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Jake Peavy not too sure about Monday’s start

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The facts: 6:10 p.m., Ch. 9, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.

The starters: Dylan Axelrod (0-1, 3.95 ERA) vs. Jeremy Guthrie (3-0, 3.06).

Updated: June 5, 2013 6:16AM



KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Friday’s rainout, the third of the season for the White Sox, cost them a valued day off, but it came at a good time for the starting rotation.

Saturday’s starting pitcher was a TBA because Jake Peavy’s sore back moved Hector Santiago up a day, so the Sox would’ve had to dip into their bullpen to pull out Deunte Heath and others on Saturday. But pushing things back a day keeps the starters in line.

Peavy is tentatively scheduled to pitch Monday, although he wasn’t overly enthusiastic about the possibility despite saying his back felt better a day after his scheduled start in Texas was scratched Thursday.

“Still there,’’ Peavy said. “It’s not completely gone, but I did make a whole lot of progress in a 24-hour period.”

Peavy received treatment and had a massage therapist work him over Friday. He said he hopes to be ready Monday.

“I would hope that it would be a possibility, pitching in this series,’’ he said.

Pitching assignments aside, manager Robin Ventura said the team would’ve rather played.

“These don’t count as off days, so I think guys would rather play,’’ he said.

Dylan Axelrod starts Saturday against Jeremy Guthrie, and Jose Quintana goes against Wade Davis on Sunday.

Efficient Santiago

Santiago improved to 3-0 with a 1.82 ERA over the five starts in his two-year career with 51/3 innings of one-run pitching Thursday against the Rangers. It was the left-hander’s first start this season.

“Hector has been throwing more strikes,’’ pitching coach Don Cooper said. “He’s been more efficient.’’

Santiago struck out six and walked two. His strikeouts-per-nine-innings ratio is 11.7 as a starter compared to 8.4 in relief. Catcher Tyler Flowers said Santiago seems to pitch better when he doesn’t overthink and simply gets the ball back and tries to execute a pitch.

“Hector can pitch,’’ Cooper said. “He’s got the pitches, and it’s all about focus . . . and if all you have to focus on is the glove and bring the fastball, curve, slider, change, screwball to it, that simplifies it for the pitchers. Go make pitches. Some guys can get a little bit wrapped up in the verbiage and the plan. We’ve got the plan. Your job is to execute it, and he’s been doing it. Hector is a valuable guy, and his time is coming and it’s been coming. He was a big part last year, and he’s a big part so far this year.”

Santiago’s next start is Wednesday against the Mets in New York. A New Jersey native, he grew up rooting for the Mets.

This and that

Axelrod owns a 3.00 ERA in his last three starts, all no-decisions. Sox starters own a 2.81 ERA over the last 14 games.

◆ The Sox are 6-12 at Kauffman Stadium since 2011.

◆ Anticipating upcoming interleague games against the Mets in New York, Sox pitchers hit indoors Friday.



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