CHICAGO -- White Sox reliever Jesse Crain had a strain in the back of his right shoulder during the 2009 season while pitching for the Twins, and missed from April 18-May 4. So he doesn't expect an extended absence with that problem having now resurfaced, placing him on the disabled list Wednesday (retroactive to June 24), but leaving him ready to return when the club begins its second-half schedule on July 13 in Kansas City.
"My rotator muscles get fatigued, and the strain happens," said Crain, who was hampered by a right oblique strain cutting short his Spring Training and then a left oblique strain putting him on the DL from April 21-May 14. "Just build it back up and go from there. I came back fine in 2009, the last time I had this."
This Crain injury means the White Sox have six rookie relievers and Matt Thornton in their bullpen, although Addison Reed, Nate Jones and Hector Santiago are the "seasoned veterans" of that group. Crain could have forced his way through this soreness but understands his veteran presence will be greatly needed during the season's final two months for American League Central-leading White Sox.
"You learn a lot your first year in the big leagues," Crain said. "But once August comes around, you have a whole other month and you are not used to playing that many games in the Minor Leagues. With this game, a lot of guys can pitch, but the biggest thing is mental, especially being in the bullpen. Our guys have kept their confidence no matter what.
"We have half the season left and I'm a big piece of that bullpen. I need to take these five games and All-Star break, rather than try and push through to pitch a game or two before the All-Star break. Hopefully this time will get me up to 100 percent where I'll be good the whole second half."