Peavy: Sox need to win to earn respect

April, 3, 2013
4/03/13
5:47
PM CT
Levine By Bruce Levine
ESPNChicago.com
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Jake PeavyBrian Kersey/Getty ImagesJake Peavy threw six strong innings in picking up the win on Wednesday.
CHICAGO -- Jake Peavy believes the only way the White Sox will receive national recognition is if they win their division.

After leading the American League Central for 117 days last season the Sox blew a late-September, three-game lead to Detroit, losing 11 of their last 15.

"I don't think any of us are concerned about it," Peavy said Wednesday. "I guess you get respect when you go out and earn respect. At the end of the day what we did last year doesn't warrant respect. We did not get it done. We had a chance to get it done but you get respect when you do what Detroit did.

"When we do what they did by winning in the playoffs we will get respect nationally. I am fine with that."

The White Sox starter pitched six strong innings in a 5-2 win Wednesday.

"Stuff wise today I wasn't great " he said. "My location was good and you have to keep those guys off balance. You have to change things up and see what works. It was a nice win for us."

Peavy is pitching without any health question marks for the first time since 2007. He had a star-crossed season in 2012, going 11-12 with a 3.37 ERA while finishing in the top ten of four important pitching categories. He is confident last year's failure can be a jumping off point for the 2013 squad.

"This bunch believes in each other," he said. "It starts with Rick Hahn and Robin (Ventura ). This is a very cohesive unit and it has really come together in the last few years. I think if you watched us last season you would see a lot of the caring for each other. We have each other's back, that is obvious. It would be nice to have a little luck this year. Getting five runs in a start was a beautiful thing. Hopefully that trend continues."

Peavy has great respect for all of the division opponents, including the team he faced on Wednesday.

"Kansas City is an outstanding team from top to bottom," he said. "When you add veteran pitchers like (James) Shields, (Wade Davis and (Ervin) Santana to that great bunch of bullpen arms and offense, you have to take that seriously. We understand we have to play better against Kansas City to be the team we want to be."

The White Sox lost 12 of 18 against the Royals and Tigers in 2012.The team is off to a 2-0 start for the third time in the last nine seasons and first time since 2011.

Bruce Levine | email

Chicago baseball beat reporter
Bruce Levine has covered sports in Chicago for over 28 years and hosts "Talkin' Baseball," heard Saturday mornings on ESPN 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Jose Abreu
BA HR RBI R
.292 29 74 51
OTHER LEADERS
HRJ. Abreu 29
RBIJ. Abreu 74
RJ. Abreu 51
OPSJ. Abreu .961
WC. Sale 9
ERAC. Sale 2.03
SOJ. Quintana 115