By Torrence Sorrell-
(CBS) Struggles in the White Sox bullpen have become a common theme this season in the late innings, as Wednesday night’s loss to the Red Sox demonstrated. Despite an exceptional pitching performance from starter Chris Sale, the White Sox fell 5-4 when the Red Sox got to relievers Jake Petricka and Javy Guerra.
In pitching coach Don Cooper’s mind, there’s no time to sulk or look over one’s shoulder. The guys in the current bullpen and the coaches instructing them just have to get the job done as Nate Jones and Matt Lindstrom remain on the disabled list and not in the plans anytime soon.
“Nate Jones is not ready, Lind is not ready and I’m not sitting around waiting on Mariano Rivera to walk through the freaking door,” Cooper said on the Mully and Hanley Show on Thursday morning.
“We talked about this over the years. Anytime you lose a game late like that, those are the most difficult ones, and we’ve had our share of those.”
Winners of eight of their last 11 games, the Sox’s last three losses were decided by two runs or less. They’re still without a true closer after Ronald Belisario struggled mightily in that role recently, prompting manager Robin Ventura to go with a committee approach to closing games.
Listen below to Cooper’s full interview in which he talks more about the bullpen and Sale’s terrific first half of the season.