As it would happen, waiting for Gavin Floyd's tendinitis to subside will be more of a 15-day type of affair than initially hoped. According to Mark Gonzales, Floyd has "experienced discomfort throwing off-speed pitches", and since those are the key to his existence as a major leaguer, that's plenty reason to shut things down.
A DL stint appears imminent, and at this point in the year, we are nowhere near naive enough to trust a firm timetable on his return.
Axelrod was fabulous Monday night, and Humber is pitching Tuesday night. Those two plus Sale, Peavy, and Quintana equal five, so maybe both of the two rotation mainstays (Danks, Floyd) of the last 4+ years being on the DL isn't the doomsday moment it feels like.
And yet...the Sox are sticking to their plan of extra day of rest for the rotation, come hell or Pedro Hernandez.
Hernandez, left-hander brought over for Carlos Quentin; who Kevin Goldstein identified as having '7th-inning middle relief ceiling' and has struck out all of 48 batters in 80.2 innings across AA and AAA this year is who Gonzales tabs as the guy likely to fill-in for Floyd on Wednesday. Boston relies on a lot of lefties in their order, but this is diving pretty deep into a system where there's little to find.
So while John Danks might be "giddy" about being able to play catch from 90 feet away, and actually ending the day with real progress in his rehab for the first time, it's no surprise to hear "White Sox" bouncing about trade rumors for pitching help, even if connecting who they're interested in to how they would build a competitive package for them requires a lot of work.
Humber could return to his old form. Quintana could continue to pitch over his prospect status. Dylan Axelrod could be a respectable 5th starter. Relying on all three to take place simultaneously doesn't make for restful nights, and puts the Sox in a tenuous positon of absolutely not being able to afford another bump in the road.
Sale said he needed to throw more off-speed pitches against a Kansas City lineup that has plenty of fastball hitters.
“They can swing it and hit well," Sale said of the Royals' hitters. "So I was trying to change speeds on them. Sometimes flip a fastball in there and hump up on one. It's just almost like having a different pitch.”
It'd be nice if Sale's words were above doubt, because he's desperately needed ad because it would seal up the most counter-intuitive White Sox season in recent memory.
Sale and Peavy are the somehow the only members of the rotation from Opening Day that have stayed healthy, and the White Sox are thriving despite their traditional strengths--remarkable health and pitching depth--coming up short, while relying on veteran hitters to rekindle the magic with no back-up plans has gone off without a hitch.
As much as this season could still work as a refutation for those who thought the Sox front office was out of touch with the reality of their situation coming into the year, the events of this season look pretty bizarre and unforeseeable. when said all at once.
Up will need to continue be down, and black will need to stay white for the the Sox to work their way out of this problem, because at face value it appears they lack the tools to.