SAN DIEGO -- The White Sox have accomplished a lot of good this spring and Robin Ventura doesn’t wish to pick it apart.
Prior to Saturday’s exhibition against the San Diego Padres, the White Sox manager said he’s pleased with all aspects of his club’s spring performance. A 5-3 winner on Friday night, the White Sox are 16-13-1 headed into Saturday’s spring finale. The team is set to hold a workout at the Oakland Coliseum on Sunday morning before it opens the season Monday at 9:05 p.m. CST.
“I’m happy with them,” Ventura said. “I’m happy with where they’re at and they’re ready to go.”
Ventura has reason to be pleased, particularly from an execution standpoint. At least so far the White Sox have looked sharp on plays that have dogged them in the past. In Friday’s victory, J.B. Shuck perfectly executed a suicide squeeze for an insurance run and Jose Abreu got the team out of a potential rally with a nice cutoff and throw.
Those two plays come on the heels of a pickoff play/rundown that resulted in an out on Wednesday, something that had given the club a little trouble earlier in camp.
“You’re always happy when you see execution,” Ventura said. “That’s part of playing baseball is that those guys can execute. They’ve been doing it all spring long, that’s the biggest thing. They’ve been working on it. You have to put it in play every once in a while and last night was an indication of that.”
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You also have to give Adam Eaton time to rest when he dives around the way he does.
The White Sox center fielder made it clear he’s Opening Day ready on Friday as he unleashed a nice throw from right field, dove into second base on a stolen base attempt and made a diving grab in the outfield.
Eaton has shown no signs of being hampered by his October shoulder surgery. But Ventura is using him as the team’s designated hitter on Saturday to give his outfielder a chance to rest before Monday’s opener.
“He’s where he needs to be and let’s keep him on ice for another day or two,” Ventura said.