaumburg.

“Ideally, we get to see them active before the end of the season, then make an informed decision about all of our lefties when it comes time to set the postseason roster,” Hahn said.

Right-hander Ian Hamilton was designated for assignment.

Happy for Renteria

Hahn said he is most happy for manager Rick Renteria in seeing the Sox reach the playoffs for the first time since 2008, alluding to Renteria being fired by the Cubs before getting hired by the Sox, first as a bench coach.

“His history in this town is not a secret,” Hahn said. “He hasn’t had the smoothest path to the postseason, at least not as smooth as perhaps it could have been had he stayed in the first chair he was in, so I’m happy he’s getting an opportunity to be part of this.”

Abreu shared the sentiment: “He’s a very dedicated person, an unbelievable, unique person. He’s been a father, a friend, a brother for me and for the whole team.”

And the chairman, too

Hahn, whose record as GM was 491-612 in seven seasons entering this one, expressed gratitude for Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf’s patience, knowing he’d likely have to endure bad baseball in the first three years of the rebuild.

“The faith he showed in [vice president] Kenny [Williams] and me, the baseball department, our scouts, player-development people, the resources he provided to execute our plan,” Hahn said. “It took a fair amount of faith from him, so it’s nice to see him witness some of the benefits from that. Especially [as he] frequently pointed out his age [84] when mentioning whether this was worth it for him personally — sort of tongue in cheek, I think.” 

2021 on the mind

Hahn is already working ahead. On Friday, he said he discussed international scouting and potential signees with Reinsdorf and talked about offseason free-agent and trade targets and potential fits with Williams.

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