Closer hopeful Jones now throwing

February, 21, 2014
Feb 21
12:20
PM CT
Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
Archive
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Reliever Nate Jones, who was out of action at the start of spring training with a gluteus muscle strain, had a second consecutive day of baseball activity Friday.

Jones, who is one of the lead candidates to take over the vacant closer’s job, progressed to throwing at 120 feet as the White Sox take the cautious approach with an injury the right-hander suffered in preparation for spring training.

With a fastball in the high 90-mph range and a curve ball that was instrumental in turning around his season in 2013, Jones is considered by many to be the lead candidate to take over at closer. Matt Lindstrom, who was used as the closer for the Houston Astros in 2010, is also a prime candidate for the job.

Despite missing the first week of action, during which other pitchers have progressed to throwing live batting practice, Jones does not believe he is far behind his teammates when it comes to preparation for the March 31 season opener.

“Obviously, to see those guys in the batter’s box, see live hitting, I think that’s the most important thing,” Jones said. “I think that’s the most important thing that gets me ready for the season. As long as I see that a couple times, I’ll be good.”

Doug Padilla

Chicago White Sox beat reporter
Doug joined ESPN Chicago in July 2010 and covers the Chicago White Sox for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN Radio 1000.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Chris Sale
WINS ERA SO IP
12 2.17 208 174
OTHER LEADERS
BAJ. Abreu .317
HRJ. Abreu 36
RBIJ. Abreu 107
RA. Ramirez 82
OPSJ. Abreu .964
ERAC. Sale 2.17
SOC. Sale 208