John Danks will begin a minor league rehab assignment Thursday with Double-A Birmingham, a team official said Sunday.
The White Sox left-hander returned to the club late Saturday night after he pitched in extended spring training on Friday in Glendale, Ariz. Danks wonders if Gavin Floyd’s injury will expedite his schedule.
“That was hard to watch,” Danks said. “I don't know the extent of his injury but we all hope he is OK. That's actually what I said last night when it happened, ‘I'm ready.’ I'm ready to get back out there. Maybe that'll move the process along a little quicker, I don't know. As far as my recovery goes, I'm on the right path.”
[More: Floyd placed on DL, Heath called up]
Asked about his performance Friday, Danks said it was similar to his other appearances in extended spring, though he wasn’t as sharp as he’d like to have been. Ventura said he received a good report on Danks’ outing and knew the plan calls for the pitcher to get into a minor-league game.
“I know he’s headed out to pitch somewhere other than Arizona, which is good,” Ventura said. “He had a positive report and I’m sure he’s looking forward to pitching somewhere else besides Arizona.”
Danks expects he’ll need to make several minor-league appearances before he can pitch in the majors. Most of his starts in extended spring training have been limited to six innings and 70 pitches. Danks said he’s had nothing but regular soreness in the days after his appearances.
He’s also excited to get back into action as opposed to simulated games.
“I'm excited to go pitch in an atmosphere,” Danks said. “To graduate from Arizona and get to move on, that's a good thing. There's going to be a couple people there and it's actually run as a game. That's the big thing. In extended it's like a high school scrimmage. It'll be fun to get out there and pitch in an atmosphere.”
Keppinger out again
Jeff Keppinger was out of the lineup again Sunday but Ventura is confident he won’t go on the DL. Keppinger missed a third straight game with back spasms. But Ventura believes he’ll have his infielder back in the lineup when the team opens a three-game series at Texas on Tuesday.
“It looks like he’ll be good by Tuesday for sure,” Ventura said. “I’m looking a little more urgent than that as far as you’d like it to be some point today.”
Tekotte optioned to Triple-A
The White Sox optioned outfielder Blake Tekotte to Triple-A Charlotte on Sunday. The club announced it will make a corresponding move before Tuesday’s series opener at the Texas Rangers.
The White Sox open an eight-game road trip Tuesday and with Hector Santiago sliding into the rotation it’s likely the team will recall a relief pitcher.
Tekotte was 0-for-2 with a walk in three games played.