Sale on His Progress: “It’s Great to Be a Real Baseball Player Again”

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

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Today’s News

Getting There

Chris Sale ran yesterday for the first time since his foot injury, is set to throw a second bullpen tomorrow and is scheduled to throw 75 pitches on Friday in a simulated game. All of this planned activity prompted Chris’ upbeat comment above.

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Rockies at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable Sox Starter: LHP John Danks. Others scheduled are RHP Javy Guerra, LHP Dan Jennings, LHP Zach Duke, RHP Matt Albers, LHP Onelki Garcia.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Andy Wilkins doubled in three runs, Alexei Ramirez continued his hot hitting by driving in a run with a double, his 14th RBI of the spring (click on link below), and Conor Gillaspie went 2-3 with a single and a double in the Sox loss to the Padres in Peoria…Melky Cabrera made a terrific throw to double off a runner at first base.

http://m.mlb.com/sd/video/v52719183

Sox Moves

INF Leury Garcia, LHP Onelki Garcia and 1B Wilkins have been optioned to Class AAA Charlotte; RHP Frankie Montas has been optioned to Class AA Birmingham and RHP Logan Kensing, RHP Nolan Sanburn and LHP Joe Savery have been reassigned to minor-league camp.

Read All About It: The Abreu Profile in Chicago Mag

http://atmlb.com/1EJIRhU

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Quote of the Day

Robin on Sale:

“Today’s a good day just getting him back out with everybody on the field… just to get him back out’s good for his sake.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Royals at Surprise (8:05 p.m., CT). Probable Sox Starter: RHP Chris Beck.

Photo of the Day

Popular country music artist Luke Bryan, a buddy of Adam LaRoche, visited Sox camp yesterday. Bryan had time for this selfie and also took some BP with the great Bo Jackson looking over his shoulder.

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In Sox Camp “Q” Stands for Outstanding

Monday, March 23, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Padres at Peoria (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable Starters: LHP Jose

Quintana for the Sox, RHP Tyson Ross for San Diego. Other Sox scheduled to pitch: RHP David Robertson, RHP Frankie Montas, RHP Jake Petricka, RHP Daniel Webb, RHP Maikel Cleto.

Quintana will be looking to continue his outstanding performance this spring. He’s 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA.

Yesterday’s Highlights

J.B. Shuck (pictured below) singled, doubled, drove in a run and stole his fourth base of the spring. He is now hitting .394…Alexei Ramirez, also batting .394, added a single and double with an RBI and Courtney Hawkins, following up his two homers on Saturday, doubled and drove in a run in his only at bat in the Sox’ loss to the Brewers at Maryvale.

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A New Avi

http://chicago.suntimes.com/sports/7/71/461225/white-sox-outfielder-avisail-garcia-best-lay-bad-pitches

March Madness White Sox Style

On Saturday, Sox hurlers and North Carolina State products Carlos Rodon and Erik Surkamp were celebrating their alma mater’s impressive win over No. 1 seed Villanova in the East Regional to advance to the Sweet 16. And former Fighting Irish standout Jeff Samardzija was doing likewise after Notre Dame’s triumph over Butler in the Midwest Regional. Now it’s Conor Gillaspie‘s turn to gloat as his Wichita State Shockers upended No. 2 seed and intrastate rival Kansas yesterday to advance to the round of 16 in the Midwest. N.C. State squares off with Louisville on Friday in Syracuse while Jeff’s Irish will play Conor’s Shockers on Thursday in Cleveland.

Also in a very good mood is White Sox social media whiz Colleen Maxwell, whose Michigan State Spartans surprised No. 2 Virginia in the East. Sparty goes up against Oklahoma Friday in Syracuse.

Quotes of the Day

Alexei on hitting in the sixth hole:

“That’s part of the job that I’m doing right now. I’ve found my spot in the lineup. It’s a great responsibility and I can find men on base. I have to bring them home.”

And on this year’s Sox:

“We are like a family right now. We make jokes. We laugh. I think that it’s a good team we have here. I think that the front office found the pieces.”

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Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Rockies at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable Sox Starter: LHP John Danks. Others scheduled are RHP Javy Guerra, LHP Dan Jennings, LHP Zach Duke, RHP Matt Albers, LHP Onelki Garcia.

Photo of the Day

World Champion White Sox outfielder Aaron Rowand (on the far right) brought his Little League team to Glendale to see how it’s done on the major-league level. That’s Aaron’s son wearing his Dad’s No. 33.

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Sunday Roundup: Hawkins Sizzles, Two Special Kids, An Emotional Eaton and More…

Sunday, March 22, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Brewers at Maryvale (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable Starters: RHP Jeff Samardzija for the Sox, RHP Matt Garza for the Brewers. Other Sox scheduled to pitch: RHP Zach Putnam, LHP Dan Jennings, LHP Zach Duke, RHP Arcenio Leon.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Courtney Hawkins launched a one-out, two-run homer in the seventh inning, his third in Cactus League play, to tie the score at 4-4 and repeated the feat in the ninth to give the Sox a dramatic 6-4 come-from-behind win over the Royals at Camelback Ranch-Glendale…Jose Abreu continued his outstanding spring with his sixth RBI in 11 games–a fifth-inning sac fly…He’s now hitting .484 in CL action…J.B. Shuck singled and doubled and is now batting .367…David Robertson pitched a perfect sixth and Carlos Rodon, Javy Guerra and Daniel Webb followed with a scoreless inning apiece.

Enjoy Hawkins’ walkoff blast:

http://m.mlb.com/video/v51501983/?affiliateId=clubMEGAMENU

Robin on Hawkins

http://chicago.suntimes.com/sports/7/71/459882/hawkins-big-spring-white-sox-continues-tying-walk-homer

“Home Run For Life”

Before yesterday’s game, brothers Shaun and Malik Hamilton ran the bases and were greeted by players from both the Sox and Royals as part of “Home Run For Life,” a program that sponsors and works with children who have life-threatening illnesses (see photos below).

Shaun is currently battling severe Aplastic Anemia and is scheduled to undergo his second bone marrow transplant. Malik will once again be his hero donor.IMG_2498

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Sale’s Progress a Pleasant Surprise

http://chicago.suntimes.com/baseball/7/71/459479/chris-sale-pleasantly-surprised-progress

Hot Off the Presses

Jose Abreu is featured in the April issue of Chicago Magazine. It’s on newsstands now and online beginning tomorrow.

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Congrats to White Sox pitchers Rodon and Surkamp

You can’t blame proud North Carolina State products Rodon and Erik Surkamp if they are doing a little bit of celebrating today as their Wolfpack upset No. 1 seed Villanova last night to advance to the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Basketball Tournament.

Quote of the Day

Adam Eaton on signing his new contract:

“It almost brings a tear to my eye because I’ve been looked over my whole life. I say that I dreamed about it, but really I didn’t. When I was in high school, I dreamed about playing college baseball, Division II, Division III. When I was in college (Division I Miami of Ohio), I was just dreaming about putting on a professional uniform in Missoula, Montana. To sign a professional contract for five years in the big leagues, it’s absolutely crazy how far we’ve come.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Padres at Peoria (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable Starters: LHP Jose Quintana for the Sox, RHP Tyson Ross for San Diego. Other Sox scheduled to pitch: RHP David Robertson, RHP Frankie Montas, RHP Jake Petricka, RHP Daniel Webb, RHP Maikel Cleto.

Photo of the Day

The manager’s bracket picks.

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“Adam Serves as a Catalyst, Brings a Spark of Energy to the Ballpark Each and Every Day…”

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Royals at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Sox Probable Starter: RHP Brad Penny. Others scheduled to pitch are RHP David Robertson, LHP Carlos Rodon, RHP Javy Guerra and RHP Jake Petricka.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Avi Garcia had a pair of run-scoring singles, Adam LaRoche doubled in a run (click on link below), walked and scored, Alexei Ramirez knocked out three singles with an RBI and run scored, Jose Abreu singled twice, doubled and scored twice, Melky Cabrera collected two singles and scored and Micah Johnson had a couple of hits, a stolen base and an RBI in the Sox’ 10-7 loss to the Cubs yesterday at Camelback Ranch-Glendale…The South Siders pounded out 15 hits in defeat…Starter Hector Noesi now has a 2.89 spring ERA after allowing two runs and two hits in 4.1 innings.

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/cws/video/v50294683/?partnerId=as_mlb_20150320_42468126&adbid=579028614634590208&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

All About Eaton

The Sox have agreed to terms on a five-year, $23.5 million contract with Adam Eaton, which includes club options for 2020 and 2021.

Eaton batted .300 with 26 doubles, 10 triples, one home run, 35 RBI, 76 runs scored and 15 stolen bases in 2014, his first season in Chicago. He tied for the American League lead in triples, ranked third in average with runners in scoring position (.355), was 10th in average and 12th in on-base percentage (.362).

Quotes of the Day

GM Rick Hahn on the Eaton extension:

“Adam serves as a catalyst, brings a spark of energy to the ballpark each and every day and helps ignite our offense. He provided everything we look for in a leadoff hitter, a centerfielder and a competitor after joining us last season. We expect him to be an important part of this team’s success moving forward and we are very pleased we were able to reach this agreement to keep him in a White Sox uniform for potentially the next seven seasons.”

Hahn on Chris Sale‘s rehab:

“Sale had a really good day…He threw a live bullpen session today. He remains on track to not miss significant time.” 

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Brewers at Maryvale (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable Sox Starter: RHP Jeff Samardzija. Others scheduled to pitch: RHP Zach Putnam, LHP Dan Jennings, LHP Zach Duke, RHP Arcenio Leon.

Photo of the Day

Bo Jackson, who threw out yesterday’s ceremonial first pitch, and Robin Ventura relax after batting practice.

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It’s Sox vs. Cubs as the Regular Season Looms

Friday, March 20, 2015

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Today’s News

It Won’t Be Long Now

They’re hard at work in Chicago getting U.S. Cellular Field ready for the season ahead (see photo above)–evidence that it’s just around the corner. The Sox open up in Kansas City on Monday, April 6, with the home opener set for Friday, April 10 against the Twins.

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Cubs at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable starters: RHP Hector Noesi for the Sox, LHP Travis Wood for the North Siders.

Sox Starting Lineup: Adam Eaton CF, Melky Cabrera LF, Jose Abreu 1B, Adam LaRoche DH, Avisail Garcia RF, Alexei Ramirez SS, Conor Gillaspie 3B, Tyler Flowers C, Micah Johnson 2B.

Rowand and Eaton: Separated at Birth?

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/ct-white-sox-spring-training-spt-0320-20150319-story.html

Right on Q

Jose Quintana talks about his solid outing on the mound vs. the Reds this week and his first major-league hit.

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/cws/video/topic/8878818/v49163583

A Shark Bite

http://m.mlb.com/cws/video/topic/69972428/v49013283/?partnerId=as_cws_20150319_42356306&adbid=578570469831413761&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

A Shuck Tale

http://mlb.com/r/article?ymd=20150318&content_id=113324954&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Prospect Tim Anderson on the Spring Training Experience

http://m.mlb.com/video/v49671783

Sox Note of Note

Happy Birthday to White Sox GM Rick Hahn.

Quote of the Day

Sox prospect Courtney Hawkins tweeted this after slamming his second spring homer on Wednesday:

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Royals at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Sox Probable Starter: RHP Brad Penny.

Photo/Video of the Day

Here’s a sneak peek at the new Sox commercial spots.

http://m.mlb.com/video/v49483883/?partnerId=as_cws_20150320_42419166&adbid=578914214217003008&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

http://m.mlb.com/video/v48916483/?cid=cws

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/cws/video/v48912583/?affiliateId=clubMEGAMENU

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Sox Bats Explode vs. Reds; Cubs in Glendale Tomorrow

Thursday, March 19, 2015

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Today’s News

Yesterday’s Highlights

Gordon Beckham doubled twice, slammed a two-run homer (1) and drove in three runs, Courtney Hawkins continued his hot hitting with his second homer of the spring and Geovany Soto (1) added a round-tripper as the White Sox routed the Reds, 9-4, at Goodyear…Jose Quintana, now 2-0, lowered his earned run average to 1.59 as he allowed just one run on two hits and a walk along with three strikeouts in 4.2 innings. Making a couple of rare plate appearances because the DH wasn’t used in the National League park, Jose also had an RBI single…Alexei Ramirez, already among the Cactus League RBI leaders, added two more and now has 10.

Roster Moves

Third baseman Matt Davidson, C Adrian Nieto, SS Tyler Saladino, C Kevan Smith and OF Trayce Thompson were optioned to Class AAA Charlotte. RHPs Raul Fernandez and Michael Ynoa were optioned to Class AA Birmingham and 1B Dan Black, INF Andy LaRoche, RHP J.D. Martin, OF Jared Mitchell, SS Tim Anderson and RHP Tyler Danish were reassigned to minor-league camp

With the moves, the Sox have 51 players remaining in major-league camp: 30 pitchers, four catchers, 11 infielders and six outfielders.

Quote of the Day

GM Rick Hahn on two of the optioned players, Saladino and Thompson.

“We’re thrilled with both with where they’re at. We feel both could help us in Chicago should the need arise.”

Off-Day Today

On Friday, White Sox vs. Cubs at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable starters: RHP Hector Noesi for the Sox, LHP Travis Wood for the North Siders.

Photo of the Day

Soto is hitting .316 in Cactus League play.

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Sox Boast a Host of Hot Hitters

March 18, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Reds at Goodyear (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable starters: LHP Jose Quintana for the Sox, RHP Jason Marquis for Cincinnati.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Trayce Thompson tied the game at 5-5 with a two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning and that’s how the game ended between the Sox and Mariners at Camelback Ranch-Glendale…Adam LaRoche doubled in a run and J.B. Shuck and Avi Garcia each went 2-3 with a pair of singles…Starter Jeff Samardzija went four solid innings, allowing two runs, four hits and a walk with three strikeouts. Chris Beck pitched perfect ball in the seventh and eighth innings and Daniel Webb hurled a 1-2-3 ninth.

Big Sticks

Melky Cabrera (pictured above) has gone 5-7 with a single, walk, run scored and RBI in his last three games. He’s hitting .348 on the spring.

Jose Abreu is hitting .423 with a single, double, triple and five RBI in his last eight games. He has hit safely in eight of nine games played and has a six-game hit streak.

–Micah Johnson is hitting .444 with a .500 on-base percentage and is among the Cactus League leaders in hits (12) and runs scored (7) as well.

–Garcia, hitting .440, has two doubles and two RBI in eight games and has reached safely in all eight.

–LaRoche (8) and Alexei Ramirez (7) are among the CL RBI leaders.

–Courtney Hawkins, in 13 games, is hitting .400 with two doubles, a homer, five runs scored and four RBI.

Pen Power

http://mlb.com/r/article?ymd=20150317&content_id=113138634&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Gillaspie Looking to Start AND Finish Strong

http://mlb.com/r/article?ymd=20150316&content_id=112990922&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Meet Prospect Frankie Montas

http://mlb.com/r/article?ymd=20150315&content_id=112877278&vkey=news_cws&c_id=cws

Danish “Very Lucky” After Monday’s Scare

http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/chi-white-sox-tyler-danish-arm-20150317-story.html

Spanky Sighting

Former slick-fielding Sox first baseman Mike “Spanky” Squires was at CR-G yesterday scouting for the Reds. Here’s a fun fact: Squires referees high school basketball games during the winter in the Kalamazoo, Michigan area.

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Sox Note of Note

Taking another step in his rehab, Jesse Crain is scheduled to pitch in a minor-league game today.

Quote of the Day

Kenny Mayne of ESPN fame (second from left in photo below) visited with Robin and Coop yesterday. Mayne’s takeaway in a tweet:

Thanks @whitesox 

I felt a part of your team until the equipment manager made me give back jersey.

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Tomorrow’s Schedule

Off-day. On Friday, White Sox vs. Cubs at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT, CSN). Probable starters: RHP Hector Noesi for the Sox, LHP Travis Wood for the North Siders.

Photo of the Day

Thompson enjoyed a game-tying St. Patrick’s Day.

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Former Irish Star Samardzija is St. Patrick’s Day Starter (Who Else?)

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Mariners at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable starters: Jeff Samardzija for the Sox, RHP Hisashi Iwakuma for Seattle.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Tyler Saladino hit his first homer of spring, a solo shot, walked, stole a base and made some great plays in the field in the Sox’ 6-2 loss to the Diamondbacks at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale…Micah Johnson continued his outstanding offense with a single, a walk, an RBI and a stolen base. He’s now batting .458 on the spring…Javy Guerra pitched a perfect fourth inning in relief of Carlos Rodon, who settled down nicely after a rough start. Rodon went three innings, giving up a pair of runs while striking out three…Tyler Danish pitched two strong innings before being removed after being hit by a smash back to the mound. Preliminary report is that it’s a bruised right tricep.

The Surging Sox

http://grantland.com/the-triangle/mlb-2015-chicago-white-sox-rebuild-rick-hahn-chris-sale-jose-abreu/

Celeb Sighting

Former Bears quarterback Bobby Douglass was in Scottsdale yesterday taking in the Sox game.

Quote of the Day

Communications guru and lifelong White Sox fan Kevin Sullivan, in town to address Sox minor leaguers, on Hawkins’ terrific catch yesterday in left field.

“That was the greatest catch by a No. 86 in the history of baseball.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Reds at Goodyear (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable starters: LHP Jose Quintana for the Sox, RHP Jason Marquis for Cincinnati.

Photo of the Day

Saladino: Star of the Day.

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It’s Gillaspie (Wichita State) vs. M. Johnson (Indiana), Mitchell (LSU) vs. Rodon and Surkamp (N.C. State) as March Madness Begins

Monday, March 16, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Diamondbacks at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick (3:10 p.m., CT). Probable starters: LHP Carlos Rodon for the Sox, LHP Robbie Ray for Arizona.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Catcher Rob Brantly homered (click link below) and Alexei Ramirez (double), Melky Cabrera and Conor Gillaspie each drove in a run as the Sox defeated the Angels for the second straight day, 5-3…Logan Kensing got credit for the win, David Robertson pitched a scoreless inning and Zach Putnam struck out the side in the ninth to earn the save.

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/cws/video/v47209483/?partnerId=as_mlb_20150315_42128606&adbid=577243141494816768&adbpl=tw&adbpr=53197137

The Big Dance

Like so many other sports fans around the country, the White Sox will be watching closely as the NCAA tournament unfolds. And you can count on the Sox for their annual bracket frenzy.

While the players and staff all have their favorites, several players in camp are products of the participating schools. And in two cases, teams connected with five

Sox players will be facing each other, sure to prompt some good-natured razzing.

On Thursday in the East Region at Pittsburgh, Jared Mitchell‘s LSU Tigers go up against Rodon’s and Erik Surkamp‘s N.C. State Wolfpack. On Friday it will be Gillaspie’s Wichita State Shockers vs. Micah Johnson‘s Indiana Hoosiers in the Midwest Region at Omaha, Neb. As we know, Rodon had an outstanding college baseball career, good enough to be the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 MLB draft, and Surkamp was drafted in the sixth round. Gillaspie earned All-America honors on the diamond while Johnson was an All-Big Ten selection.

Take a look at all five back in their college days–Gillaspie and Johnson are pictured above and Mitchell, Rodon and Surkamp are shown below.

Here are some other players and staff in camp who will be rooting for their schools.

* Oklahoma State: Manager Robin Ventura

* Georgia: INF Gordon Beckham

* Purdue: INF Dan Black, RHP Scott Carroll

* Ohio State: OF J.B. Shuck

* Arkansas: 1B Andy Wilkins, RHP Nolan Sanburn

* Notre Dame: RHP Jeff Samardzija

* Kentucky: Assistant Athletic Trainer Brian Ball

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Quote of the Day

Adam Eaton, who spent a good amount of time on the disabled list last season, gives some advice to Micah about taking care of his body (via CST_soxvan):

“He’s more explosive than I am on the basepaths. I’m trying to instill in him the lessons I learned last year. Hopefully we can kind of be buddies in the cold tub together and make sure we maintain ourselves and police each other when we’re tired and don’t want to do that.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Mariners at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable starters: Samardzija for the Sox, RHP Hishashi Iwakuma for Seattle.

Photo of the Day

Here’s Eaton taking another step toward getting healthy.

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Adam’s Slam Worth the “Weight”

Sunday, March 15, 2015

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Today’s News

This Afternoon’s Game

White Sox vs. Angels at Camelback Ranch-Glendale (3:05 p.m., CT). Probable starters: LHP John Danks for the Sox, LHP Hector Santiago for LA.

Yesterday’s Highlights

Just hours before yesterday’s game vs. the Angels in Tempe, we posted a picture on the blog showing Adam LaRoche working out in the White Sox weight room. Well, it seems like his efforts there have paid off. In the fourth inning, Adam launched a grand slam (click on link below), his first homer of the spring, and added another RBI with a sac fly as the Sox went on to win, 7-6, on a 14-hit attack…LaRoche wasn’t the only standout against the Halos. Leadoff man Micah Johnson went 3-4 with three singles, drove in a run and scored twice. He’s now hitting .455 in Cactus League play…Melky Cabrera also knocked out three singles in three at bats and is now hitting .316…Tyler Saladino went 2-4 with a run scored and Courtney Hawkins doubled in a run. Hawkins continues to impress. He’s batting at a .450 clip…Starter Brad Penny got credit for the win. He went 3.2 IP, allowing a lone run…Matt Albers earned the save with a scoreless ninth that featured a pair of strikeouts. He now has a five-inning scoreless streak.

http://atmlb.com/1ElGKR8

Shark and Coop Getting it Together

http://www.sportsmanias.com/tweets/article/5504ac17f7ed2f353d000122

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Hawk Up Close and Personal

http://m.whitesox.mlb.com/news/2015/03/14/112748942/broadcaster-ken-harrelson-has-high-hopes-for-white-sox-in-2015

Quote of the Day

Chris Sale on his rehab from the foot injury and expected return to the rotation:

“I’ve never really gone through anything like this before, so I didn’t know what the timetable would be or was projected to be. I just show up every day and try to get it better.”

Tomorrow’s Schedule

White Sox vs. Diamondbacks at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick (3:10 p.m., CT). Probable starters: LHP Carlos Rodon for the Sox, LHP Robbie Ray for the Dbacks.

Photo of the Day

In honor of Scott Podsednik and the 10th anniversary of the 2005 World Champions, it’s 22 days to Opening Day.

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