Avisail headed to Venezuela for winter ball

Right fielder hopes to continue development with more at-bats

Avisail headed to Venezuela for winter ball

CLEVELAND -- The most important factor for Avisail Garcia's return to the White Sox is that he actually came back from what was deemed a season-ending torn labrum and avulsion fracture in his left shoulder. He feels strong and healthy, playing almost daily in a comeback covering 74 plate appearances entering Saturday night's contest against the Indians.

Garcia and the White Sox also understand that his 108 plate appearances are much fewer than they planned for their 23-year-old starting right fielder. So Garcia will continue working on his craft by playing winter ball in Venezuela during the offseason.

"I need to play a little bit more, get a little bit more at-bats," Garcia said. "It's going to be good to finish off the season. The most important thing is to be healthy and play hard every day to help this team win. That's the only thing that matters. That's my focus right now."

Since his return to the lineup, Garcia has 15 hits in 67 at-bats, with two homers, seven doubles and 12 RBIs. Per baseballreference.com, Garcia is 7-for-37 against what it deems power or average power pitchers and 16-for-60 against finesse pitchers. Having these extra at-bats becomes important for Garcia and also can help him refine his approach.

"One hundred percent good thing, absolutely," said White Sox hitting coach Todd Steverson of Garcia playing winter ball. "More at-bats are necessary with him.

"But I've said time and time again, he's young. He's eager. He's got to reel in his discipline and recognition of pitches. Really just start to understand his approach, consistently being able to put that on the table every day."

Third to first

• Reliever Jake Petricka is not in Cleveland, as he returned home to be with his wife, Ellen, for the birth of their first daughter. Petricka is expected to join the White Sox Monday back in Chicago.

• Manager Robin Ventura doesn't seem inclined to go to a six-man rotation for the final 21 games of the '14 season. He is leaning toward plugging Chris Bassitt into the rotation Wednesday, giving Chris Sale and Jose Quintana an extra day of rest.

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.