6/15/2014 7:50 P.M. ET
Aggressive bunting helps Eaton break out of slump
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- Adam Eaton tried to drop down a bunt during a recent game against Detroit's Justin Verlander.
That action doesn't serve as a surprise coming from the exceptional bat handler who leads off for the White Sox. The fact that it came with two strikes and Eaton bunted through the pitch was a bit more interesting.
But Eaton said Sunday that bunting with two strikes in the count certainly isn't out of the question in the future.
"I'm more willing to put it down, because guys do then give me some space," Eaton said. "As long as I get it down in fair territory, I have a chance to beat it out. Definitely I feel confident.
"I haven't been bunting as much as I like to. That's more because I've been focusing on having good at-bats. When things start to flow a little better, I'll start bunting more and start putting pressure on defenses."
Eaton was mired in a 3-for-35 slump, but he never lost the confidence and energy that has made him a force at the top of the White Sox lineup. He exited Sunday's 6-3 loss to the Royals having reached base in 11 straight games, including reaching base five times via two hits and three walks on Friday, and he is operating under a humorous but effective premise in regard to offensive funks.
"You can only [stink] for so long," said Eaton with a laugh. "You put yourself in such a hole like I did, it takes a little while for numbers to get back where they were. I won't be happy for probably another two weeks to a month where we can get back to where we need to be. Hopefully we can continue to work toward that.
"As a leadoff hitter, you are successful when you are getting on base so I can score runs. But just having quality at-bats is what I always look at. The more quality at-bats you can have, the better I think your numbers will be."
Fatherhood reminds White Sox what's important
CHICAGO -- Before the arrival of his son, Rylan, Chris Sale admits that bad baseball performances stuck with him a little longer.
"In college, I used to let that stuff eat at me pretty hard. On the drive home getting to the dorm room, and stuff like that," Sale said. "I would still kind of be in a [bad] mood or whatnot.
"It's definitely easy being home and having him, even when he comes on the road occasionally, it's fun to be able to get away from it. Once you walk through the door, baseball is the last thing on your mind."
Fatherhood was celebrated by many White Sox players and players across Major League Baseball on Father's Day Sunday. As Sale pointed out, whether he has a good game or bad game, his four-year-old son doesn't really care. He's just happy to see his dad home and ready to play.
"He's ready to play with the nerf guns or go to the park," said a smiling Sale. "It definitely takes your mind off of it. Helps you separate good from bad. It's kind of like it goes all out the window once you get home and get to see him. He's still having fun and you can't take it home with you. If you are in a bad mood, it's going to ruin his day."
"They're just happy you're home and you have to be able to separate what you did at the field and your attitude and everything else, because you're home," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura, who is the father of three daughters and one son. "It helps on occasion too. When you beat yourself up over how you're playing or how the team's going, little kids don't care. They're just glad you're there and they want you to give them you full attention which they deserve."
Sale appreciates the family-friendly atmosphere in the White Sox clubhouse, with a few players' sons visiting on Sunday.
"Our schedule is hectic and as much focus as we put on what we do, it's nice to get away from that," Sale said. "It's fun to see them run around and have fun. It loosens us up and keeps us mellowed out a little bit."
Ventura, White Sox not looking for outside help
CHICAGO -- With the White Sox staying in contention amid a competitive, but certainly not power-packed American League Central division, the question of whether the team will add talent as the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline approaches has been front and center.
Chicago has never been a team to shy away from going for it all, but with its reshaping process off to such a good start, the team won't change its big-picture focus for an outside shot to win in 2014.
It has to be more concrete. And manager Robin Ventura is more than aware of that situation.
"Even the changes we made this year, you go to younger guys and you don't necessarily throw them away," Ventura said. "There is a combo of guys getting experience and play that there is just not talk of that even early with the way we played.
"There is a certain factor of, 'This is it.' Don't be looking for any help on the outside."
White Sox still winless on Saturdays
CHICAGO -- Kansas City's 9-1 victory in Game 2 of the three-game set dropped the White Sox to 0-11 this season during games played on Saturday. That streak includes Ronald Belisario losing a three-run lead in the ninth to the Yankees on May 24 and Chris Sale losing a five-run lead in the eighth at Anaheim on June 7.
And there really is no reason for this Saturday failure, aside from one of those quirky baseball statistics.
"We all stay kind of in our routines," White Sox center fielder Adam Eaton said. "I think we all like hitting during the day. I couldn't really tell you. I think it's a weird stat. Hopefully we can change that next Saturday."
"No rhyme or reason," Sale said. "It's not like we come in and say, 'Today is Saturday. We are giving up.'"
Third to first
• Adrian Nieto got the start behind the plate Sunday with Andre Rienzo on the mound, giving the rookie some at-bats and providing a mental health day for Tyler Flowers. The White Sox starting catcher is in a 0-for-22 drought with 18 strikeouts.
"The way [Flowers] has been swinging, he's been working on things, timing, mechanical stuff, and it can wear on you," Ventura said. "So it's a combo."
"If it was easy, everybody would do it up here," said White Sox captain Paul Konerko in support of Flowers. "It's not easy. But he's done a lot of good things and he's got to remember that, and it can turn. It will turn. And when it turns, it usually turns for a long time. So you just got to keep grinding and doing it the right way, which he is."
• Freshman outfielders Corey Ray (Louisville) and Ro Coleman (Vanderbilt), who were teammates at Chicago's Simeon Career Academy, are the first products of the White Sox Amateur City Elite (ACE) program to compete at the College World Series.
Coleman went 1-4 with a run scored Saturday night, while Ray was 0-3 with a walk as Vanderbilt defeated Louisville, 5-2, in Game 2 of the College World Series in Omaha.
• Avisail Garcia continued to play catch Sunday, under the guidance of White Sox head athletic trainer Herm Schneider. Garcia, who was lost for the season after undergoing April surgery to repair a torn labrum and avulsion fracture in his left shoulder, threw from up to 200 feet on Sunday.