ARLINGTON -- After throwing 30 pitches off the mound Friday, White Sox left-hander John Danks was able to come back and play catch on Saturday in his ongoing rehab for a left shoulder strain.
"It's about as good as expected," Danks said. "So it's a good thing I guess."
This slight overall improvement for Danks during his nine weeks since last taking the mound on May 19 against the Cubs at Wrigley Field has brought about a feeling of utter frustration for the veteran. But with just two months left in the season, time also has become a constraint.
If Danks and the White Sox decide that there's not enough time or enough improvement for him to help this season, then the focus quickly moves to 2013. That shift also could bring about surgery to fix his shoulder, as Danks acknowledged to MLB.com on Saturday.
"We have to start thinking about if it's looking like I can't help this year, which I'm not saying, there is a point where you have to start looking at the bigger picture and worrying about next year," Danks said. "We have to make a move. Something has got to happen to make it start feeling better.
"Obviously, I've said it before, I thought I would be back by now. It just hasn't progressed quite like we thought it would. I don't know if we are quite to the surgery part yet. Certainly there is a time where you got to do something.
"Trust me, it's no fun sitting here and if that's the best available option to get it fixed and be ready for Spring Training, then, you know, I'm all for it," Danks said. "No one wants to be cut on, but if what we are doing is not working, then you have to look at other options."
The new plan involving Danks is to reduce long toss and just focus on getting him ready to throw 60 feet, 6 inches and be able to pitch in games, hopefully by September. With strength an issue after his prolonged inactivity, Danks almost needs another Spring Training build-up that would include a number of Minor League rehab starts.
According to Danks, simulated games would also work if the Minor League season ran short. But what Danks wants to avoid is waiting too long and having some sort of potential procedure cut into a healthy start to the 2013 season.
"At this point, it's whatever will get me on the field," Danks said. "You hate to think of the worst-case scenarios but there definitely comes a point where we definitely have to start thinking about next year. If we don't start making some drastic improvement, we might have to do something.
"In a perfect world, we don't have to cross that bridge, but it is what it is. We are going on eight or nine weeks now and it hasn't gotten a ton better.
"Me being able to bounce back a little bit today might have helped," Danks said. "Definitely there is a point, whether it be mid-August or the first of September, whatever it is, where if I'm not doing a lot more, we might have to look into other options."
De Aza, Ramirez sit out after collision
ARLINGTON -- A seventh-inning collision between shortstop Alexei Ramirez and center fielder Alejandro De Aza on a Craig Gentry fly ball during Friday's 9-5 victory left both men on the White Sox bench for Saturday's contest.
Ramirez's sore left wrist felt good enough Friday where he stayed in the game and actually hit an important two-run homer in the ninth against Alexi Ogando. But it felt worse when he woke up, and after testing it in the batting cage Saturday, Eduardo Escobar was given the starting nod at shortstop.
De Aza could miss the rest of the Rangers series with a slight sprain of his left wrist, replaced Saturday by Texas native Jordan Danks. De Aza exited Friday's game after the collision, and manager Robin Ventura said that De Aza was unavailable Saturday.
"It still bothers me a little bit, but better," De Aza said. "We'll see today after treatment. We'll see how we are doing."
Ventura said there were no plans for X-rays to be taken on De Aza's wrist.
"They might do it, just as a precaution. But [White Sox head trainer] isn't worried about it or anything, other than some soreness," Ventura said. "It's almost like they were in a car wreck."
A.J. Pierzynski, the durable White Sox catcher who is on pace to record his 11th straight season with at least 1,000 innings caught, missed his fourth straight game with a mild right oblique strain. Both Pierzynski and Ramirez could have played defensively, and both are expected back Sunday.
Brewers GM hints at White Sox interest
ARLINGTON -- When asked by MLB.com on Friday about the White Sox reported interest in Zack Greinke, general manager Ken Williams responded via e-mail with a direct, "No comment." But Milwaukee general manager Doug Melvin shed some light Saturday on Williams' intense pursuit of this impact starting pitcher, who eventually was moved to the Angels.
"Kenny worked really hard at it," Melvin told reporters. "I probably received as many texts from him [as anyone else]. It just wasn't a match."
Williams also tried to involve a third team in order to facilitate the deal, with his Minor League system apparently not possessing the necessary prospects and Williams not wanting to break up the Major League roster for his first-place team.
"That gets complicated on that big a deal," said Melvin of involving a third team.
Sale may start Wednesday's road trip finale
ARLINGTON -- Chris Sale looks as if he will close out this six-game road trip for the White Sox on Wednesday afternoon at Target Field, meaning he will start on regular four days' rest between trips to the mound for the first time since June 22 against Milwaukee and June 27 at the Twins. That plan could change with the addition of Francisco Liriano from the Twins on Saturday night, with the left-hander probably facing his old team in Minneapolis.
But if Sale works Wednesday, the first-year starter who picked up win No. 12 on Friday doesn't seem worried about the adjusted rest period.
"I've got four days to get my work in and prepare myself for Wednesday," Sale said. "It's just a day earlier but it doesn't mean anything. It's normal actually. It should be fine."
Friday's 6 1/3-inning effort for Sale brought his season total to 124 innings pitched, leaving him 21 short of his career high set in 2009 between Florida Gulf Coast University and Cape Cod League action. He threw 136 2/3 innings in 2010, between college and joining the White Sox.
The team already has given Sale two extended breaks to manage his innings and there figures to be one more, although there is no set date. Liriano's arrival could mean a six-man rotation, which again would protect Sale's arm.
"I don't know how we're going to do it, but I'd like to give [Sale] a little extra [rest]," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "I'm not even considering skipping [him] or anything like that. You want [him] to be as healthy and strong as he can be. If he's healthy and comes in and says he doesn't feel right, then we'll do that."
"I'm kind of going just by whatever they got for me," said Sale, who has given up 10 runs on 13 hits in his last 13 1/3 innings. "It's something we haven't talked about recently or at all actually, but there will come a time for that and I'll just handle it when it gets there."
Third to first
Friday night's rally from three runs down by the White Sox marked their 23rd come-from-behind win of the season.
The White Sox are the only team in the Majors featuring five players -- Adam Dunn (31), Paul Konerko (17), A.J. Pierzynski (16), Alex Rios (16) and Dayan Viciedo (16) -- with 15 home runs or more. Kevin Youkilis has turned in multiple-walk games in three of his last four starts. With 13 pitchers on the roster, the White Sox figure to add a utility infielder who can play shortstop on Sunday even though Francisco Liriano won't join the White Sox until Monday in Minnesota.