Yoan Moncada likely will need rehab stint before returning to White Sox

“He’s getting better, but there’s a process to this thing,” manager Pedro Grifol said.

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The White Sox’ Yoan Moncada is eligible to come off the 10-day injured list this weekend, but that won’t happen.

The White Sox’ Yoan Moncada is eligible to come off the 10-day injured list this weekend, but that won’t happen.

Nam Y. Huh/AP

Third baseman Yoan Moncada is eligible to come off the 10-day injured list this weekend, but that won’t happen. With White Sox manager Pedro Grifol saying Moncada likely will need a minor-league rehab stint when his sore lower back is well, a timetable for his return isn’t even on the grid.

Moncada landed on the IL retroactive to April 11. Whereas Eloy Jimenez (hamstring) returned from the IL without a minor-league stint, Grifol said Moncada being a position player and Jimenez primarily a designated hitter is why Moncada will need a few games to sharpen up.

“Third base is a reactionary position; there’s some diving involved; there’s a lot of movement,” Grifol said. “So there’s a good possibility that he will [go on a rehab assignment].”

After missing 10 days with a mild hamstring strain, Jimenez did not go on a rehab assignment. He is 3-for-17 with no extra-base hits and eight strikeouts since returning.

Grifol didn’t rule out Moncada returning this weekend when the Sox play the Rays in St. Petersburg, Florida, but the writing appears to be on the wall. From there, the Sox play the Blue Jays in Toronto before returning home to play the Rays next Thursday.

“He’s getting better, but there’s a process to this thing,” Grifol said. “Now he’s missed significant time to where there’s going to be some added stuff to his progression and his return. So probably not, but who knows?”

With Jake Burger hitting four home runs in five games, Moncada’s offense hasn’t been terribly missed, even though he was batting .308/.325/.564. There’s no way to escape the difference in defense, however.

To that end, Burger was out doing early defensive work before a day game that followed a night game.

“He’s going to do early work every day,” Grifol said. “He knows that there are some things that he needs to develop, and [coach] Eddie [Rodriguez] has a really thorough plan with him. We’re never going to stop developing players at this level.”

Burger is hitting .276/.353/.862 with five homers in 11 games.

Colas slumping

Rookie outfielder Oscar Colas is 4-for-26 with no extra-base hits in his last nine games. He singled in the second inning but was caught stealing by J.T. Realmuto, the second time in 14 attempts a Sox base-stealer has been thrown out.

With two runners on and one out in the seventh, Romy Gonzalez pinch-hit for Colas after Phillies lefty Gregory Soto replaced Taijuan Walker. Gonzalez flied out, and rookie second baseman Lenyn Sosa, batting .154, struck out on a low pitch.

This and that

A day after his season-opening streak of reaching base safely in 16 games came to an end, Andrew Vaughn hit his first homer.

† Burger’s fifth homer Tuesday came in his 25th at-bat, which is tied for the third-fewest at-bats to reach five homers in a season by a Sox player. The 118.2 mph blast off Bailey Falter is the second-hardest-hit ball in the majors this season and the second-hardest by a Sox batter in the Statcast era (since 2015) behind Daniel Palka’s 118.6 mph double on June 5, 2018, at Minnesota.

† Right-hander Gregory Santos struck out four of the six batters he faced and lowered his ERA to 3.00.

† The Sox are 3-6 at home.

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