Ventura on up-and-down Sox: 'That's baseball'

After 23-10 start, club went 10-23 over next 33 games

Ventura on up-and-down Sox: 'That's baseball'

CLEVELAND -- The White Sox opened the season with 23 wins in 33 games and appeared to be a favorite in the American League Central, at least based upon judgments made May 9.

They entered Friday in a 10-23 stretch over their past 33 games, dropping them to fourth in a bunch with the Indians, Royals and Tigers competing for the division crown. So the question for the next 33, which began Friday night with a 3-2 loss to the first-place Indians at Progressive Field, is will the real White Sox please step forward?

If nothing else, the White Sox can acknowledge the bizarre but almost exact reversal of fortune over the first 2 1/2 months.

"That's baseball," manager Robin Ventura said before Friday's game. "It becomes hard. It becomes hard to win one game at times. You have to be able to tough it out and still keep your wits about you. Even the competitive part. You can get beaten down to where coming to the ballpark is hard. These guys have done a good job coming to the ballpark, preparing and feeling like you're going to win a game."

"We just can't explain it," third baseman Todd Frazier said. "When you're struggling, something just clicks and it's just weird. It's tough to explain. Just keep on winning, keep on rolling."

There wasn't much talk about the job being done by Ventura when the team jumped out to the great start and built a six-game lead. As is the fickle nature of sports, there has been greater public discussion concerning Ventura's status as the team has faltered.

But much like he did as a player, Ventura tries to stick with the one-game-at-a-time approach.

"I just go. You can sit back and do all that, but I'm just going day to day and trying to get us to win that day," Ventura said. "I don't think you can sit there and feel like you measure it.

"Some guys will sit there and look at their statistics for a week, but you try to win that day. You prepare and do what you need to do that day and the next day you have to figure out, you come in the clubhouse, you look at your players and figure out what the needs are and you go for that."

Successful surgeries

Center fielder Austin Jackson underwent surgery Wednesday in Los Angeles to debride and remove a small part of the medial meniscus in his left knee. Jackson will be on crutches for two weeks and reexamined in four weeks.

Right-handers Jake Petricka (torn labrum in his right hip) and Daniel Webb (Tommy John) underwent surgeries June 10 and are out for the season. Petricka had his labrum repaired and debrided during a procedure in Denver, while Webb's ulnar collateral ligament was repaired in Cincinnati.

Roster moves

Outfielder/infielder Jerry Sands was outrighted to Triple-A Charlotte. Sands was designated for assignment June 7. The White Sox requested waivers on right-hander Mat Latos for the purpose of granting his unconditional release, after Latos was designated June 9.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.