8/18/2014 7:37 P.M. ET
Danks looking more to left for offensive success
By Scott Merkin / MLB.com
CHICAGO -- Prior to last Friday's series opener at U.S. Cellular Field, Blue Jays infielder Steven Tolleson mentioned to the left-handed-hitting Jordan Danks that Toronto was going to shift defensively toward the right against him.
"I raised my hand immediately and said, 'I wouldn't do that,'" said Danks of the conversation he had with his teammate from the 2013 Triple-A Charlotte squad. "I'm glad they did, actually."
Danks has gone 7-for-20 in his return to the White Sox, and has been going the other way more after admitting to getting a little pull-happy. He hit two singles to left and a two-run homer to left against the Blue Jays over the weekend.
"I've always said that my power is center to left-center gap. I'm just trying to get back to what I know," he said. "Whenever I pull the ball, it's usually a groundout to the second baseman. I was aware of the shift and everything and even thought about laying down a bunt every now and then.
"Just not necessarily trying to go over there, but hitting the ball where it's pitched. I got that pitch to hit and ended up going that way."
Eaton steadily moving toward healthy return
CHICAGO -- Adam Eaton threw from 120 feet and took dry swings on Monday as part of his rehab work after being put on the disabled list on Aug. 9 with a strained right oblique. Eaton already had incorporated abs activities into his regimen this past weekend.
"All the talks with [head athletic trainer] Herm [Schneider] seem right on schedule, which is good," Eaton said. "I'm pretty enthused. I'm pretty happy ... with the progress we've made, and Herm seems like we are right on track where we need to be. We'll get there slowly but surely.
"Throwing was a big step, and so was swinging left-handed. I might actually be swinging and hitting a baseball the next couple of days. I'm not sure. I think I'm due to come off [the DL on] Sunday, so I would imagine it probably would come in the next couple of days where we would actually hit a baseball and go from there."
Eaton has talked to Gordon Beckham, Adam Dunn and Paul Konerko, all of whom have dealt with oblique strains, about this up-and-down injury. He also understands that a quick Minor League rehab assignment might fall behind the stepping stones he reaches under Schneider's guidance.
"Herm has had a million of these," Eaton said. "I put my hands in his ability to get me healthy,"
"Even today, looking at him running around and doing stuff, it is progressing," manager Robin Ventura said. "He was swinging lightly enough that it looks like it's getting better."
Beckham making a difference with his glove
CHICAGO -- The White Sox believe that they have more than a .224 hitter in Gordon Beckham, and that he can accomplish more than his .245 career mark. But even if he never tops .250, the talented defender can make a daily difference with his glove at second base.
Beckham has a fielding percentage of .981, which ties him for 10th among American League second basemen. But his Range Factor of 5.18 tops all AL second basemen, and he has contributed to a Major League-best 131 double plays.
Through offensive doldrums that have carried through 34 games, Beckham has not let his bat get in the way of his glove.
"I don't think I would still be here if I wasn't helping the team, if I wasn't playing winning baseball," Beckham said. "Yeah, the hitting has been pretty frustrating, but I know that there's a reason I'm in there.
"So, yeah, I think I add value. And you know what? At some point the hitting will come easier. I don't know why it has been so difficult. But it will. Defensively, you go out there and save runs, and it's just the same as hitting and getting RBIs. You keep the amount of runs they score less, you have a better chance to win.
"Ultimately, whether or not I'm hitting, I know I have a chance to help the team by doing something great defensively."
Manager Robin Ventura stands as one of those who feels Beckham has it in him to do more offensively. He's just not sure where that will happen.
"I'm not saying it's here or it might be somewhere else. But I do know he's a better player than the numbers say," Ventura said. "He does make a lot of plays a lot of second basemen don't make. The hitting, I think, he probably gets in his own way a lot of the time."
Dunn addresses possible retirement again
CHICAGO -- Adam Dunn spoke to MLB.com on Saturday about the distinct possibility that this could be the final season of his 14-year, 459-homer career. Dunn addressed that topic again on Monday to a larger group of media, echoing some of the same points.
The left-handed slugger understands that there could be a need for his particular services, but he won't play just for the money, and he won't play to chase milestones, such as 500 homers.
He is not yet at the point of seeking others' advice on the matter.
"It's just like anything," Dunn said. "You're used to doing something your whole life, and I know it's going to be an adjustment, but I'm fortunate to be able to put myself in this situation at a pretty young age to make the call. There's nothing bad about that. I'm not sad about that. I'm actually pretty happy about it.
"I don't know. I don't have the answer. If I had to pick it today, I know what the answer would be."
When asked what that answer would be, he smiled and responded, "None of your business."
Third to first
• Minnie Minoso, the ever-popular White Sox legend, was released from St. Joseph hospital and is feeling good after falling off his boat on Friday. The White Sox told the 88-year-old Minoso to pass on the games and continue resting and recovering at home.
• Avisail Garcia was thrown out trying to stretch a double into a triple during the eighth inning of Sunday's victory over the Blue Jays. But the encouraging part of that play was Garcia sliding feet first instead of diving head first, which resulted in a torn labrum and avulsion fracture in his left shoulder in Colorado on April 9.
"You just kind of re-program what you're doing," said Ventura. "You can still go in hard and get there fast by sliding feet first. For him having already had the injury, that's already a step in the right direction. I don't think it's holding him back at all."
• Courtney Hawkins, the White Sox top pick and 13th selection overall in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, leads the Carolina League in RBIs, with 79. The Class A Winston-Salem outfielder ranks second in homers, with 18.
• The White Sox entered Monday with three players in or near the top 10 in hitting: Conor Gillaspie (seventh, .311), Jose Abreu (10th, .305) and Eaton (11th, .304).
According to STATS LLC, the last time two White Sox players finished in the top 10 in the AL in average was 1993, when Frank Thomas (.317) was sixth and Lance Johnson (.311) was 10th. The last time three or more White Sox finished among the AL leaders in average was 1960: Al Smith, (second, .315), Minoso (third, .311), Roy Sievers (sixth, .295) and Nellie Fox (ninth, .289).