9/7/2013 7:20 P.M. ET
Prospect Semien makes second career start
By Todd Karpovich / Special to MLB.com
BALTIMORE -- Marcus Semien said he was excited to get his second career start on Saturday against the Orioles, and he was also looking forward to returning with the team to Chicago.
Then, he will get the opportunity to see U.S. Cellular Field for the first time as a Major Leaguer.
Semien got his first career start on Wednesday against the Yankees and went 2-for-4 with an RBI playing third base. Semien was primarily a shortstop in the Minors, but on Saturday, manager Robin Ventura again started him at third in place of Jeff Keppinger, who moved over to first.
"It's always exciting when you're playing," said Semien, who went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts in Saturday's 4-3 loss before he was pinch-hit for in the 10th. "I've been happy to be up here, and I am trying to learn as much as I can. Today, I'll just treat it like any other game and try as hard as I can."
Ventura has said that he wants to get an extended look at some of the younger players in September to see if they can be viable options for the Major League club next season.
"I am just focused on what I can do right now to help the team and what I can do to play my best baseball," Semien said. "I am doing some early hitting and some early defense, keeping the blood flowing. In the Minor Leagues, I pretty much played everyday. This is my first time coming off the bench."
Semien, Chicago's eighth-ranked prospect according to MLB.com, played at both Double-A Birmingham, where he led the league in runs (90) and on-base percentage (.420), and Triple-A Charlotte this season.
Ventura said there hasn't seemed to be too big of an adjustment for Semien at the Major League level.
"He looked like he belonged," Ventura said. "We want to give him as many at-bats as we got to see what we've got as far as next year. It started in New York and he's gonna continue to get opportunities as we go along."
Versatility key for some younger players
BALTIMORE -- White Sox manager Robin Ventura likes the versatility of his team, especially with some of the younger players that have been promoted with the expanded rosters this month.
Leury Garcia is one of those players, because he is capable of playing all three outfield positions. Conor Gillaspie spent time at both first and third base in the Minors. Marcus Semien can also play multiple spots in the infield, which gives Ventura several options with the lineup.
"You can be more flexible," Ventura said. "We've had some injuries where we haven't had that flexibility to move guys around. When you have guys who can play multiple positions, it just becomes easier to give a guy a day off or if an injury hits, you can fill that with a guy whose been here at the big league level."
Ventura said it works to the players' advantage when they can play multiple positions.
"It gives them an opportunity to be on the team if you're not a starter," Ventura said. "It increases your value."
In Saturday's 4-3 loss to the Orioles in 10 innings, Garcia was in center and Semien at third while Gillaspie sat. Garcia made is second error of the year, while Gillaspie pinch-hit for Semien in the 10th inning and hit a go-ahead home run.
• White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper is still dealing with the effects of stomach condition that sent him to the hospital in April.
Ventura said Cooper was likely headed back to the hospital on Saturday in Baltimore to deal with symptoms associated with Diverticulitis, which is an inflammation of the bowel.
"He was not feeling good [on Friday], and was definitely not feeling good today," Ventura said. "We're going home [on Sunday]. He'll probably stay in the hospital today and fly home with us tomorrow and see what happens in Chicago."
• Outfielder Jared Mitchell was added to the White Sox Fall League roster, while outfielder Brandon Jacobs is on the taxi squad. They will join righty Chris Bassitt, infielder Micah Johnson, lefty Charlie Leesman, righty Stephen McCray, Semien and right-handed reliever Kevin Vance on the Glendale Desert Dogs.
Todd Karpovich is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.