Sox pitchers will get their chances to hit early this season
By TONI GINNETTI firstname.lastname@example.org April 5, 2013 11:34PM
Chicago White Sox center fielder Alejandro De Aza (30) hits a two run home-run against Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Blake Beavan (49) during bottom of the 5th inning, at U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago, on Friday, April 5, 2013. | Ting Shen~Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 7, 2013 6:16AM
The pitchers already are taking batting practice as the White Sox and every other American League team prepare to play interleague games throughout the season.
The Sox play next week in Washington against the Nationals, where there will be no DH.
‘‘[The pitchers] actually like it,’’ manager Robin Ventura said.
The new interleague format will revive the question of whether AL teams are at a disadvantage without it in National League parks —and whether the DH should be added to the NL.
‘‘For us, we’re built with it, so it’s hard to say,’’ Ventura said. ‘‘For some guys, it extends their careers.
‘‘I think [the DH] would help everyone in the American League [if adopted throughout baseball], but I don’t see it happening any time soon.’’
All the talk about the lack of small-ball scoring in the opening series against Kansas City might have been missing a point about pitching, first baseman Paul Konerko said.
‘‘I’d say everybody [on both sides] kind of tipped their hat to the pitching,’’ he said. ‘‘I think everybody threw the ball well. For the most part, their guys made good pitches, and our guys did, too. That can happen in any three-game stretch during the season. When it’s the first three games, it’s always magnified a little bit. We’ll be fine.’’
Left-hander John Danks will be evaluated on a start-by-start basis as he goes through extended spring training rehabbing his shoulder, pitching coach Don Cooper said.
‘‘Things are coming a little bit,’’ Cooper said. ‘‘But as far as how long and what it is, I don’t think anybody has the answer to that.’’
Ventura said staying in touch with him as he goes through the rehab is important mentally for Danks.
‘‘It’s not an easy situation for anyone,’’ Ventura said. ‘‘The DL is not a fun place to be for him trying to work his way back. He worked as hard as anyone to get ready to break [camp] with us at the beginning of the season [after last season’s surgery].
‘‘It just didn’t happen. He wasn’t back to what he was before, and that’s the hard part — to be able to stay focused in that rehab to make it all the way back.’’
Back in time
The Sox will pay tribute to the 1983 AL West Division champs each Sunday this season by wearing replica uniforms. This Sunday, Rudy Law and Julio Cruz will be honored at the game.