7/9/2013 12:42 A.M. ET
Quintana focused on delivering strong second half
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- Jose Quintana made a Friday stop at the Yankees' complex in Tampa, Fla., to check in on some old friends and coaches, not to mention chat with a few younger players from Colombia. The Yankees gave up on the southpaw in the 2011 offseason, and Quintana made an immediate impact with the White Sox in 2012.
Twenty-two of his 25 appearances came as a starter, but by Quintana's own admission, he tired as his first big league season progressed. A 5.01 second-half ERA supports that assessment.
So Quintana worked hard at gaining more offseason strength to ensure his August and September will be as good as his April and May. The 24-year-old feels in shape for a strong post All-Star break showing, with starts Tuesday in Detroit and Sunday in Philadelphia to close out the first half.
"My goal was to get stronger, so I could be durable throughout the whole season," said Quintana through translator and White Sox coach Lino Diaz. "I feel really good right now."
Quintana doesn't really search for answers as to why the Yankees parted ways with him, even after posting a 10-2 record with a 2.91 ERA for Class A Advanced Tampa in 2011. He also doesn't seem worried about a growing stretch of no-decisions that includes all six starts in June and an 11-strikeout, two-hit scoreless effort over seven innings Thursday at home against the Orioles.
"I'm not frustrated because I felt like I've had some good outings," Quintana said. "As long as I'm giving the team an opportunity to win, that's what I can control."
Injured All-Star Crain starting to feel better
CHICAGO -- A scoreless streak of 29 straight appearances and 29 consecutive innings helped Jesse Crain earn the first All-Star appearance of his 10-year career, having been voted in by the players.
To achieve that scoreless streak, the right-hander knows it took more than just great individual pitching.
"You have to have a lot of luck to go on streaks and not give up an earned run," said Crain, who reached 31 games without yielding an earned run. "There are guys on base for sure. So you have to have good defense, plays made behind you. Everything works together when you go on streaks like that.
"How many times do you see it, a run that shouldn't happen. And to be able to go out there 29 or 30 times without that happening, there are a lot of things that have to happen for that."
That franchise-record scoreless streak has been replaced by a right shoulder strain and ensuing trip to the disabled list for Crain, keeping him out of action for the All-Star Game at Citi Field. Crain had a similar issue last season and in '09 with the Twins, giving him a frame of reference for this season's work to get back.
The shoulder remained sore on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, but Crain hopes the pain was part of the healing process as he felt better over the last couple of days.
"I'm ready for that next step and start strengthening it and throwing again," Crain said. "My arm just gets tired and when that happens, unfortunately I strain it.
"Every year, I try to make some kind of tweaks to see if I can figure out what ... maybe cut down on throwing before games. I like to get out there and stretch out. It's hard to judge it because every single year you have more workload, less workload. You just take it year by year. Hopefully, it's something I can control from here on out."
Turnover doesn't change Cooper's role
CHICAGO -- When it comes to the last-place White Sox rebuilding or retooling, with the possibility of pitchers Jake Peavy, John Danks, Jesse Crain, Matt Lindstrom and Matt Thornton being moved in the process, pitching coach Don Cooper has a theory.
"I'm always disappointed when we lose guys, but I do know that's a fact of the game. It happens," Cooper said. "We've lost guys over the years. We lost [Mark] Buehrle. If you can lose Buehrle, you can lose anybody."
Buehrle left for Miami via free agency after the 2011 season, but this current change figures to be a little bit different. General manager Rick Hahn needs to reshape this team that has underachieved since the last few weeks of the 2012 campaign and has fallen flat in 2013.
Many believe with the club's top-notch pitching, it doesn't need a full rebuilding process. Much like the change from 72-90 in 2007 to the American League Central title in 2008, these talented arms can put the South Siders in position for a quick turnaround.
But that thought process might actually have the effect of putting a band-aid on a deeper cut. It's players such as a healthy Peavy and Crain, for example, that will give the White Sox the biggest return of young, impact-type players.
Any future moves won't hamper Cooper's confidence.
"That's up to someone else to do that," said Cooper. "We are in player development. I'm not in player procurement. All I think about is our 12 guys we've got. That's where our focus, my focus has always been.
"My job never changes. The names will change and the people will change, but nothing else does."
Phegley becoming a hometown hero in Terre Haute
CHICAGO -- Josh Phegley's rise to the Majors and ascension to the primary catching job with the White Sox has resonated all the way back to his hometown of Terre Haute, Ind.
Two television stations from Terre Haute made the trip to Chicago on Monday for the Phegley story, pointing out that Phegley is the first local to play in the Majors since Brian Dorsett, who was a catcher with the Cubs in 1996.
Phegley also stands as the first Mr. Baseball in Indiana from Terre Haute, and the highest First-Year Player Draft pick from Terre Haute. White Sox games had a high viewing rate at local establishments during this past weekend, according to one member of the coverage crew.
"I'm very proud to hear those people are behind me. I'm from Terre Haute, and I will always represent them," said Phegley, a popular pregame subject for the Chicago media as well. "I'm glad to hear everybody is following me. I'm glad to see some people make a few games. I saw my high school coach down in [St. Petersburg] for a few games, so it's been awesome."
Phegley went 1-for-3 with his second home run in the 8-2 loss to the Cubs.
Third to first
• Manager Robin Ventura stressed there are worse things in life for a player to deal with than trade rumors. But he understands this 2013 situation has not been an easy one for his team.
"You wear it when you're here, you wear it when you go home," Ventura said. "It's always on your mind. For coaches all the way down to players, even if a guy's doing well, he's still wearing it.
"That's the toughest part. You just try to monitor it and make sure they realize there are worse things going than coming to the park and being a Major League Baseball player."
• Dewayne Wise is 1-for-6 with one RBI over two injury rehab games for Triple-A Charlotte. Wise has played center field in both games to test his strained right oblique after returning from his first rehab assignment for a right hamstring strain on June 20.
• Of the 86 games played by the White Sox, 67 have been decided by three runs or fewer. That 77.9 percent total includes 26 of the last 33, with the White Sox holding a 7-19 record in those contests.
• John Danks is 0-5 with a 6.43 ERA over five road starts and 2-1 with a 2.22 ERA over four home starts.