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Reliever Matt Lindstrom targets return in early August

Updated: August 29, 2014 1:09PM



MINNEAPOLIS — Help for the bullpen should be on the way soon. Right-hander Matt Lindstrom said he expects to be ready when the White Sox visit Seattle for a four-game series that starts Aug. 7.

Lindstrom, who opened the season as the closer before being sidelined by a torn sheath in his left ankle that required surgery, last pitched May 19. He is scheduled to pitch in a simulated game Tuesday in Detroit before going on a rehab assignment at Class AAA Charlotte.

‘‘I’m excited,’’ Lindstrom said Sunday.

Lindstrom said he still has some mild discomfort around the area that was repaired, but he said it doesn’t affect his throwing. He said he passed agility tests covering first base and fielding Saturday.

In 19 innings over 19 appearances, Lindstrom was 2-1 with a 3.32 ERA and six saves.

On Sale now

Left-hander Chris Sale woke up as the American League ERA leader among starting pitchers at 1.88. Only Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw (1.76) has a lower ERA among starters in the majors. Sale, 25,
has taken his game up a notch
this season.

‘‘He’s better in that he manages his pitches better. [He’s] a little more efficient, jumping ahead and throwing different things at different times,’’ said manager Robin Ventura, who added Sale’s use of fewer sliders and more changeups has been a plus and is probably good for his arm, too.

‘‘He manages getting ahead and controlling the inning but not having to max everything out on every pitch. That’s when you start growing, and you see these guys move from being a good pitcher to a great pitcher.’’

Asked what his plan would be against Sale, Ventura — who was a left-handed hitter — said: ‘‘It wouldn’t be good. The angle he creates on a lefty, survival is the first thought.’’

Stoney and Wimpy, continued

Broadcaster Ken Harrelson, who missed the weekend series against the Minnesota Twins while in Cooperstown for Hall of Fame festivities, will miss the series against the Tigers in Detroit to tend to a personal matter in Orlando, Florida. Tom Paciorek will continue to serve as the color analyst, while Steve Stone handles more play-by-play duty.

Paciorek, Harrelson’s partner from 1991 to 1999, no longer broadcasts for other teams and doesn’t care to.

‘‘The people [with the Sox] are the best to work for,’’ he said. ‘‘I can relax and be myself.’’

Paciorek lauded Stone’s play-by-play work.

‘‘I listen to a lot of broadcasters — a lot of them — and he’s better than a lot of them and as good as anybody,’’ Paciorek said.

Streak buster

Slugger Jose Abreu’s RBI double in the sixth inning extended his hitting streak to 17 games. Abreu, who was 2-for-3 to raise his average to .294, has hit safely in 35 of his last 36 games.

In Abreu’s only hitless game during that stretch, Leury Garcia pinch-ran for him with two outs in the ninth inning of a tie game
July 5 against the Mariners. Garcia got two more at-bats in extra innings, and the Sox went on to lose 3-2 in the 14th.

Email: dvanschouwen@suntimes.com

Twitter: @CST_soxvan



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