It was only a couple of years ago that Jake Petricka was closing out games for the White Sox, although that seems like a distant memory. The right-hander slotted into the bullpen as a middle reliever to start 2016, but things went downhill after just nine games, as he was forced to miss the remainder of the season after undergoing hip surgery in June. Petricka still holds some decent numbers in his past, such as only allowing five home runs between 2014 and 2015, although he also displayed an inability to get left-handed hitters out during that span. The 28-year-old should be ready to go for spring training and will be in the mix for a bullpen spot, although his days of pitching in high-leverage situations are probably over unless something drastically changes with his arsenal.
Petricka said he's "feeling great" this spring 10 months after undergoing hip surgery, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. The 28-year-old right-hander has made four spring appearances, allowing two runs while striking out five and walking none over five Cactus League innings. Petricka, who saved 14 games in 2014, is expected to be an important late-inning reliever for the White Sox this season. Along with Nate Jones, he could be a candidate for saves if the organization trades closer David Robertson as expected at some point in 2017.
Petricka agreed to a one-year, $825,000 deal with the White Sox on Thursday, avoiding arbitration, Chris Cotillo of The Daily Dish reports. The White Sox shored up their bullpen Thursday by re-signing Petricka and Dan Jennings to one-year deals. Petricka had an injury-shortened 2016, making just nine appearances before being shelved by a hip injury that required season-ending surgery. He had been durable prior to the hip injury, notching over 60 appearances in each of his previous two seasons. Petricka figures to be one of Chicago's most heavily used middle relievers in 2017 provided that he bounces back from the hip injury.
Petricka (hip) was activated from the 60-day disabled list Thursday. Petricka missed almost the entirety of the 2016 season with a hip injury, as he last pitched May 1. His upcoming return should help strengthen a subpar White Sox bullpen that had a collective ERA of 3.68 in 2016.
Petricka underwent season-ending hip surgery Friday. Petricka's 2016 season is officially over as he went under the knife Friday to repair an impingement in his hip. The 28-year old now faces a long road to recovery but should be fully healed by the time spring training rolls around next season.
Manager Robin Ventura said Petricka is still dealing with a sore hip and is not yet ready to return from the disabled list, the Chicago Tribune reports. Petricka could have come off the disabled list earlier in the week, but he will instead remain on the DL for an indeterminate amount of time. His absence has allowed Matt Purke to remain on the active roster.