DENVER — With 15 innings pitched by starters the past two games, the White Sox bullpen is fresh as it begins a series at Coors Field.
John Danks threw seven innings against the Kansas City Royals on Saturday, and Chris Sale twirled eight more against them on Sunday. Those performances have the bullpen in a lot better shape than it was in after relievers combined for 12 innings the previous three games. Considering the White Sox are at Coors Field, where pitch counts soar and offense is king, they’re in a better spot.
“Our first series we had a couple of games in there where you’re using guys long,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “We get Chris doing what he did yesterday, it gets everything back in line. Those guys did what they needed to do to get that bullpen back in order where everybody feels pretty good about going out there.”
Ronald Belisario hasn’t pitched since Thursday. Daniel Webb should be fresh as his last appearance was Wednesday. Matt Lindstrom has only pitched one time in the past three games, and long man Jacob Petricka has been rested after a 2 2/3-inning performance on Friday.
Even though the unit has a 6.32 ERA over its first six games, Ventura isn’t panicking after the White Sox got to the Royals’ bullpen two straight games.
“Kansas City, we got them late, and they have a really good bullpen,” Ventura said. “Early, it’s always tough to tell until teams settle in. These guys are going out battling. I think probably too much is put into it right away. You don’t really want to make a judgment on a guy this early in. We’re confident these guys are going to eventually do that job.”
— Avisail Garcia is OK and was in the lineup Monday after he was shaken up diving for a fly ball in Sunday’s win. Garcia stayed in the game after his fourth-inning grab to rob Alex Gordon.
“He didn’t spend a whole lot of time with (trainer Herm Schneider), so that’s good news,” Ventura said. “It didn’t look very good when he did it, but he seems fine.”
— Gordon Beckham (oblique strain) didn’t play in either game of a doubleheader at Double-A Birmingham on Monday.
“He wants to play, but you’re just cautious because anytime he feels anything you don’t want to just run him out there, just to do it all over again,” Ventura said. “Just being cautious.”