CHICAGO -- Sandy Alomar made his third return trip to the South Side on Tuesday, arriving just before the start of the series opener against the Twins.
Alomar, who played with the White Sox in 2001 and part of 2002 before he was traded away and then joined the team again for the 2003 and 2004 seasons, said that he never expected to be back in a Sox uniform but considers Chicago home.
"When I heard the rumors, I mentioned something to my wife and she got all excited and said it would be great," Alomar said. "Don't take me wrong, I like the LA organization, it was great. But it was far from home and it wasn't here. This is awesome over here."
He was acquired Sunday in a deal that sent Minor League reliever B.J. LaMura to the Dodgers, and saw the release of backup catcher Chris Widger to make a space for Alomar on the roster. Alomar had only played in 27 games this season for the Dodgers, but had a .323 average with nine RBIs.
"It's good and bad, because I kind of feel like I'm a little rusty. Hopefully I can get it back together," Alomar said. "I feel fresh, I feel like I can play. Hopefully A.J. deeds some days off in the future, and I'm there to assist him."
Alomar, a 19-year veteran, has worked with every Sox starter except Javier Vazquez and received some credit for helping Mark Buehrle start his successful career in 2001.
"Just my first year, knowing that he had been in the league 15 years, he had seen these hitters and knows how to attack them," Buehrle said. "As a rookie coming up, I had no clue what to throw and how to pitch guys. Whatever he put down, I wasn't going to be shaking Sandy Alomar Jr. off."
The acquisition was one that pitching coach Don Cooper specifically asked for, because he thought Alomar's experience with the pitchers and his right-handed bat would help the team.
While Alomar has played with several members of the current roster in his previous stints with the White Sox, he also played with Jim Thome for the Indians from Thome's rookie season in 1991 to 2000. As Alomar greeted Thome in the clubhouse, he said it was strange to see him in black and white.
"He's definitely one of the most professional guys I've ever played with before," Thome said. "He took me in as his roommate. Great, great guy."
Leslie Parker is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.