The plan was to get out to Camelback early and catch Jake Peavy throwing an intrasquad game, but that was derailed when we discovered our rental car missing a large portion of the passenger window and a number of items inside. A police report and new rental car later, we arrived at the Ranch just in time to see the game between the Sox and the Indians get underway. The good news is that nobody stole the White Sox bats. They touched up the Indians number 1 starter, Ubaldo Jimenez for 7 hits and 3 runs while adding a 4 more against Indian relievers.
Plus: Paul Konerko went about his business with a pair of hits and a pair of runs. Brent Morel enjoyed a cactus league dinger. Alejandro De Aza launched a legit blast to right field that cleared the right field bullpen. Zach Stewart had an excellent day allowing just 3 hits over 5 and a third innings, perhaps angling himself for a position in the bullpen as a long man. Ray Olmedo had a good day at the plate (2-4) and in the field. He appears to have some of the quickest set of hands on the field, a big part of being a quality middle infielder.
Minus: Kosuke Fukudome did not look very good in his at-bats going 0-4 with a K. He did manage to swing and miss without doing his trademark corkscrew into the ground.
Middle: Adam Dunn played first game. That is a large man, even for first. That’s all I have to say about that.
Thornton pumpin’ cheddar
Matt Thornton looked absolutely dominant in his 9th inning appearance. There aren’t any radar postings at the park that I could see but he appeared to be back to slinging that easy cheese we used to hear about so much. 2 of the 3 outs he recorded came by way of strikeout and he used 6 pitches between them to achieve that. He’s made clear he wants another crack at closer, and though I would prefer a more flexible bullpen, he’s certainly proving that he’s still got the stuff to shut games down.
Aside from Adam Dunn appearing to feel quite comfortable hitting into the shift and the aforementioned discomfort coming from the direction of Fukudome, the day was an encouraging one on the field.
As for the Peavy intrasquad game on the back fields. He threw 7 innings to the AAA squad giving up 5 runs and striking out 6. He was mostly working on command throwing fastballs for the most part. That didn’t stop him from assuring us all that the predictions of the Sox losing 95 games in 2012 ain’t going to happen. So, you know, confidence!