Rienzo not only gave up seven runs on nine hits over 3 2/3 innings in a defeat to the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday, he has also run into trouble in each of his past three outings after opening the season with a 4-0 record.
On May 25, Rienzo gave up five runs over fine innings against the New York Yankees, but three of those runs were unearned. On May 31 against the San Diego Padres, Rienzo ran into command issues and lasted just 3 1/3 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits while throwing 80 pitches.
The White Sox don’t necessarily have a starter in the minor leagues banging on the door to get into the major league rotation, but Scott Carroll appears to have made some adjustments that are helping him to success as a long man out of the bullpen.
Carroll has pitched at least three innings in his past three relief appearances, giving up a combined two runs. He came on for Rienzo in the fourth inning Saturday against the Angels and over 4 1/3 innings he gave up just two hits, one of them a home run from Albert Pujols.
But getting into the habit of flip-flopping his starters isn’t an avenue Ventura cares to explore at present.
“You think of everything, but I'd like to see [Rienzo] get back to where he was a few starts ago, being aggressive, being more in control and things like that,” Ventura said. “When he's like that and has a curveball, he's a pretty good pitcher.”
Rienzo’s next opportunity is scheduled to come Wednesday opposite Tigers left-hander Drew Smyly.