White Sox morning roundup

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White Sox morning roundup

From the weekend:

The White Sox won three straight, defeating Arizona on Friday, Milwaukee on Saturday and San Francisco on Sunday. Important notes to glean from the games: Philip Humber looked good, A.J. Pierzynski hit an inside-the-park homer and Chris Sale continued to be a work in progress as a starter. The Sox also played a split-squad game Friday, with Dylan Axelrod struggling against the Dodgers.

Hector Santiago joined the closer mix and nailed down the save in Sunday's game. The screwballing lefty has been fantastic this spring, striking out nine -- although the safest bet still appears to be on Matt Thornton landing the role out of spring training.

Jesse Crain, who was considered a candidate for the closer job when spring training began, threw a successful 35-pitch bullpen session over the weekend. He's still working his way back from an oblique injury suffered earlier this month.

The Sox pulled of a pair of minor deals, acquiring outfielder Greg Golson from Kansas City and trading minor league infielder Greg Paiml to Atlanta. Golson will head to Triple-A Charlotte and, as Larry writes, was acquired to fill the hole left by the season-ending injury to Brandon Short.

Dayan Viciedo's spring OPS dipped to .288 -- he has just four hits in 40 at-bats with two walks and 14 strikeouts -- and part of that rough line could be the product of his defensive lack of comfort.

Jared Mitchell finally took a walk over the weekend, but he's still struck out nine times in 24 at-bats. On Friday, Buddy Bell said the Sox wanted Mitchell to be aggressive at the plate, but not to the level he's taken it this March.

And finally from the Sox, Chris Kamka has a nice read on left-handed Opening Day starters in Chicago baseball history. Spoiler alert: the Sox have the majority of them, between Mark Buehrle, Wilbur Wood and Billy Pierce. Only one righty has started Opening Day for the White Sox since the turn of the millennium, with that being Jose Contreras in 2007.

Around the division: Kansas City made the curious decision to go with Chris Getz and Yuniesky Betancourt at second base over Johnny Giovatella, Miguel Cabrera will likely be ready for Opening Day, Chris Perez is progressing nicely for Cleveland and Justin Morneau's pair of homers against Tampa Bay were an encouraging sign.

White Sox can't score for Jose Quintana, fall 1-0 to lose seventh straight

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White Sox can't score for Jose Quintana, fall 1-0 to lose seventh straight

NEW YORK -- The White Sox played for a run late in Monday’s contest and the strategy backfired.

Looking to break a scoreless tie, the White Sox called for a bunt with No. 3 hitter Melky Cabrera at bat with two on and none out. Cabrera executed the bunt perfectly, but surrendering the extra out proved costly as the White Sox couldn’t come through against New York Mets starter Matt Harvey.

Half an inning later, Neil Walker homered off Jose Quintana and the Mets sent the White Sox to their seventh straight loss with a 1-0 defeat in front of 38,339 at Citi Field. Quintana lost for the fifth time in 10 decisions despite limiting New York to a run and six hits in seven innings. The White Sox have lost 15 of 19 and are now just two games above the .500 mark.

Three years after he dominated the White Sox at Citi Field, Harvey played the same note once again. But unlike the 2013 season when Harvey, who at the time was the hottest pitcher on the planet, one-hit the White Sox, he entered Monday with a number of questions surrounding whether or not he belonged in the majors.

Yet at no time over the first six innings did Harvey resemble a pitcher carrying a 6.08 ERA. He retired the first 13 men he faced until J.B. Shuck singled with one out in the fifth. Harvey was efficient and throwing hard, striking out six through six innings and walking none.

But the White Sox finally got Harvey on the ropes in the seventh when Adam Eaton drew an eight-pitch walk to start the inning. Jose Abreu followed with a seeing-eye single to left to bring up Cabrera.

Cabrera squared to bunt on the first pitch and took a ball. He bunted again on a 1-1 offering, which moved the runners into scoring position. But the play also took the bat out of Cabrera’s hands. Harvey then retired Todd Frazier on a foul pop out to first base and Shuck grounded out to end the threat.

After Walker’s homer off Quintana gave New York the lead, Mets relievers Addison Reed and Jeurys Familia set down the final six men in order.

Quintana made it clear early on he was up to the challenge against Harvey. With his team in need of another big start, Quintana had it going early, striking out the side in the second inning and four straight batters.

He pitched out of a fourth-inning jam with a double play and limited the Mets’ chances until the seventh. Even after the Walker homer, Quintana pitched out of another jam, stranding two to keep the White Sox within striking distance.

He walked two and struck out seven.

J.B. Shuck: White Sox prospect Tim Anderson doesn't 'get rattled by anything'

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J.B. Shuck: White Sox prospect Tim Anderson doesn't 'get rattled by anything'

NEW YORK — J.B. Shuck is very impressed with the play of White Sox prospect Tim Anderson.

Recalled Monday from Triple-A Charlotte, Shuck said he thinks Anderson could handle a promotion to the big leagues if the White Sox were to make the call.

At Charlotte for almost six weeks, Shuck had plenty of time to watch the young shortstop play. He thinks Anderson, who is hitting .305/.332/.397 with 11 extra-base hits and 10 steals in 209 plate appearances, wouldn’t scare were he to go in a slump.

“He could come up and do well,” Shuck said. “He has that personality where he’s not going to get rattled by anything. I think he’ll do well when he gets his chance.”

The team’s top position player prospect, Anderson has been torrid since he started the season 9-for-53 with an RBI, 16 strikeouts and no walks. Shuck likes how Anderson handled himself during the stretch, continuing to go about his business until “it clicked.” Since then, Anderson is hitting .354 with three homers and has an .850 OPS in 156 plate appearances over 33 games.

“He went on a stretch where I don’t think he got out for like six games,” Shuck said. “That’s just his personality, and that’s why I think when he does get up here, he’s going to do well.”

Anderson’s production has become more noticeable as the White Sox have struggled to get production from their shortstops. Jimmy Rollins and Tyler Saladino have combined for a .617 OPS this season, which ranks 23rd out of the 30 teams in the majors.

But it’s not just Anderson’s bat that has caught Shuck’s attention.

“He’s athletic. He makes a ton of plays, and he looks good.

“It’s amazing. I’ve never played with him. You see him a little bit in Spring Training, but yeah, he just goes out and has fun and I think that’s why he does so well. He just goes up and hits. It’s amazing. I hope he continues, and he’s going to do well up here when he gets his chance.”

White Sox won't place Austin Jackson on disabled list for now

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White Sox won't place Austin Jackson on disabled list for now

NEW YORK -- As hot as he is, the White Sox want to prevent Austin Jackson from going on the disabled list.

So even though they’re not sure how long Jackson will be out, the White Sox are hopeful it won’t require 15 days. Jackson was out of the lineup Monday against the New York Mets and in the trainer’s room after he exited Sunday’s game with turf toe on his left foot. Jackson is hitting .464/.484/.607 with four RBIs over his last 31 plate appearances.

The White Sox recalled J.B. Shuck before Monday’s game and started him in center field in Jackson’s stead.

“We don’t necessarily if that’s DL worthy at this point,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “We’re going to try to treat him today, see how well it is. We know he can’t go today, but we don’t necessarily want to lose him for two weeks right away. With J.B. coming up it gives you a chance to fill out that outfield spot with a left-handed bat.”

“He’s been playing well, and I think that’s another part of it. You don’t necessarily want to lose him for two weeks if you don’t have to. If we can save a few days in there and get him back five days before a DL stint, it makes sense.”