Robin Ventura likes what he sees in Orlando Hudson
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN firstname.lastname@example.org May 30, 2012 11:10PM
Chicago White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez (10) celebrates with teammate Dayan Viciedo (24) after Ramirez caught a ninth inning pop out by Tampa Bay Rays' Luke Scott to end a baseball game, Wednesday, May 30, 2012, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The White Sox won the game 4-3 to sweep the Rays in the three game series. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Updated: July 6, 2012 9:29AM
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Brent Morel began a rehab stint at Class AAA Charlotte on Wednesday night. When he returns, his job might not be waiting for him.
Manager Robin Ventura likes what he sees in 34-year-old Orlando Hudson despite his .208 average since joining the White Sox after getting released by the Padres.
“It’s tough, Orlando is playing well,’’ Ventura said. “He’s had a little infusion into the lineup. Part of it is his personality and part the way he plays.’’
Morel was batting .177 when he went on the disabled list with a problem in his lower back.
“We’ll get him in there as soon as he comes back to see what we got,’’ Ventura said.
“Yeah, those are always tough. You don’t like guys losing a job from an injury. For me, a lot of what was happening to Brent was because of his back. Want to see where he’s at.’’
Ventura said Morel must be at full tilt and not “sucking it up” before he gets on the field. Meanwhile, Hudson seems capable of handing a position he hadn’t played before coming to the Sox. He made a barehand, charging play to retire Elliot Johnson on Wednesday, but he doesn’t feel like he’s arrived.
“I may be trying to put too much pressure on myself, being the new guy,’’ said Hudson, a four time Gold Glove winner at second base. “I don’t want to make mistakes over there at the new position. I’m trying to be too perfect at everything. But, I’m only human. Long way to go, man.’’
Left-hander John Danks, on the DL with a left shoulder strain, played catch up to distances of 120 feet Wednesday and remains on track to pitch against the Blue Jays on Tuesday at U.S. Cellular Field.
“I hope so,’’ Ventura said. “He feels better every time he goes out there doing light tossing. Everything he’s said and [trainer] Herm [Schneider] said, he’s on the right track.’’
Danks, who will throw bullpen sessions Friday and Sunday, said he’s not 100 percent but “much better” than a week ago when he went on the DL.
Alejandro De Aza, who left the game after an errant pickoff throw struck his right knee, said he is OK and will play Friday.
◆ Dayan Viciedo was 3-for-4 and is 16-for-29 (.552) with four homers and 13 RBI over a seven-game hitting streak.
◆ Paul Konerko (.381) finally cooled off, going 2-for-13 in the Rays series.
◆ Matt Thornton tied Bobby Thigpen with a franchise-high 424th relief appearance. Thornton (2.86) has nine consecutive scoreless appearances.
◆ Nate Jones (3-0) gave up a two-run homer to Luke Scott but received an official scorer’s win after starter Jose Quintana was ejected in the fourth inning.
◆ Addison Reed (sixth save in six opportunities) has allowed three hits in 33 innings on the road.
◆ The Sox had a 15-game homer streak snapped.
◆ Adam Dunn struck out four times, raising his AL-leading total to 82.