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Adam Eaton says he isn’t sprinting for fences

Updated: September 9, 2014 6:35AM

SEATTLE — Center fielder Adam Eaton felt better Thursday after crashing into the U.S. Cellular Field fence at full speed the day before. The White Sox leadoff man was held out of the starting lineup for the series opener against the Mariners at Safeco Field, but he hopes to return Friday.

“As soon as it happened, I was making sure all my body parts still worked, catching my breath,’’ said Eaton, who left with a sore lower back. “I was more in shock than anything.’’

On the long flight to Seattle on Wednesday night, trainer Herm Schneider made sure Eaton kept moving around and instructed Eaton’s wife to walk with him around Pike Place Market.

“I walked a couple of miles, felt good coming in today and told [manager Robin Ventura ] I could play, but it’s his decision and probably for the better,’’ said Eaton, who’s batting .424 in his last 23 games, raising his average 40 points to .305.

Eaton, who missed his 23rd game, has been playing with a broken middle finger on his right hand.

“We tape it every day and deal with it on an every-day basis,’’ he said.

Eaton’s style of play has come into question because it can lend itself to getting hurt.

“Yeah, but playing hard is what I do,’’ Eaton said. “I don’t think I run into walls. That wasn’t a very good judgment call. That wasn’t, ‘I’m going to hustle here; I’m going to do something crazy.’ That was just I thought I had more room than I did. It happened to be a really bad judgment call.’’

Putnam ready

Right-hander Zach Putnam (2.35 ERA) was with the team after pitching a rehab inning for Class AAA Charlotte and will be activated from the disabled list Friday.

“Champing at the bit,’’ Putnam said.

“The velocity was up a little bit, but, most important, the shoulder felt good.’’

Matt Lindstrom (left ankle) will probably come off the DL “within the next week,’’ Ventura said. Lindstrom’s movement and fielding actions are close to but not quite 100 percent, Ventura said, but he is getting hit hard during his rehab assignment at Charlotte. Against Pawtucket on Thursday, Lindstrom allowed four runs, four hits and two walks in two-thirds of an inning. He started pitching last week for the first time since May.

‘Rest’ for Abreu

Ventura plans to give Jose Abreu a rest of sorts by having him DH Saturday and Sunday before the day off Monday.

Abreu, who led the majors in homers with 31, is attempting to become the third Sox player (fourth time) to lead the American League in homers. Bill Melton led the league with 33 in 1971, and Dick Allen led with 37 and 32 in ’72 and ’74, respectively.

Rodon watch

No. 3 overall pick Carlos Rodon seems headed for a September in Chicago, but Ventura claimed not to know of any such plans for the lefty.

“We are concerned about what’s going on right here,’’ he said. “If they say he’s pitching well enough to come up, then the more the merrier at this point.’’

Rodon pitched three scoreless innings for Winston-Salem in his first high-A start.


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