With 'pen taxed, White Sox shuffle roster

Rodon's abbreviated start has club calling up reliever

With 'pen taxed, White Sox shuffle roster

CHICAGO -- Adam Eaton had a theory as to why Carlos Rodon's night ended so early and abruptly during the Angels' 7-0 victory over the White Sox on Monday night at U.S. Cellular Field.

"I told him that you are going too well. This game is extremely difficult and it will bring you to your knees when you are at the highest point," said Eaton of the southpaw, who lasted just one-third of an inning in the opener of a four-game set. "It's not startling because in this game, there's those who are humble and those who are about to be."

Rodon entered Monday's contest with a string of 10 straight quality starts dating back to Aug. 11, 2015, featuring a 1.73 ERA during that time. But after a leadoff single by Yunel Escobar and a strikeout by Craig Gentry, the Angels produced two walks and five straight singles for five runs.

Locating within the zone clearly was a problem, with Rodon throwing just 22 of his 41 pitches for strikes. It was not an issue viewed early by Rodon, who said he felt good during his pregame bullpen.

"Maybe too good," Rodon said. "Wasn't really missing when I was down in the 'pen and then it didn't translate over when I got in the game, just didn't happen. Felt good coming out and it just wasn't there. No command, nothing. Just didn't make it happen."

Ripple effects already were being felt from the shortest non-injury related outing by a White Sox starter since Neal Cotts threw one-third of an inning at Yankee Stadium on Aug. 28, 2003. Jake Petricka (33 pitches), Zach Putnam (34) and Dan Jennings (49) all had to pick up the slack, meaning the White Sox need another pitcher with 13 games to be played in the next 13 days.

Outfielder J.B. Shuck was optioned to Triple-A Charlotte following the team's third straight loss, with a corresponding move coming before Tuesday's game. Some if not all of these three relievers won't be available for at least Tuesday's contest behind starter Mat Latos.

"We'll just wait and see how [Tuesday] goes," said Petricka, who allowed one run over 2 2/3 innings, followed by three perfect innings from Putnam and one run allowed in two by Jennings.

Monday's effort becomes another learning experience for the 23-year-old Rodon. He gave up seven or more runs over four innings or fewer during starts against the Pirates, Cardinals and Yankees last season, and still managed to bounce back for a fantastic finish.

"Just kind of forget about it," Rodon said. "I had nine innings of baseball to think about it."

"It's just one of those games," Eaton said. "He learned from it. Discussing with him, he's a heck of a competitor and talking to him about his failures and how he can learn from it and get better as we all do. He'll only be better in the long run for this outing."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.