Assorted Spring Training Notes From March 8th & 9th


Aaron Hill goofin’ around! (Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports)

On Friday, Matt and I had some bad luck in that the White Sox were rained out after 3 innings. Rainouts always hurt more in person than when you’re watching on TV, and the rain was paired with a sudden cold snap for which we were woefully unprepared. Regardless, despite Jeff Gray starting, the game was called with Chicago up 4-1 on the Padres. Items of note: Carlos Quentin was hit by a pitch moments after yours truly predicted it. Peavy wound up throwing a side session instead of trying to pitch in the threat of cold and rain. Most of the White Sox’ hits were sharply hit singles off of Clayton Richard, including a line drive from Carlos Sanchez. Padres prospect Jedd Gyorko– who is supposed to have a good bat and question marks defensively at 2B – made a very slick play up the middle and certainly looked like he belonged there.

Saturday’s game went the full 9 innings, and they were action-packed with 30 combined hits and 20 combined runs. John Danks was making his second start, and he had lots of trouble locating. He soldiered through his innings, but his release point was a mess and he could have given up even more runs than he did. At this point, though, it’s a victory that Danks made a second start, threw a lot of pitches, and looked like he wasn’t holding back in terms of his repertoire. Matt Thornton got knocked around pretty hard, giving up line drive singles and doubles all over the park. From watching his bullpen, it looked like Thornton was trying to throw a lot of offspeed stuff, so that would help explain why he did so poorly.

Paul Konerko hit another home run, giving him three in the two games that I saw him play in. Jared Mitchell had a fantastic game, with a hard-hit single and a stolen base, a deep double that he stretched into a triple, and a beautiful diving catch that he sprinted in on for a sinking line drive in right. Stefan Gartrell is still around and made an absolutely gorgeous throw on the fly from left that beat the runner but Hector Giminez dropped it. Alexei Ramirez looked like he had his swing synced up nicely and laced a couple of hits in his first two PAs. Josh Bell’s left-handed swing looked stronger than his right.

Hector Santiago is a total goofball and was joking around non-stop in the bullpen when he wasn’t pitching. I can also confirm that Jeff Keppinger can hit line drives off of left-handed pitching.