White Sox Fall to Orioles, Konerko and Crain Placed on DL

By Mark Gonzales Tribune reporter10:14 p.m. CDT, July 3, 2013

Manager Robin Ventura believes that Gordon Beckham’s power will eventually return once his left hand is fully healed after missing nearly two months because of a hamate bone fracture.

But Beckham showed Wednesday night that his hand seems fine, has evidenced by his first home run of the season that was one of the few highlights for the Chicago White Sox in a 4-2 loss to Baltimore.

“My hand is pretty much over the hump,” Beckham said. “There are some times I feel it a little bit, but I’d say 99 percent of the time, it’s pretty normal. I’m still wearing a pad in my batting glove, but it’s pretty normal.”

Beckham had two hits and is now batting .331. He is batting .400 (12-for-30) with two doubles, one home run and four RBIs during the first eight games of this homestand that concludes Thursday.

“I don’t think this is a fluke at all,” Ventura said. “I think even more of it is the power will come, the doubles and home runs will come. Just his approach and what he’s doing each at-bat, even the first (homer), getting the guy over, he’s doing good stuff when he’s going to the plate. I think it’s winning stuff.”

Beckham’s production has Ventura considering a shuffling of the lineup that could elevate Beckham from the eighth spot in the batting order.

“I think Alexei (Ramirez) is doing a good job, too,” Ventura said of his No. 2 hitter. “It’s one of those where guys will start moving around. With Paulie (Konerko) out, there are chances to move guys around.”

Meanwhile, left-hander Hector Santiago responded to a wake-up call after putting the first three batters on back and trailing 1-0 that prompted pitching coach Don Cooper to visit the mound and summon reliever Ramon Troncoso to warm up.

Santiago retired the next three batters to complete a 26-pitch first inning and managed to last seven innings and 123 pitches and left with a  2-2 tie.

“There was a time when I threw a pitch and heard another glove popping,” Santiago said. “I was (thinking), ‘who’s that? Man, (Troncoso) is warming up early.’ I just settled down, and got after that. Then I definitely heard that glove pop, I said, ‘all right, throw it down the middle and see what happens.’

“It kind of gets you motivated when you hear that. You don’t want to come out of the game.”

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