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Richar feels good after testing back

Richar feels good after testing back

TUSCON, Ariz. -- With a mere two Cactus League games and five at-bats under his belt this spring, Danny Richar seems to be a long shot to break camp with the White Sox.

But after testing his sore back by playing all nine innings against Colorado during a Saturday morning "B" game, Richar wouldn't rule out the chances of hanging on to his starting second base job.

"Baseball, you never know what will happen," said Richar with a smile after going hitless in four at-bats at Hi Corbett Field. "I'm just going to try to work my way back, keep working and play at 100 percent to show I'm ready."

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Richar mentioned last Sunday how his back was once bothersome enough this spring that he couldn't sleep or move without pain. As of Saturday afternoon, the back felt a little tight but wasn't an issue.

Jerry Owens also returned to action for the first time since Tuesday's Cactus League game against the Rangers in Surprise, finishing 1-for-3 with a double and run scored. Owens showed no ill effects from a sore right groin, crossing the plate in the first inning on a delayed sacrifice fly to the shortstop.

The Colorado shortstop put his head down to run the ball in, and Owens came home safely. Carlos Quentin added two hits, but shortstop Pablo Ozuna had just one at-bat before leaving with breathing difficulties stemming from a bout with the flu.

Aaron Poreda, the team's top pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, continued to impress with three scoreless innings in relief. The big left-hander yielded two hits and fanned five, including Todd Helton looking.

Even with this plethora of highlights, Richar's appearance might have been the most significant of the morning. Juan Uribe continues to play impressive defense at second, and Alexei Ramirez has turned a few heads with his athleticism and raw baseball skills.

In order to get back into the second base picture, Richar needs to get back into a regular flow over the final two weeks and work on getting his timing back at the plate and in the field.

"My timing will be the key," Richar said. "But I feel like I can compete. I feel right now like Danny Richar."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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