Taking no chances, Sox put Humber on DL
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN email@example.com August 19, 2011 10:04PM
Juan Pierre lays down a bunt in the second inning that scored Brent Morel from third. Morel’s run gave the Sox a 3-0 advantage. | Jonathan Daniel~Getty Images
Updated: November 3, 2011 11:47AM
Philip Humber went on the disabled list Friday with a bruise on his forehead. The right-hander checked out fine Thursday night after getting smoked by a liner off the bat of Kosuke Fukudome, and he felt good Friday, but the Sox put him on the DL anyway.
“The decision was made because we have to protect this kid; besides, we are a little short in the bullpen,’’ manager Ozzie Guillen said. “But the main thing is protect him.’’
Zach Stewart will start Wednesday in Anaheim in Humber’s place and make another start. The time off could freshen up Humber’s arm, although he says there’s no need for that despite Guillen saying Thursday that his breaking pitches haven’t been as crisp through his recent 0-4 losing skid.
“I feel fine,’’ Humber (8-8, 3.63) said. “They said they didn’t want to take any chances.’’
Josh Kinney was called up from AAA Charlotte to bolster the bullpen with Stewart moving to the rotation. Kinney, 32, was 6-3 with a 2.77 in a team-high 49 appearances. He has 45 games of experience with the Cardinals.
With so much at stake for every game at this point in the season, general manager Ken Williams doesn’t want to risk being short an arm on his pitching staff.
“Every game is vital to us,’’ Williams said.
Endorsements for Hahn
Sox assistant general manager Rick Hahn, who interviewed for the Mets GM job last year, will receive a lofty letter of recommendation from Williams if the Cubs ask about him.
“I’ve made no secret about it. Rick Hahn is, to me, one of the most qualified men to assume the position moving forward,’’ Williams said. “What Mr. [Tom] Ricketts does is his own business. He’s a guy that’s had a lot of success in business and in his world, and his world over there is none of my business. But if he called for a recommendation on Rick Hahn, I absolutely would give him my highest.”
Guillen echoed those sentiments and agreed with Williams that he wouldn’t be nice enough to stick around for weeks after getting fired.
“Yeah, if [chairman] Jerry [Reinsdorf] fires me, I’m going golfing,’’ Williams said. “See you later. If you guys want to talk to me by phone, fine. But I’m out of here.”
Hahn declined to discuss the Cubs job.
Pat on the back for Dunn
Brent Lillibridge started at first base in Adam Dunn’s place against lefty Matt Harrison on Friday. Williams likes how Dunn has beaten the pull-shifts against him lately by poking a couple of singles to left field.
“He’s willing now to forego some of the power … as result, some of the soft stuff that they’ve thrown after that, he’s hit a couple balls hard to the right fielder,’’ Williams said. “So yeah, it’s a beginning point and a reason for optimism.’’
As for the notion that Dunn should revamp his offseason work, Williams isn’t buying it.
“I find it a little difficult to be that critical of a man who’s accomplished as much as he’s accomplished in his career,’’ Williams said.
“With six weeks of spring training, that’s seemingly enough to get it going. He just got into a bad rut and hasn’t been able to shake it.’’
The Sept. 4 game at Detroit has been added by ESPN2 and moved to 7:09 p.m. start.