Liam Hendriks

Liam Hendriks calls option pick-up ‘a longshot' with White Sox

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Chicago White Sox closer Liam Hendriks will likely miss most, if not all, of the 2024 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, but he’s expressing hope that he’ll return to the South Side.

Hendriks, who underwent surgery in early August, has a mutual option on his contract for next season, and he’s hoping against hope that the White Sox will pick that option up despite his uncertain status for the coming year.

In an interview for the “White Sox Talk” podcast with NBC Sports Chicago’s Chuck Garfien, Hendriks discussed the mutual option on his contract for the 2024 season, but admitted it was a longshot with his ongoing recovery from surgery.

“I’m hoping they pick it up. I mean, it’s a longshot, but look, it is what it is, and I hope to be here,” he said.

Hendriks detailed the option with the White Sox, saying that he’ll be paid the money regardless of whether he pitches for the team in 2024 or not. If the White Sox opt to pick up the option, Hendriks would be paid the $15 million for the 2024 campaign, but if the team opts not to, then the $15 million would be paid out over 10 years.

Either way, Hendriks said that he wants to be part of the White Sox organization moving forward.

“Either way, I get paid, but I want to be part of this organization,” he said. “I’ve made that very clear from day one. It’s not my decision, it’s up to them. The ball is in their court, and I’d love to figure something out.”

Hendriks said that paying an injured reliever isn’t generally on the to-do list of a general manager, but that he feels confident that he could be useful for the White Sox whether on the mound or not.

“Even when I’m not playing, I can be a positive influence on some of these guys,” he said.

Hendriks has had an interesting 2023 season, missing the first two months of the season while undergoing treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Later in the year, Hendriks was diagnosed with a torn UCL in his pitching elbow, and underwent Tommy John surgery on Aug. 2. The surgery not only knocked him out for the remainder of 2023, but could also cost him the entire 2024 season as well.

In five total appearances with the White Sox, Hendriks appeared in five games, with a 5.40 ERA in five innings of work.

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