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Powell: Sox General Manager Rick Hahn Provides Injury Updates On Micker Adolfo and Carlos Rodon; Other Spring Training Notes

White Sox 2018 Spring Training Opener. (WGN Radio)

By Kevin Powell

GLENDALE, Ariz. –  On Tuesday, Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert and Micker Adolfo put on a display in batting practice at Camelback Ranch. Three days later White Sox general manager Rick Hahn informed the media that Adolfo, the 21-year-old outfield prospect, has a sprained UCL and a strained flexor tendon in his right throwing arm.

“Micker Adolfo reported with some soreness in his arm after some drills the other day,” Hahn said. “We had him examined and unfortunately it revealed a sprain in his ulnar collateral ligament and a strain in his flexor tendon.”

That’s the bad news. The good news is that the type of sprain in the UCL makes it possible for Adolfo to rehab the injury rather than opt for surgery, for now. Hahn did say that surgery is still possible, but they’re waiting on a second opinion.

The injury will sideline Adolfo for at least six weeks. Surgery would end his season.

“There’s a decent chance that rehab will allow him the ample time to heal and put this behind him,” Hahn said. “If that does not work, yes, surgery is an option at some point. But we’re not there yet.”

The Dominican-born Adolfo is coming off a year he hit .264, smacked 16 homers and drove in 68 runs over 112 games at Class A Kannapolis. But his season was cut short after breaking his left pinky finger in  August.

Hahn also provided an update on pitcher Carlos Rodon, who underwent arthroscopic surgery on his throwing shoulder in late September. The lefty won’t pitch in any Cactus League games this spring as he continues his rehab.

“His first outings against competition will likely come in extended spring training, which will then be followed by a rehab assignment. His return to the major leagues continues to be on a path that looks like it’s going to trend to the eight month mark rather than the six month mark. “

Which means we probably won’t see Rodon back with the Sox until June. We’ve seen him throwing on flat ground over the past week, and he’s amped-up the intensity a bit in the last couple days.

The Sox still have hopes their 2014 first-round pick can be an ace, so don’t be surprised if they’re overly cautious as to when they bring him up to the majors.

“We’re going to err on the side of caution,” Hahn said. “This is about putting Carlos in the best position to succeed for the next several years, not about getting an extra two or three starts in April or May in 2018.”

So expect Rodon back on the mound in April. Followed by a rehab stint with one of the affiliates. And then back up in the majors in June.

GAME 1 IN THE BOOKS

Three errors, five homers and 18 runs were scored in a mostly sloppy, very spring training-like game between the Sox and Dodgers on a cool and cloudy day in Glendale. The Dodgers took the Cactus League opener, 13-5.

Tim Anderson got his spring off to a nice start, going 1-for-3 with a three-run homer in the third inning.

The Sox play the Mariners on Saturday.

Stoneman Douglas Hats

Manager Rick Renteria was wearing a Stoneman Douglas High baseball hat when he met with the media before Friday’s Cactus League opener.

“I thought it was a tremendous gesture by Major League Baseball to allow us to wear these,” Renteria said. “They’re going to be able to take these, we’ll sign them and they’ll use them for auction and provide whatever they can to the families and the situation.”

Both the Sox and Dodgers wore the hats for the spring opener. The plan is for all the teams to auction the hats off to raise money and donate to the Broward Education Foundation, the official fund for the Douglas High shooting victims.

Kevin Powell covers Chicago baseball for WGN Radio and anchors sports on The Roe Conn Show with Anna Davlantes, M-F/3-7p. Follow on twitter @kpowell720