John Danks headed to DL

Updated: March 20, 2013, 9:05 PM ET
By Bruce Levine | ESPNChicago.com

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Chicago White Sox pitcher John Danks likely will start the season on the disabled list as he tries to come back from shoulder surgery, manager Robin Ventura said Wednesday.

"At this point, I don't see him making the Opening Day roster," Ventura said. "He is going to pitch in some minor league games to try and get his velocity back and see how it goes. The best thing for John is to pitch in some minor league games, get strong and probably start on the DL."

Danks was shelled for 10 runs in 3 1/3 innings Tuesday against the Cincinnati Reds. He has allowed 21 runs in 10 innings this spring. The 27-year-old Danks topped out at 87 mph, down from his normal 92 mph fastball.

"If for some reason he can get it all back in seven days (he can make it), but that is probably not going to happen," Ventura said. "I think what is best for him is to (go on the DL). We want him to feel right when he is out there. Right now, there is not enough difference between his fastball and changeup speed."

The left-hander, who missed most of the 2012 season after a shoulder injury that required an arthroscopic procedure in August, said Wednesday morning he is willing to do whatever is needed to get back to the major league roster.

"It is not about me," Danks said. "This is a team game, and obviously we are here to win ballgames, no matter who is doing it. I would like to be there, but I will certainly understand if they want me to wait a little bit and someone else is throwing better a little bit in April."

For now Ventura said Dylan Axelrod will take Danks' spot in the rotation.

The White Sox changed the pitching schedules of Axelrod and Hector Santiago to set them up for the possible fifth start of the season April 6. Ventura said Tuesday that he wants a rotation of five starters to begin the season, even with two off days in the first eight days of the new campaign.

Pitching coach Don Cooper is pleased with Danks' health and work ethic.

"We knew that there would be some ups and downs, and obviously he is having that right now," Cooper said. "Listen, man, there is much good news. One, he is participating. Two, he is climbing and I see improvement. We have three starts (in the spring) for that to continue to improve. (Tuesday's) start did not work out so we continue to get him ready for the next one."

Danks signed a five-year, $65 million contract in fall 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.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.


ALSO SEE