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Adam Dunn not in starting lineup because of sprained ankle

Shane RobinsPaul Konerko

Shane Robinson, Paul Konerko

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Sox at Cardinals

The facts: 7:15, CSN, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.

The pitchers: Gavin Floyd (4-6, 5.38 ERA) vs. Jake Westbrook (4-6, 4.25).

Updated: July 15, 2012 3:36PM

ST. LOUIS — Slugger Adam Dunn paid a price for hitting his 21st home run Tuesday, rolling and slightly spraining his right ankle on the swing.

Dunn, who was scheduled to start in left field Wednesday against the St. Louis Cardinals, was a late scratch from the lineup, and he might not start Thursday, either.

Dunn didn’t move all that well down the line when he grounded into a double play as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning. He would need to be mobile enough to play left because there is no designated hitter in National League parks.

‘‘There was no way I could have got out there and been productive [Wednesday],’’ said Dunn, who will receive more treatment in hopes of playing Thursday.

‘‘It doesn’t look very good,’’ manager Robin Ventura said.

Floyd adjusts

Right-hander Gavin Floyd (4-6, 5.38 ERA) enters his start Thursday against the Cardinals with a 10.52 ERA in his last five starts. He said he felt great in his last start against the Houston Astros, even though he allowed four runs in six innings.

Without being specific, Floyd said a minor mechanical flaw was identified in his last side session.

‘‘I worked on something small, and it feels amazing,’’ Floyd said. ‘‘It’s something that was able to free me up, and I feel real good about it.’’

Iron Matt

Left-hander Matt Thornton’s 31st appearance Tuesday tied him with the Oakland Athletics’ Grant Balfour and the Tampa Bay Rays’ Joel Peralta for the American League lead. It’s a source of pride for the 35-year-old, who broke Bobby Thigpen’s Sox record of 425 appearances June 1.

‘‘It’s not like I’m not sore and beat up on a lot of days, but I’m able to get loose and perform,’’ Thornton said. ‘‘It’s what you prepare yourself in the offseason for, the grind of the season. I get here early and do a lot of stuff to prepare myself and maintain.’’

After a rocky stretch in mid-May, Thornton has allowed two earned runs in his last 14 appearances.

‘‘You have adjustments throughout the year, and small things can turn into big things,’’ said Thornton, who tweaked his front-arm action. ‘‘It made a big difference with my location and drive to the plate.

‘‘Sometimes when little things get out of whack, you have to go back to when you were having success and make the minor adjustments to keep them from becoming major problems.’’

Fukudome update

Outfielder Kosuke Fukudome (strained right oblique) said he feels ‘‘a lot better’’ and will amp up baseball activities in the next couple of days. A rehab assignment is on the horizon.

Fukudome expected more playing time when he signed with the Sox, but he hasn’t been able to nudge left fielder Dayan Viciedo, center fielder Alejandro De Aza or right fielder Alex Rios out of the lineup.

‘‘It is what it is,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s something I have to deal with.’’

Hawkins in fold

First-round draft pick Courtney Hawkins agreed to contract terms, a Sox source confirmed. Hawkins, a power-hitting high school outfielder from Corpus Christi, Texas, is expected to sign next week for the recommended slot bonus of $2.475 million.

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