Sox and Team USA Battle to 4-4 Tie as Paulie has Quite a Birthday

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Today’s News

It’s a Draw

The White Sox and Team USA played to a 4-4 tie this afternoon with the game called after nine innings. The Sox pounded out 13 hits. Paul Konerko and Gordon Beckham each collected three singles and an RBI, Alexei Ramirez singled twice with a run batted in, Dewayne Wise doubled and singled and Conor Gillaspie doubled and drove in a run.

Pitching-wise, Gavin Floyd, in his first spring start, went 2 2/3 scoreless innings giving up a pair of hits and a walk with three strikeouts. Hector Santiago (1 1/3), Matt Thornton (1.0), Nate Jones (1.0) and Dylan Axelrod (1.0) were also unscored upon.

The Morning After

In the category of “that’s what I wanted to hear”: John Danks, who looked good in his first Cactus League appearance yesterday, felt normal soreness today but otherwise felt fine.

#MAKEANIMPACT

The Sox’s 2013 #MAKEANIMPACT campaign began today. Here are behind-the scenes photos from the TV commercial that debuts tonight during the Blackhawks game on Comcast SportsNet and a look at how the campaign launched in the Trib and Sun-Times.

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Sox Moves

Before today’s game vs. Team USA, the Sox made the following six roster moves:

* Optioned LHP Charlie Leesman to Class AAA Charlotte.
* Reassigned C Michael Blanke, RHP Jacob Petricka, INF Tyler Saladino, C Kevan Smith and INF Andy Wilkins to minor-league camp.

With the moves, the White Sox have 55 players remaining in major-league camp: 28 pitchers, four catchers, 13 infielders and 10 outfielders.

World’s Best Bullpen Session

This morning, I had the chance to watch closer Addison Reed throw his bullpen session in front of pitching coach Don Cooper and bullpen coach Bobby Thigpen (pictured below).

Reed, to say the least, was dealing.

“Best ever?” Coop asked Reed when he was done.

Reed tossed his glove to the ground in triumph.

“Best bullpen of my life!”

No joke: Reed ended his session by having catcher Adam Ricks cover his eyes with his right hand. Reed then threw a 95-mph strike right to Ricks’ glove hand (thankfully, for Ricks). It was stunning to watch.

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Quote of the Day

There’s in shape and then there is the sculpted physique of OF Jared Mitchell.

White Sox executive vice president Ken Williams walked past a shirtless Mitchell in the training room and wisecracked: “Next year, come to spring training in shape!”

Play of the Day

White Sox minor league pitcher Matt Zaleski, who pitched for both Class AA Birmingham and AAA Charlotte in 2012, was one of a group of Sox players who were “borrowed” by Team USA for today’s game. Little did Zaleski know when he showed up to camp this morning that he would be playing with the USA team and throwing to none other than All-Star catcher Joe Mauer.

Zaleski couldn’t have done better. He faced one batter and induced Hector Gimenez to ground into a double play to end the fifth inning.

As he entered the game, the press box phone rang. “Who is this guy?” a member of the Sox video crew asked.

“Zaleski,” was the reply.

“Oh, our guy.” Click.

Tomorrow’s Schedule

It’s an off-day for the White Sox. On Thursday, the Sox travel to Mesa to meet the Cubs (2:05 p.m. Chicago Time). Jose Quintana, who was so impressive in his first appearance this spring, will be the Sox starter vs. the Cubs’ Carlos Villanueva.

Did You Know…

…that Robin is the only manager in major league history who has won an Olympic Gold Medal in baseball? He batted .409 to help Team USA emerge victorious in 1988 at Seoul, Korea.

Happy Birthday to You

Wished Paul Konerko a Happy Birthday this morning (No. 37 for the Captain if anyone is counting) and got a smile and a fist bump in return. And how is Paulie going to celebrate his birthday? Big plans. He is heading to a North Scottsdale Little League game to watch his sons. Sounds like any father’s idea of a perfect birthday.

Photo of the Day

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PK celebrates his birthday with a 3 for 3 day–three singles, an RBI and a run scored.

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