White Sox plan for Sale bullpen on Monday

White Sox plan for Sale bullpen on Monday
May 2, 2014, 5:30 pm
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CLEVELAND -- Chris Sale will take the next step in his rehab when he throws a bullpen session on Monday.

The White Sox ace played long toss again on Friday and feels good enough to advance to the mound, manager Robin Ventura said.

Sale, who is 3-0 with a 2.30 ERA in four starts this season, is on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 18 with a left flexor muscle strain and is eligible to come off it on Saturday.

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Even though this recovery is a few days behind previous instances where Sale was sidelined, Ventura is optimistic based off what he’s heard from the left-hander.

“He knows what it feels like so he goes and throws and he knows what he’s been through before so it’s more of his comfort level of pushing it at that point,” Ventura said. “He feels it’s getting better, but in not pushing it once we are at this point. You are just making sure he’s feeling really good once he goes back out there.”

Sale, who was unavailable for comment, has been sidelined by the White Sox twice before.

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Last season, he went 15 days in between starts with a shoulder issue. The year before that, Sale made starts 11 days apart with a relief appearance in between. Ventura said this longer stint is based off Sale’s caution and he doesn’t believe it’s a long-term issue.

Sale had an MRI taken earlier this month that showed no structural damage but he initially said he was pretty sore after his previous start on April 17.

“You’re cautious about it because he’s cautious about it,” Ventura said. “He knows how he feels and it’s probably a couple days behind of what’s happened the previous two times of him going through the same thing. If it was two weeks more, there would be more concerns. But a couple more days here and there and you’re erring on the side of caution, you’re allowing him a couple more days to do that. … I think he’s fine. Time is going to be the major thing for him. As far as him being out for the year or anything like that, I have no doubt that’s not going to happen.”