The White Sox are predictably preoccupied with trying to catch the first-place Detroit Tigers in the AL Central.
But the Sox are keeping an eye on starting pitcher Jake Peavy, who made his second rehab start with Class AAA Charlotte on Tuesday night and wasn't encouraged after pitching 4 innings against Durham and allowing 4 runs (3 earned) on 5 hits in 4 innings.
Ideally, Peavy would have made one more start with Charlotte and debuted with the White Sox on Aug. 28 at New York.
Now it looks like Sept. 2, at Minnesota, is the goal. Peavy is going to pitch two more games, maybe more, for Charlotte.
"Right now, he seems like he's par for the course," Sox pitching coach Don Cooper said. "He's feeling good and trying to turn up the intensity. He doesn't feel the command and the intensity are meeting. That's kind of to be expected."
The White Sox could really use Peavy, who won the 2007 NL Cy Young Award with the San Diego Padres, but they're not going to push a guy who's been on the disabled list since June 9 with a strained tendon in his right ankle.
"I don't care who you are or how good you are at anything you do," Cooper said. "You take the amount of time he took off, it's going to take a little while to get it back. I'm not sitting here biting my nails and waiting for him because we are going to do this right.
"Whether he comes back on the 30th (of August) or the third or the eighth (of September), I sit here right now and I'm going to let that unfold. He's going to give us much of the answers."
Peavy was at U.S. Cellular Field on Wednesday and he spoke to the media after the Sox beat the Royals.
The 28-year-old pitcher doesn't even want to guess on a return date.
"Obviously, this is unchartered territory for anybody," Peavy said. "Nobody just comes off from not doing anything and tries to jump on a mound and pitch. I've got to be smart about it, but I certainly want to be out there as soon as I can."
"I think the time when I go out and am able to get six to seven innings under my belt, feeling good, knowing I'm able to execute a pitch in the seventh as well as I can do it in the first, and throw the ball where I want to at 100 percent," Peavy said. "I think when I see that day, we're going to go from there."
Blame game: White Sox third-base coach Jeff Cox was still taking heat Wednesday for having Carlos Quentin tag up and try to score in the fifth inning of Tuesday night's 5-4 loss to the Royals.
Right fielder Willie Bloomquist, formerly a utility infielder, easily threw out Quentin, but Sox manager Ozzie Guillen wasn't blaming Cox.
"I think he's doing a good job," Guillen said. "Some people don't like what they saw. Yesterday, Bloomquist was playing the outfield. I'm going to take that chance. He's not an outfielder. If he was safe, it's a good job. If he was out, what are you doing? That's part of the gig."
Thome out again: Designated hitter Jim Thome missed his third straight game with a sore left heel Wednesday, but he's expected to be ready to play against Baltimore on Friday night.