Chicago White Sox pitcher Liam Hendricks returns to MLB after beating cancer
Nearly six months after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma cancer, Liam Hendricks will return with the Chicago White Sox tonight.
Within the bad season that the Chicago White Sox are having, some good news is always welcome to help turn the losing narrative around.
Tonight, when the White Sox welcome Shohei Ohtani and the rest of the Los Angeles Angels to the Windy City, it will do so in company of a player who had to be away for some time to fight an illness.
Closer Liam Hendriks has been activated by the White Sox effective Monday after battling a serious form of cancer for half a year.
The pitcher used his social networks to publicize his return to the big top after beating non-Hodgkin lymphoma cancer.
The White Sox welcomed the moment with a montage showing Hendriks' teammates and coaches welcoming him to the club.
“We’re going to make sure that his return is, he’s ready to play, to be the Liam Hendriks that we all want him to be and that he wants him to be,” manager Pedro Grifol said.
The pitcher completed his chemotherapy on April 5 and reported that he was officially in remission two weeks later.
The team sent Hendricks two weeks later on rehab assignment and then began some mock outings and branch games.
The34-year-old Aussie pitcher performed bullpen sessions during Spring Training when he felt healthy enough to do so, completed a six-game rehab season with Triple-A Charlotte and, most recently, he completed three live batting practice sessions with the White Sox.
Hendriks posted a message Sunday “See you soon on the South Side,” which could be a nod to his impending return from the disabled list. Hendriks hasn't pitched in 2023 after undergoing treatment out of season for non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Hendriks’ return will be welcome news for a team that is currently 22-33 and fourth in the AL Central. Chicago’s bullpen currently has the fifth-highest ERA in the MLB with 4.87.
Chicago has allowed three or fewer runs in six straight home games, going 5-1 in that stretch.
The Angels were shutouts in two of their four road games against the White Sox last season. It was the first time Chicago had shutout the Angels in multiple home games in a single season since doing so in four from nine home games in 1967.
Who is Liam Hendricks?
Hendriks signed a three-year, $54 million deal with the White Sox before the 2021 season and made the All-Star team in each of the past two seasons, recording 75 saves and a 2.66 ERA.
Liam was born in Australia and made his MLB debut on September 6, 2011.
He has played for the Minnesota, Toronto, Kansas City, Oakland, and Chicago White Sox.