White Sox look to finish homestand with win over Rockies (Jul 09, 2017)
Outfielder Gerardo Parra returned to the Colorado Rockies' lineup Friday after missing a month due to a right quad strain. His impact has been immediate.
In two games, Parra, who missed 28 games, 15 of which the Rockies lost, has gone 4-for-8 with two doubles, a sacrifice fly, three RBIs and one run scored. He made an over-the-shoulder grab in left field Saturday night of a line drive hit by Yolmer Sanchez in the third inning after starter Jeff Hoffman issued a one-out walk, enabling Hoffman to avoid potential trouble in that inning.
Parra will try to help the Rockies win the rubber game of their series Sunday with the Chicago White Sox and finish a seven-game homestand with four victories.
Parra is hitting .327 in 51 games with eight doubles, six homers and 31 RBIs.
Parra was injured on June 6 and went on the 10-day disabled list the following day. He played three rehab games earlier this week with Triple-A Albuquerque before being reinstated Friday.
"He was swinging the bat really well before the injury," Rockies manager Bud Black said. "But when he's right, he can do a lot of things. He hits the ball over the fence. He can hit in the gap. He sprays the ball around the field."
Parra also can spell Mark Reynolds at first, which is important since Ian Desmond, who can play that position, went on the 10-day disabled list Monday. But Parra's contribution goes beyond the field into other vital, but unseen areas.
"He brings an energy. He brings a component of looseness and having fun and a professionalism at the same time," Black said, "because he knows what this is all about. But he does it in a way that can lift guys up to get them to loosen up, because there's a lot of times where this game can be pressure-packed for players."
Left-hander Kyle Freeland (8-7, 4.09) will oppose the White Sox for the first time. Chicago left-hander Carlos Rodon (1-1, 1.59) has never faced the Rockies.
In his last start against Cincinnati on Tuesday, Freeland received a stern fourth-inning lecture on the mound from Black, a one-on-one meeting after Black dispersed the infielders. Freeland proceeded to retire the next eight batters he faced before giving up a home run.
Freeland allowed eight hits and five runs in 5 2/3 innings against the Reds and is 0-3 with a 7.13 ERA in his past three starts.
Rodon won his last start Monday at Oakland, allowing two runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings with 10 strikeouts. It was his fifth career game with 10 or more strikeouts and third in his past four starts dating to 2016. Rodon was on the disabled list this season from April 2-June 27 with left biceps bursitis.
The Rockies (51-39) are a season-high 9 1/2 games behind the rampaging Dodgers in the National League West but only three games behind second-place Arizona. The Rockies, losers of 13 of their past 17 games, still lead the Cubs by 6 1/2 games for the second NL wild-card spot.
Unlike the Rockies, the White Sox (38-48) do not have designs on October. They went 13-10 in April, but their record since then is 25-38.
"Obviously we started off pretty well," White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "I think we've taken a hit on the starting (pitching) side a little bit.
"Going into the break, let everybody assess what they've done or not done. And we'll come out of it ourselves assessing and trying to evaluate what we've done or not done and see if we can kind of create a formula that'll help us continue to drive and move forward."