03/13/2013 9:30 PM ET
Phegley's power on display in spring
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Standing at 5-foot-10 and 220 pounds, White Sox catching prospect Josh Phegley would not necessarily be projected as a power hitter. But through 11 Cactus League games, Phegley has already knocked out three doubles and one homer among his eight hits.
So from where does he derive the power?
"I'm a pretty strong kid," said a smiling Phegley. "I don't get a lot of leverage from being tall and lanky, but I'm just trying to let the ball get to me and throw the head on it."
Phegley stands six inches shorter than starting catcher Tyler Flowers but likes to be able to give a low target to his pitchers. He also showcases his athleticism, possibly blocking a ball behind the plate that other catchers might not get to or taking the extra base through his decent speed.
Flowers and Hector Gimenez are set as the White Sox catchers to open the 2013 season. But Phegley believes his time is coming in his fifth year as part of the organization.
"You got to pay your dues," said the Indiana native, who is fully healthy after battling idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, a rare autoimmune disorder that lowers platelet counts, during the 2010 season. "This is my fourth camp, and I think it's getting closer to time for me to make an impact on the big league club."
Screams aside, Peavy satisfied with outing
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- It would be tough to guess Jake Peavy was satisfied with his 81-pitch effort against White Sox Minor Leaguers Wednesday at Camelback Ranch.
After all, the always vocal right-hander unofficially set a new personal record for most yells of displeasure after throwing a pitch and missing his desired location. But a smiling and upbeat Peavy gave high marks to the work put in, as he got up and down five times.
And as for his colorful mound commentary?
"In that environment, sometimes I don't want to get crazy, and you guys think I'm some kind of animal down there screaming and yelling, scaring children," Peavy said with a laugh. "I got a couple guys' families back there out seeing his first Spring Training, and I'm out yelling and screaming on the mound. The intensity wasn't quite Game 7 of the World Series, but at the same time a lot of good work."
Peavy pointed out that of his 81 pitches, he threw approximately 60 of them out of slide steps as if there were a fast runner such as Detroit's Austin Jackson on first base. That work essentially covered his last three innings.
"That's good work," Peavy said, "and you see a difference in the first few innings: the timing, the rhythm, everything was on point. To be able to work on stuff like that is huge for me."
Next up for Peavy is another Minor League game, during Monday's team off-day, which he joked would be a challenge given his having to get up at 7:30 a.m. and face hitters a few hours later. He will follow that start with an actual Cactus League game, against the Dodgers on March 23, although he does not appear worried about where the work takes place as long as he is getting physically and mentally sound.
He is also not concerned about coming into a dead-arm mode right now, looking at it all more as part of the preparatory process.
"I don't feel crazy fresh simply because we're tearing the body down, and we'll tear the body down for one or two more starts," said Peavy, who gave up a two-run homer to Minor Leaguer Dan Black in Wednesday's action. "We've been working hard in between these times, too, sometimes two side sessions or two throw-in sessions, just trying to work on stuff.
"So you kind of tire your arm out, plus you're building up, you're throwing more and more pitches every time out, so you're getting tired, you're getting in shape. To get in shape, you have to do something. You have to stretch yourself until you get comfortable doing that.
"Here with these next couple after this one, I'm going to take it as really like the season. I'm gonna start a little bit of throwing, a bullpen session, get ready to go in the games and try to be a little fresher going into the season. But I think this is the time of Spring Training where, most guys would tell you, my arm doesn't feel as good as it did two weeks ago, which is normal."
No long-term worries about Keppinger, Crain
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Jeff Keppinger remained out of action for Cleveland's 5-2 victory over the White Sox at Camelback Ranch, as did right-handed reliever Jesse Crain.
But White Sox manager Robin Ventura does not consider either one a question mark to break camp with the team.
Keppinger was scratched from Monday's contest against the Reds with slight inflammation in his right shoulder, while Crain has pitched only on Feb. 25 against the Giants because of a strained right adductor. Crain threw a bullpen Wednesday but was not ready to pitch in a Minor League game, while Ventura indicated Keppinger could return soon, though possibly not right away at third base.
"He's looking very good," Ventura said of Keppinger. "We actually might start him at second. I think throwing would be easier on him, just to get him in there and move him around. But he's still a couple days away.
"We're being cautious with him, and we'd rather be cautious with them than put them in there and set them back again. But right now, nothing to jeopardize the start of the season."
Third to first
• Andre Rienzo and Yan Gomes, both natives of Brazil, faced off in the third inning of Wednesday's 5-2 Cleveland victory, with Gomes drawing a walk. Rienzo was the only one of two to compete for Brazil in the World Baseball Classic, and he allowed two runs over three innings upon his return to the mound Wednesday, after not retiring any of the five batters he faced Feb. 25 against the Giants.
• Gordon Beckham has hit in five straight games.
• Brian Omogrosso allowed his first earned run of the spring in 9 2/3 innings. He worked two innings for the first time this spring in Wednesday's loss.
• Donnie Veal, Matt Thornton, Addison Reed, Nate Jones and Matt Lindstrom all pitched in Wednesday's Minor League game. Veal and Lindstrom threw two innings each.