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Chicago White Sox activate slugger Eloy Jiménez from the 10-day injured list

Chicago White Sox's Eloy Jimenez looks to the bench after being called out on strikes during the third inning of the team's baseball game against the Detroit Tigers in Chicago, Sunday, March 31, 2024. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

CHICAGO (AP) — The slumping Chicago White Sox got Eloy Jiménez back on Monday, activating the slugger from the 10-day injured list.

The White Sox also brought up right-hander Nick Nastrini from Triple-A Charlotte. Infielder Zach Remillard and right-hander Justin Anderson were sent down, and veteran catcher Max Stassi was transferred to the 60-day IL.

The 24-year-old Nastrini made his big league debut in the opener of a three-game series against Kansas City, pitching five innings of two-run ball in a 2-0 loss. Nastrini, one of the team's top prospects, was acquired in a July trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

“The first couple of innings, it was an out-of-body experience," he said. “It was everything I hoped it to be. It was fun. That’s all I can really say about it. I don’t really have a whole lot of words to describe it because there’s not really words I can use to describe it. That’s how fun it was.”

The White Sox have dropped five in a row and 10 of 11 overall. They have scored just 34 runs during their 2-14 start.

“Everybody here wants to have success. And they work every day to do it,” manager Pedro Grifol said. “But at some point you’ve got to take a step back and just say, whatever it is it is, I’m going to go out there and just have some fun. And that’s what it’s about.”

Grifol said there was a team meeting before the matchup with Kansas City. But he declined to provide any further details.

The oft-injured Jiménez had been sidelined by a left adductor strain. He got hurt on March 31 against Detroit.

Chicago also has been playing without center fielder Luis Robert Jr. and third baseman Yoán Moncada because of injuries. Robert has a Grade 2 right hip flexor strain, and Moncada is dealing with a left adductor strain.

Asked if he was 100 percent, Jiménez responded: “I’m close, but I don’t have any number right now. I feel really good. I feel like I can play like this and help the team.”

Jiménez prepared for his return by taking batting practice and running on the field. He said he didn't think he needed a rehab stint in the minors.

“I feel that with what I have right now, I can help the team. To me, it’s fine,” he said.

While Jiménez was active, he wasn't in the starting lineup against the Royals. He pinch-hit with a runner on first in the ninth and struck out swinging for the final out of the game.

Grifol also announced that right-hander Jonathan Cannon will start on Tuesday against Kansas City, followed by Erick Fedde in the series finale.

Like Nastrini, the 6-foot-6 Cannon will be making his major league debut. He was selected by Chicago in the third round of the 2022 amateur draft.

Inserting Nastrini and Cannon into the rotation creates extra rest for Fedde and Garrett Crochet, but Grifol was non-committal when asked about how long the two rookies would stay with the big league club.

“They are here to pitch today and tomorrow and we’ll take it day by day,” he said before the loss to the Royals. “The one thing we know is that we are comfortable with them pitching at this level. They are talented. But again it’s a debut today and a debut tomorrow so we’ll see how it goes. I’m not going to get too far ahead of myself.”

A six-man rotation is a possibility, and Chicago also has Brad Keller at Charlotte and Mike Clevinger building toward his big league return.

Chris Flexen posted an 8.78 ERA while dropping his first three starts with Chicago, and Grifol said the right-hander will help the team in the bullpen “at some point until that next start comes along for him.”

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