Luis Robert of the White Sox hits a two-run home run against the Seattle Mariners in the fifth inning at T-Mobile Park on April 06, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) | Getty

Gold Glove center fielder will start rehab at High-A Winston Salem Wednesday

White Sox center fielder Luis Robert has been cleared to begin a rehab assignment, and will be on the field at High-A Winston-Salem Wednesday as he comes back from a Grade 3 right hip flexor strain.

“I’m excited for the process to begin,” Robert said through translator Billy Russo.

Robert suffered the injury on May 4 running out a ground ball.

“I was afraid of not coming back this season,” he said Monday.

The Sox made the announcement after losing to the Twins 3-2 in eight innings in the first game of a doubleheader Monday at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Robert’s recovery has been quicker than Robert expected, and the same can be said for left fielder Eloy Jimenez, who is coming back from a torn left pectoral muscle suffered during spring training. Jimenez was 8-for-27 with two homers and a double through his first seven rehab games at High-A Winston-Salem and Triple-A Charlotte, and should be in a Sox uniform before Robert.

If he uses the maximum 20 days allowed on an injury rehab, Jimenez would return the last weekend of the July when the Sox host the Indians, although returning when the Sox are in Kansas City leading to that series might not be out of the question.

“It’s all positive,” La Russa said of the reports on Jimenez. “There’s expected timing thing, whether it’s at the plate or reading balls, but physically they’re being very careful, smart with him. It’s all good.”

The Sox built an eight-game lead in the AL Central despite injuries to Jimenez, Robert, Nick Madrigal, Yasmani Grandal and more. Getting Jimenez and Robert back by August would obviously give them a big boost for the home stretch and into the postseason. Jimenez won a Silver Slugger award last season and Robert won a Gold Glove while finishing second in AL Rookie of the Year voting.

“We’re serious about getting that ring,” Robert said. “That is motivation for all of us.”

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