Levine: Sox Bullpen Update — Jones To Pitch Saturday, Lindstrom Recovering, Belisario MIA
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By Bruce Levine-
(CBS) White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper has updated the cloudy bullpen situation that has been impacted by injury and visa issues.
On closer Nate Jones: Cooper said all systems are go for the former set-up man. “He is scheduled to pitch tomorrow, and we feel he is good to go,” Cooper said Friday. Jones has had a couple of bullpen sessions after dealing with an injured glut in his upper backside since Feb. 15. Jones is ticketed to replace former closer Addison Reed.
On set-up man Matt Lindstrom: Lindstrom injured an oblique on his side 10 days ago. While rehabbing, he tweaked the oblique again earlier this week. “We are going to give him an extra day,” Cooper said. “We know what Matt can do, and we have plenty of time to get him ready.” What Cooper did not say is that Lindstrom will be the primary set-up man from the right side. He will also be used to close if Jones is overworked or ineffective.
On reliever Ronald Belisario: Belisario has been missing in action since the beginning of spring training due to political issues in his home country of Venezuela, and he’s still dealing with a visa issue. The former Dodger set-up man has been a horse, averaging 70 appearances the last four seasons. Belisario is an important piece of the bullpen puzzle.
On reliever Scott Downs: Downs will pitch in his first Cactus League game for the White Sox on Saturday. “I have been working on things with my side sessions, I am good to go,”Downs said Friday morning. Downs replaces Matt Thornton as the primary lefty set-up man.
Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score and CBSChicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.