Notes: No pain, big gain for Jenks
Closer feels good after outing; Hermanson on DL
ATLANTA -- Bobby Jenks was feeling no pain as he walked around the clubhouse Saturday morning prior to the team's Spring Training finale. That's the best news that the club could have gotten following his scoreless eighth inning Friday night, appearing in his second consecutive game.
"Last night, I felt really good coming into the game," said Jenks, who threw 16 pitches, 11 for strikes. "I know I'm on the right track because my body doesn't hurt today after going back-to-back for the first time, which means that everything is in the right place when I'm throwing. So that's a good sign."
After his callup on July 6, Jenks converted six of eight save opportunities and was 4-for-5 in the postseason, including saves in Games 1 and 4 of the World Series. His only blown saves came on the back end of appearances on successive days.
25 to life: Jim Thome is red-hot heading into Opening Day.
Thome, acquired in the Nov. 25 trade with Philadelphia for outfielder Aaron Rowand and Minor League pitchers Gio Gonzalez and Daniel Haigwood, finished the spring hitting .386, with a team-leading eight homers and team-high 15 RBIs (Jermaine Dye also had 15).
He also has found his power stroke as Thome hit all eight homers and drove in 12 runs, while hitting at a .464 clip (13-for-28).
He continued his torrid hitting in the first-inning Saturday afternoon, blasting a 1-2 pitch from Atlanta starter Jorge Sosa into the seats in left-center field. It was his second homer in as many at-bats, as he homered in the ninth inning Friday night, driving in the game-winning run.
Thome's eight spring homers matched a White Sox Spring Training record set in 2000 by Magglio Ordonez.
On deck: The White Sox open the defense of their 2005 World Series title on Sunday night at U.S. Cellular Field in a nationally televised game with American League Central rival Cleveland. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. CT. Left-hander Mark Buehrle (16-8, 3.12 ERA) gets the ball for the Sox. Cleveland will counter with lefty C.C. Sabathia (15-10, 4.03).
Jon Cooper is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.