CHICAGO -- Any White Sox maneuvers leading up to the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline could focus on bringing in another right-handed reliever. Sergio Santos has established himself as a talented and gutsy closer, while Jesse Crain certainly has done the job in a right-handed setup role.
But manager Ozzie Guillen doesn't want to burn out the two pitchers before September crunch time. Picking up an extra quality arm could be a necessity, unless Brian Bruney can pick up where he left off on Saturday, when he pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings.
Bruney has been scored upon during just two of his 10 appearances this season, including a two-run home run hit by Washington's Mike Morse on Friday. He feels comfortable with the White Sox, and the White Sox seem to feel comfortable using him in pressure situations.
"From what I've seen so far, the coaches do a really good job of putting guys in the situation where they can succeed," Bruney said. "Whether that's a righty coming in to face righties or lefty to face lefties.
"It's a little early to talk about finding a home, but I do enjoy it here and hopefully they like what I can do."
Right-handed reliever Tony Pena, who is working on a one-year, $1.6 million deal for 2011, currently is on a Minor League rehab assignment for elbow tendinitis covering four appearances for Triple-A Charlotte. But he felt tightness in his arm after leaving Friday's outing.
No arm issues exist for Bruney.
"This is the first year my arm never gets sore," Bruney said. "So, the weight training that [director of conditioning Allen Thomas] does and the strength program I think really works well for relievers most of all.
"For me, it works really well. I feel fresh every day. You just gotta do the thing to prepare for the next day, because I think one thing I've kind of tried to do this year is just focus on that day rather than what I've done or what's about to be done."
Peavy remains in line for Thursday's start
CHICAGO -- Even after throwing 55 pitches on two days' rest in his Major League debut as a reliever on Saturday, Jake Peavy appears set for his regular turn in the rotation on Thursday afternoon at Colorado.
"He's going to go in his spot," said White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen. "He talked to us this morning and said he wanted to pitch that day, he's ready to pitch that day. When the pitcher says he wants it and doesn't want to change anything, I'm going to give it to him."
John Danks' trip to the disabled list on Sunday with a strained right oblique reduces the White Sox six-man rotation to five. But that change still wouldn't stop the White Sox from being able to give Peavy an extra day or even two.
Edwin Jackson, who tentatively is scheduled to start the series opener at Wrigley Field on Friday, still would be pitching on an extra day's rest on Thursday against the Rockies. Philip Humber, Sunday's starter against the Nationals, could come back on Friday on the North Side working on regular rest.
- 131 wins
- 121 wins
"I'll tell you what, any time he's on the mound, whether he started the game or came on in relief, we know we have a good chance to get outs," said Danks of Peavy. "He proved that again yesterday. He's an ace-type pitcher for a reason."
"I was surprised to see him go that long," said White Sox reliever Brian Bruney, who pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings before Peavy. "I was thinking maybe a couple of innings, because we still had a couple of guys who could be used. In a game like that, a 1-0 game, you could use everything he can give you. You never know if that one will go 14 [innings] as well."
Dunn hits century mark in strikeouts
CHICAGO -- Adam Dunn reached the dubious distinction of recording an American League-high 100 strikeouts in just 67 games by virtue of three swinging and one looking during the White Sox 2-1 loss to the Nationals on Sunday.
Dunn is hitting .173 overall and just .126 (14-for-111) at home. His eighth-inning strikeout against southpaw Sean Burnett left Dunn 1-for-53 against lefties.
Manager Ozzie Guillen and his staff, as well as general manager Ken Williams, talked to Dunn before Sunday's game and expressed their support. Guillen also recounted all the extra hitting and work Dunn has put in to correct the problems. Ultimately, Dunn simply has to break out of this on his own.
"If he wants to play 15 years ... to have a few bad months is such a blip on the radar screen," White Sox captain Paul Konerko said. "It's [tough] when you're going through it, but you just got to think big picture. Once you get over that hump and get by it, you're a better player for it, and better hitter and everything will be better for it."
Guillen said Dunn won't start on Tuesday in Colorado but will play over the next six Interleague games in National League ballparks.
"He has to be in the lineup," Guillen said. "We have to get him going."
Hard-working Thornton bounces back quickly
CHICAGO -- White Sox left-hander Matt Thornton needed just the one day to bounce back after throwing 50 pitches in relief on Friday night, saying he was ready to go in Sunday's series finale against the Nationals.
"Yeah, I'm doing all right," Thornton said. "I could tell when I woke up everything had kind of subsided a little bit. You don't feel great, but there aren't too many times as a reliever you do feel great.
"It's one of those things where [if] you get too much time off, you get sore. You throw too much and you just get beat up. I'm feeling pretty good."
Thornton took the loss in Friday's 14-inning setback to the Nationals, giving up four unearned runs, started by an Alexei Ramirez throwing error with two outs. Ramirez apologized to Thornton, just as Juan Pierre had done earlier in the season when his dropped fly ball in left cost Thornton a save against Oakland. But, once again, Thornton said the apology wasn't necessary.
"I can't recall Alexei making an error in the last month and a half, and he's made unbelievable plays for me over the last four years," Thornton said. "People are going to make errors."