MINNEAPOLIS -- White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen denies ever saying Brent Lillibridge strictly should be used as a platoon player. Guillen simply said Lillibridge has not succeeded in the past when the team has used him in an everyday role.
But Guillen readily admits the man who has saved at least three victories with his glove this year is a different player from the recent past.
"Can he show us he can play every day? Well, that will be nice," said Guillen of Lillibridge, hitting .273 with seven home runs. "If you can produce every day, I'll get you the shot. But, right now, we have to wait and see. We have a lot of season to go to see what happens."
Peavy open to working out of bullpen
MINNEAPOLIS -- Jake Peavy threw a short bullpen session on Tuesday at Target Field and gave the same positive assessment of his strained right groin as was revealed by a Monday MRI.
The fluid buildup in the injured area has subsided, and Peavy is set for a Thursday injury rehab start for Triple-A Charlotte, where he will work six innings or throw 90 pitches. Peavy then expects to be back with the White Sox around the middle of next week.
None of that news would be considered particularly surprising. It was Peavy's comments after throwing Tuesday's bullpen, focused on the right-hander's willingness to pitch out of the bullpen, which might have caught people a little off guard.
After all, Peavy has made 237 career appearances and all of them have been starts. But Peavy's main concern is the team, especially with five quality starters already in place for the White Sox.
"We're sitting here talking about me coming back," Peavy said. "And I'm telling [pitching coach Don Cooper] and these guys, 'I'll do whatever needs to be done. If I need to go to the bullpen to help out there, we got five starters doing their thing, and I certainly think I can be a leader in the rotation as well and be as good as these guys have been.'
"I'll do whatever it takes because there is no weak link right now on the team. I made that known to Coop and [manager] Ozzie [Guillen]. When I see [general manager] Kenny [Williams], I'll do whatever they think I can do to help the club in any way. I think they know that."
When sharing this sentiment with Cooper, Peavy was told it's something the White Sox will discuss. Guillen was surprised to hear Peavy even bring up the bullpen and mentioned that it's a decision to be made ultimately involving himself, Cooper and Williams.
"I know he's willing to help us, but I think the decision we are going to make will be the one better for the ballclub," Guillen said. "That's what he thinks, that's how he can be prepared. Now we can start a conversation and we can go talk to Kenny about it. My job is here. They will tell me if he's a starter or in the bullpen."
Peavy is earning $16 million in 2011, and he was acquired by Williams in no uncertain terms to be the front man at the head of a deep rotation. There also are concerns as to how Peavy would bounce back from game to game in a relief role.
Guillen hasn't ruled out going back to the six-man rotation, even with the four days off coming through the All-Star break, and he pointed out that Peavy might benefit from a little bullpen work before going back into the rotation. Peavy first has to show he's ready to be activated from the disabled list before any step forward is taken, a sentiment expressed by Williams to his manager during Tuesday's rain delay.
"I'm just letting them know my end of the deal," Peavy said. "Do I think I can pitch out of the bullpen? Absolutely. I think I can help. But I'm certainly not opposed to me being in the six-man rotation, either. We'll see what happens."
Santos' mental approach evolving
MINNEAPOLIS -- Before any issues are discussed about Sergio Santos' recent ninth-inning struggles, White Sox general manager Ken Williams wanted to heap praise upon the right-hander. Williams enjoyed Santos' determination closing out the A's on Sunday, even if he would have liked the ninth to be a bit cleaner.
"He told me of his conversation with [manager] Ozzie [Guillen]. When Ozzie came out to the mound, he thought he might take him out," Williams said. "[Santos] told Ozzie, 'Don't take me out. This is my game, win or lose. I want it.'
"That's what you want: That type of personality, where if he fails, he can come back the next day and succeed. So, while he's not the only guy we have who can close out games, I really like what he's showing."
Santos played a little catch on flat ground on Tuesday, trying to get a better feel for his slider, which has been absent during a 10-game stretch in which he has a 9.26 ERA and 11 walks over 11 2/3 innings. Guillen is more worried about fastball location and mound composure for Santos.
"I'm worried about how you prepare yourself to handle that situation," Guillen said. "The first two times he went through that situation, he was anxious. You have to be the opposite of anxious. Good pitchers come down and say, 'OK, I have to make my pitches from now on.' Then they're going to have success. His stuff is there."
"My job is to head out there with a clear mind and clear conscience," Santos said. "Be able to tell myself to calm down or relax in a situation where sometimes I'm trying to get 10 saves in one outing."
Third to first
Dayan Viciedo will be in Chicago for two days, finalizing work on his United States citizenship. Minor League right-handed hurler Gaby Hernandez was traded to Arizona for cash considerations. Southpaw Leyson Septimo was claimed off of waivers from the D-backs and optioned to Double-A Birmingham. Reliever Tony Pena will make his first rehab appearance on Thursday for Triple-A Charlotte. Pena has been sidelined by right elbow tendinitis.