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Sunday, April 21, 2013
John Danks in Chicago to talk rehab

By Bruce Levine
ESPNChicago.com

CHICAGO -- White Sox starting pitcher John Danks returned to the team from extended spring training and will be evaluated over the next week.

Danks, who had shoulder surgery in August 2012, has been pitching against minor league players at the White Sox spring training complex in Glendale, Ariz., since the team broke camp on March 28. In his latest outing on Saturday, Danks pitched six innings, with his fastball consistently maintaining velocity levels of 88 mph.

"I am better than I was the last time I was here [two weeks ago]," Danks said on Sunday. "I am seeing improvements each time out. I am ready to get out of Arizona."

Danks will consult with pitching coach Don Cooper, manager Robin Ventura and general manager Rick Hahn on Monday about the next step in his rehab process. The logical move would be a rehab assignment with one of the team's minor league affiliates.

"I don't want to come back until I know I can help the team," Danks said. "It would be selfish of me to go out there because I am physically able to do it. I don't feel like I am real far off. As I have said all along, it's not my decision to make. I will just go out and keep pitching, sooner or later I will be back."

Danks will throw a side session for White Sox brass this week before a determination is made.

"I think that is what our meeting is for," he said. "We just need to get everyone on the same page and find out where we all stand."

Rebuilding his arm strength has been a tedious process for Danks.

"I think if I can pitch between 88 mph and 91 mph, which is close to where I was, I can be effective. I am optimistic I will be back before too long, and hopefully effective."

Added Ventura: "There are a lot of things we want to see from John, including velocity. Being healthy all the way through is No. 1."

The White Sox signed Danks to a five-year, $65 million contract before the 2012 season, which ended for Danks when he injured his shoulder on May 19.