8/1/2014 8:59 P.M. ET
Putnam feels good after bullpen session
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- White Sox reliever Zach Putnam tested the inflammation in his right shoulder that sent him to the disabled list on July 24 by playing catch Friday and then throwing a 20-pitch bullpen session featuring all fastballs.
"I felt really good," Putnam said. "I'm not trying to force it right now. Just trying to feel it out."
Manager Robin Ventura had suggested Putnam might need a short Minor League injury rehab assignment before returning to the White Sox. But Putnam sounded as if that assignment might not be needed.
"With the way I feel physically, if I had to get in there tomorrow, I think I'd be OK," Putnam said. "It's just a matter now of fine-tuning, having not thrown for a week, trying to shake the rust off a little bit."
Putnam plans to add some cutters to Sunday's bullpen session, with his split-finger being the last pitch incorporated.
GM Hahn disappointed by stalled deal
CHICAGO -- Rick Hahn did not say anything about potential White Sox targets in the weeks, hours and minutes leading up to Thursday's non-waiver Trade Deadline. But more than 24 hours after the 3 p.m. CT deadline passed, the White Sox general manager admitted that his organization was close to a three-team deal that would have netted the White Sox a player they were after for a while.
That deal fell apart at 1 p.m. CT and it was relatively quiet for the White Sox for the next two hours.
"I would probably characterize our feelings as mildly disappointed simply because of our history," said Hahn prior to Friday's series opener with the Twins. "We've shown a desire to make trades and we would've loved the opportunity to continue the process we started a year ago of adding key pieces in this sort of restructuring or retooling or whatever you want to call it, going forward.
"Unfortunately, the right opportunity just did not present itself. At the bare minimum, we at least got a feel for some of the value of our players going forward and hopefully laid the groundwork for some future deals, whether it's the ill-fated three-way I referenced or some other ones that we didn't get very far on but at least had some decent dialogue."
In trying to guess this White Sox trade target, it's safe to say that it was a player who would help the South Siders over these final two months as well as in the future. It also figured to be a left-handed bat, at a position such as catcher or in the outfield. Pitching also has been held as a White Sox premium, regardless of the strength of their situation in the rotation or bullpen.
Hahn quipped that with all of the high-profile moves Thursday, he felt like a "kid looking out the window with all his friends playing outside, while I was inside practicing the violin."
"Again, would've loved to have done something and sit here today to tell you we're continuing the process," Hahn said. "It didn't happen, but hopefully within the coming weeks or months I'll be able to remind you of this conversation and say, 'This is what we were talking about and the groundwork started around the Trade Deadline.'
"We're going to be diligent on the waiver wire. We've been able to do some August waiver deals in recent memory and we have some nice groundwork laid on some certain fronts. How our club or other clubs perform over the coming weeks could change some matches."
Pitching coach Cooper returns to White Sox
CHICAGO -- White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper returned to the dugout for Friday's series opener against the Twins after missing 11 games because of vertigo. Cooper was unable to travel because of the inner-ear issue and still didn't feel 100 percent, but felt good enough to be with the team.
Cooper also managed to keep a sense of humor about the whole situation, pointing out that he came back for a Chris Sale start, so he certainly hadn't lost all his wits.
"I've been tested, MRI on my brain and … they found nothing," said Cooper, pausing for a quick laugh while talking with the media.
"All I knew is I felt horrible. I felt sick. Throwing up violently and spinning for three days," said Cooper. "I said, 'Man, I would rather have diverticulitis than this.' I could go with a bad stomach. This stuff, I can't function. It's unmanageable. Then your mind starts to go to other places a little bit. Is it something else?"
Diverticulitis cost Cooper 10 games in 2013, but it was easier to deal with than vertigo as Cooper explained. He was able to gain a new perspective on the White Sox by watching them on television, the highlight of his days, and appreciated the fight of this squad, not to mention the 5-2 road trip. Manager Robin Ventura was glad to have Cooper back, but also wasn't sure at what capacity his pitching coach could function with his ongoing recovery.
"If he's capable of doing it, I'm sure he's going to do it," said Ventura of Cooper and mound visits, as an example. "Having talked to him over the course of the week and where he's at now, I know he's happy to be here, but he doesn't feel that great."
"You lean real quick that everything continues to go on whether you are here or not. It's funny how your mind works, too," Cooper said. "I know that health and family are the two most important things to anybody. But I'll tell you what -- you start to feel a little bit guilty that this is your job and you are not here. However crazy that is, that was in my mind."
Saladino's season over following Tommy John surgery
CHICAGO -- Minor League infielder Tyler Saladino had season-ending Tommy John Surgery after tearing the ulnar collateral ligament in his right arm.
"With a position player, it's a little different from a pitcher in terms of the recovery," said White Sox general manager Rick Hahn. "Hopefully, by Opening Day, he's without restriction, but I don't have the exact timing on that. But he's done for the year."
Saladino, 25, had put himself into the big league mix by hitting .310 with nine homers and 43 RBIs for Triple-A Charlotte.
"Absolutely. He's an interesting offensive player," said Hahn of the right-handed-hitting infielder. "He's got a little bit of pop, little bit of speed and he gets on base. But he's shown this year at Charlotte some pretty good defensive versatility, too, playing all throughout the infield and evening taking reps in the corner outfield.
"He's a valuable guy, and it's unfortunate that he had that injury. He was certainly working himself into that mix to get up here to Chicago at some point. He'll get the repair done and be back at it next year."
Third to first
• Charlotte first baseman/designated hitter Andy Wilkins has been named International League Player of the Month for July. Wilkins, 25, led the league with 12 home runs, 31 RBIs, 44 hits, 21 extra-base hits and a .857 slugging percentage, and finished second with a .419 average and 24 runs scored.
• Olympic gymnast McKayala Maroney threw out one of Friday's ceremonial first pitches after executing two cartwheels toward home plate and temporary catcher John Danks.
• Friday's contest marked the popular Elvis Night promotion.