By Bruce Levine–
CHICAGO (CBS) — The White Sox welcomed back the best young pitcher in their organization Sunday, as left-hander Carlos Rodon has rejoined the big league club following three rehab starts and a three-month battle with biceps tendinitis.
Saying he’s pain-free, the 24-year-old Rodon indicated he will pitch against the Yankees this week, likely Wednesday or Thursday. Chicago hosts New York in a four-game series starting Monday.
“I was able to establish a true routine,” Rodon said after throwing batting practice Sunday. “Something to do every day. Every day has a purpose. That is the main thing.”
Rodon was brought along slowly by the White Sox front office to start spring training. That decision was made due to the arm fatigue he had dealt with during the 2016 season. Rodon at times balked at the slow pace he was on, but White Sox brass won out on the issue.
The cautious approach proved to be a keen decision, as Rodon suffered from the biceps issue after his one and only Cactus League start in mid-March.
Rodon admitted that his preparation is different and more detailed now compared to seasons past.
“I have just matured,” Rodon said. “When you are young, you feel you can just roll out of bed and just throw. When you don’t get to be with your teammates, you learn to work a little harder every day. I am not going to get very specific about what I do now. I will say there is a plan now of things to do every day. It can be an arm thing, (stretching) or weights.”
The third overall pick in the 2014 amateur draft, Rodon debuted in the big leagues in 2015 and was 9-10 with a 4.04 ERA and 1.39 WHIP in 28 starts in 2016.
” I have not pitched all year so I will be geeked up and ready to go,” Rodon said. “Plus I will pitch against the Yankees. They are a good team who really swing the bats.”
Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score and CBSChicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.