KANSAS CITY -- Jim Thome was absent from the White Sox starting lineup Monday night at Kauffman Stadium, despite his .444 career average and one home run against Kansas City starter Runelvys Hernandez.
But this particular break in the action had nothing to do with giving Thome a second straight well-deserved day off or Paul Konerko's continued recovery from a left shin bruise suffered during Friday's game. Instead, it was Thome tending to his own minor physical malady, as he was sent back to Chicago on Sunday to have his sore right wrist examined.
White Sox athletic trainer Herm Schneider said that Thome's problem is not in the joint or bone related, and that Thome missed Monday's series opener with the Royals because he had taken a cortisone shot in the problem area.
"It's just tendinitis, a lot of swinging, that's all," said Schneider of Thome. "It's not a big deal.
"He'll be in there [Tuesday], probably," Schneider added.
Schneider mentioned that the flare up of tendinitis has been bothering Thome for about one week and "conservative stuff hasn't been able to get at it."
Ross Gload replaced Thome, hitting sixth, with A.J. Pierzynski hitting third in the lineup for the second straight day.
Gload made his third straight start at first base and appeared in his fourth straight game, after taking over for Konerko in the sixth inning of Friday's contest at Camden Yards. White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen wasn't sure who would start on Tuesday, with left-hander Odalis Perez getting the call for the Royals, and had not ruled out Thome, if he was healthy enough to return.
The White Sox clearly miss Thome's power presence, with his 33 home runs and 82 RBIs leading the team. They also benefit from his sharp batting eye, having walked 66 times and scored 79 runs.
In Guillen's mind, though, there's no need to rush Thome back in the short term and risk losing him for a couple of weeks.
"When you have Thome in the lineup, it's a lot different," Guillen said. "But we have people here who can replace him for a couple days. To me, I'm not in a hurry. I'd rather lose him for a couple days than months.
"He's got this problem for a little while. He didn't want to be on the bench [Sunday]. But it's fair for us to get him a couple days rest and don't try to hurry. I don't worry about him. I think he's been dealing with this for a while."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.