The injuries continue to pile up for the White Sox, but they still found a way to make Tuesday night's game against the host Detroit Tigers interesting.
Called up to replace injured starter Chris Sale, who officially landed on the 15-day disabled list with a flexor muscle strain in his left arm, Charlie Leesman came up from Class AAA Charlotte and was no match against Detroit standout Justin Verlander.
Leesman gave up 5 straight hits to open the second inning, including Ian Kinsler's 2-run double and Miguel Cabrera's 2-run homer, and it looked like the Tigers would cruise from there. As for Leesman, he could be headed back to the minor leagues after allowing 6 runs on 9 hits and a walk in 2⅔ innings.
But the White Sox continued a season-long trend and rallied back from an early 6-1 deficit before falling 8-6.
Paul Konerko's run-scoring single with two outs in the ninth inning and Adam Dunn's 2-run homer made it close, and the Tigers had to sweat it out when Dayan Viciedo (4-for-4) followed Dunn with a walk before Alexei Ramirez flied out.
Mounting injuries are much more important to the Sox than wins and losses at the moment, and the news on Sale is about as positive as possible.
Flexor muscle strains can be red flags that ultimately lead to elbow surgery, but an MRI performed Monday came back clean.
"We came back and the first words out of the doctor's mouth were, 'Your UCL looks excellent,' " Sale told reporters Tuesday. "It's just flexor inflammation. I don't know if it's a strain or not. I heard 'UCL was excellent' and I walked out. That's all I needed to hear."
Sale is hoping to be back on the mound when the White Sox are in Cleveland, May 2-4.
"You are talking about missing 2 starts," Sale said. "Obviously, if it was to linger, which, knock on wood, I don't think there's any chance of it actually happening, if I was to miss 4 starts, then I think there's room for that. I think obviously a week from now I'll probably be off a mound throwing a bullpen and be ready to go for Cleveland."
Center fielder Adam Eaton missed his third straight game Tuesday.
Originally diagnosed with a mild left hamstring strain, Eaton told reporters the soreness is in his left knee.
"Apparently there's a tendon that is kind of rolling over on the inside back part of my knee," he told mlb.com. "It's been kind of an easier fix. We're making sure the tendon doesn't move and that equals no pain."
Eaton, injured in Saturday's game against the Rangers, is hoping to play against the Tigers Wednesday or Thursday, but that remains to be seen.
"He's always going to say he's feeling great," manager Robin Ventura said. "He said he was feeling fine the other day and he wasn't. We'll see how he moves around."
Third baseman Conor Gillaspie sat out Tuesday with a sore left hand and he could miss the next game or two.
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