Chicago Sun-Times (Sunday)

Crochet doesn’t get carried away after two starts


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Garrett Crochet is like a lot of players.

“I have always been a fan of playing baseball but not watching,” he said.

When he was down during his lengthy recoveries from Tommy John surgery and a shoulder injury, Crochet had the remote control in hand more than usual. And he learned something.

“I was watching these guys on TV,” Crochet said. “I sat down and watched an entire season of guys hitting home runs off really good pitches. I was like, ‘Man, these guys are good.’ I had respect for them before, but I never gave them the credit. After sitting at home for a year, I started giving them way too much credit. That was the main difference.”

Anyone watching Crochet pitch in the first two starts of his career must credit him with respect. Crochet, who is scheduled to start the White Sox’ series finale against the Royals on Sunday, has allowed one run in 13 innings, striking out 16 and walking only one.

He has become a big deal, especially for a team that hasn’t had much to be excited about in its first seven games.

“I’m aware,” Crochet said of his eyeopening two-game résumé. “My confidence is in a high spot right now. But the beauty of baseball is, you have to do it for six months. Of course, I want the success now, but I also want to sustain it. It’s just sticking to my process.”

A first-round draft choice by the Sox out of Tennessee in 2020, Crochet is starting for the first time since he was a Volunteer.

“The season is six months, and in the grand scheme of it, this has been two starts in my entire career,” he said. “I’m not all of a sudden where I think [I’m all that] because I know I have a long ways to go to be where I want to be when I’m done playing. It’s [about] continuing to stack [good starts].”

Brebbia not calf bad

Right-hander John Brebbia, who exited the game Friday with a sore right calf — the same calf he strained during spring training — wore a boot before doing some work on the field with training staff. An injured-list stint isn’t being ruled out.

“It wasn’t as bad as it was in the spring; we’re still evaluating that one,” manager Pedro Grifol said. “We don’t have to make that decision for a day or two.”

Starts (or doesn’t) at the top

Leadoff man Andrew Benintendi’s average fell to .094 and his slump reached 1-for-20 after going 0-for-4 on Saturday.

“I’m recognizin­g pitches well and swinging at pitches I should be swinging at,” Benintendi said. “I haven’t squared anything up yet, but it’s such a small sample size. If this happened in June or July, [it wouldn’t be as noticeable], but it’s not the ideal start. It’s baseball.”

Benintendi isn’t alone. Five of the Sox’ nine starters Saturday entered with averages of .217 or lower.

This and that

Lenyn Sosa, called up to take Luis Robert Jr.’s spot on the 26-man roster, was 8-for-24 with five walks and a home run with Triple-A Charlotte this season. Sosa batted .201 with six homers in 52 games with the Sox in 2023.

♦ Right-hander Alex Speas, designated for assignment Friday to make room on the 40-man roster for Robbie Grossman, was traded to the Athletics for cash considerat­ions.

 ?? GETTY IMAGES ?? White Sox left-hander Garrett Crochet has 16 strikeouts and only one walk in 13 innings.
GETTY IMAGES White Sox left-hander Garrett Crochet has 16 strikeouts and only one walk in 13 innings.

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