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Chicago White Sox send Eloy Jimenez on rehab assignment

Mar 15, 2021; Glendale, Arizona, USA; Chicago White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez against the Chicago Cubs during a Spring Training game at Camelback Ranch Glendale. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez officially was sent out Friday on a rehab assignment at Single-A Winston-Salem, with his potential return to the major leagues in three weeks.

Jimenez, 24, has not played this season after he tore a left pectoral muscle while making a play in the outfield during spring training. He had surgery March 30, with a potential recovery time as much as five months.

Barring any setbacks, he could beat that original timetable by a full month.

“The team is winning, and I feel happy I will be back to help the team,” Jimenez said. “I feel better than I did in spring training. I feel 110 percent. Let’s say 200 percent. I feel normal. I can finish my swing with one hand, two hands, whatever. It’s not going to hurt.”

Fourth in voting for the American League Rookie of the Year award in 2019, Jimenez has batted .276 with an .848 OPS in 177 career major league games over the previous two seasons. He has 45 home runs with 120 RBIs.

The first-place White Sox have played well without Jimenez, taking a 51-35 record into Friday’s play. Chicago has a 7 1/2-game lead over the second-place Cleveland Indians in the AL Central.

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–Field Level Media