4/13/2013 7:47 P.M. ET
Konerko gets second straight start at DH
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
CLEVELAND -- For a second straight game, Paul Konerko started at designated hitter and Adam Dunn was at first base for the White Sox. Konerko had an RBI single in his first at-bat on Saturday.
"One of those with the weather where it's easier to keep him loose," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura of Konerko's DH move in the 44-degree game-time temperature. "He mentioned it earlier in Chicago… staying warm, staying loose.
"He gets out there and doesn't have time to stay loose because he's out there and getting stiff. He's out there with no time to stretch if he leads off an inning."
Dunn has started two games in left and two at first base during the first five games of this 10-game, three-city road trip. With the White Sox carrying 13 pitchers, Ventura would use Dunn in left again if necessary.
"If we need to start moving people around, he's the option to go out there," Ventura said. "Having three guys [on the bench] limits you a little bit. I don't see us being like this for a month. But for right now, it works."
Dunn struggling to drive in runs consistently
CLEVELAND -- Adam Dunn seemed to be a bit tough on himself following the White Sox 1-0 loss to the Indians on Friday, saying he had been "terrible" through the first 10 games.
After all, the entire White Sox offense has struggled this season to come up with the big hit. But with run production serving as Dunn's primary focus, he takes his shortcomings personally.
"That's what I care about," Dunn said. "If I'm not driving in runs or scoring runs, that's where I have a problem. I'm not doing it now and it better turn around quick.
"I do feel good at the plate. It's just frustrating for me when I leave so many guys on base and don't drive them in. You know, it's like three or four of these games, personally I had a chance to break it open or tie it or whatever and I haven't been able to get the hit yet."
Dunn went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts on Saturday, although he just missed a first-inning homer, and is now hitting .146 with two homers and five RBIs. He's hitting .182 with four RBIs with runners in scoring position. The designated hitter has noticed fouling off more pitches than usual, pitches he usually puts in play, which is a sign, in Dunn's mind, of not swinging the bat as well as he could.
"I'm out in front a little bit or the ball is beating me a little bit," Dunn said. "I need to find that happy medium and start hitting the ball hard.
"Again, that's what we are talking about what I do, that's my thing. Scoring runs and driving in runs. When I have chances to open games up early or late and not get it done, that wears on me a little bit."
Flowers not worried about recent slump
CLEVELAND -- Just as White Sox starting catcher Tyler Flowers wasn't ready to accept American League Most Valuable Player honors after five hits in his first 12 at-bats this season, he isn't about to panic over his 2-for-23 funk.
So what's missing in Flowers' mind over these past six games?
"Hits," said Flowers with a laugh.
"They've made some good pitches, and I've expanded my zone a little bit sometimes with some of the strikeouts and all. I really pretty much feel the same. I've had good swings and good pitches to swing at off of quality pitchers. I put some decent hit balls in play and they haven't found holes.
"Really not much to worry about yet. Just continue to grind it out and have quality at-bats."
Although Flowers, who went 0-for-4 with three K's on Saturday, ideally would like two or three hits every game, the backstop won't base his day's success solely on what he does with the bat.
"That really isn't the determining factor for me having a good or bad day," Flowers said. "It's more about us winning and pitchers having good starts and throwing the ball effectively to give us a chance.
"I'm very confident in what I can do and where I'm at right now. I just think it's a stretch where nothing has really gone my way with finding holes or getting good pitches to get a hold of. There will be plenty of stretches where you don't put hits together for a period of time. I definitely feel comfortable. I feel healthy, I feel fresh."
• Alex Rios' 16-game hitting streak, dating back to Sept. 26, 2012, came to a close during an 0-for-4 effort in Saturday's 9-4 loss to the Indians. Rios had hit in all 10 games this season.
"It had to stop at some point. I didn't expect it to go for a long time," Rios said. "The most important thing is I had two good at-bats and I believe I'm where I want to be and that's the most important thing.
"It would be nice to keep that streak going. But it had to end at some point so I'm glad I took great at-bats."
• White Sox manager Robin Ventura spoke Saturday morning to pitching coach Don Cooper, who was released from the hospital and was flying to Chicago. Cooper has missed the entire road trip due to a bout of diverticulitis (a digestive disorder).
"I don't know if he's feeling that much better, but he's glad to be out of the hospital," Ventura said. "He's in some pain and not feeling too good."
Ventura added that Cooper would probably be meeting with White Sox doctors either Saturday or Sunday.
• Jose Quintana picked up the fourth no-decision of his career in 24 starts when he has thrown at least seven scoreless innings, after allowing one hit over seven innings in Friday's 1-0 White Sox loss.
"He's got the little cutter in to righties. And then he was really commanding arm side with his fastball," Cleveland manager Terry Francona said of Quintana. "And then he started getting comfortable and he started flipping that breaking ball in on hitter's counts. He pitched a really good game."