Each piece of rotation offers unique challenge

Each piece of rotation offers unique challenge

Each piece of rotation offers unique challenge
TORONTO -- With five guys in the rotation that have the ability to dominate a given game, A.J. Pierzynski is having a lot of fun behind the plate these days.

The White Sox staff, which features Jake Peavy, Chris Sale, Gavin Floyd, Francisco Liriano and Jose Quintana, is one of the biggest strengths of the club.

Peavy, after battling injuries over the past couple seasons, was a little bit of a question mark heading into 2012, but Pierzynski said all the right-hander needed to do was get fully healthy.

Pierzynski has caught Peavy since the White Sox acquired him from the Padres in 2009 and said his stuff has never looked better.

"Not only is his stuff better but he just believes that it is going to have better results because he is healthy for the first time since he has been here," Pierzynski said. "He expects to be good and now that he is healthy, he is doing it again."

Sale, meanwhile, in his first crack as a starter at the big league level, has morphed into one of the premier pitchers in the game.

The lanky left-hander, who has three pitches he can consistently throw for strikes in his changeup, fastball and slider, has thoroughly impressed Pierzynski. But that doesn't mean he's surprised with what Sale's been able to do on the mound.

"That makes it tough, especially with a guy that is left-handed with a funky arm angle and funky motion," Pierzynski said about Sale's ability to pound the zone.

Pierzynski said the club always had faith that Sale could make the transition from the bullpen because of his success as a starter in college.

"We always knew that he was going to be tough if he was given the opportunity to start. The results have been amazing," Pierzynski said.

He also welcomes the addition of Liriano, someone he did not enjoy facing when the lefty was a member of the Twins.

"It is nice to have him and not face him, especially as a left-handed hitter trying to hit his slider," Pierzynski said. "He is one of those that can be as good as anybody. It's nice to have him on our team, just because of what kind of guy he is and so we don't have to face him."