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This is Oakland, right?

  • Jose Contreras put to rest any injury concerns with 6 innings of 1-run baseball in Oakland Monday night. He still looked a little bit too much like the Yankees' Contreras for my liking, but he kept the Sox in a game against one of the best starters in the AL.
  • When Don Cooper visited the mound in the third inning, I tried to imagine him speaking in nothing but Dr. Philisms. It went something like this: "Jose. Does a pig have to think about rollin' in the mud? No. He just rolls. You're a pitcher. Pitch. Oink."
  • Who knew that when many of us were clamoring for Brian Anderson to get into the lineup that it should have been in place of Jermaine Dye? Scott Podsednik, when he hasn't been making himself look stupid getting thrown out by Victor Martinez, has been otherwise about as good as we can expect him to be, and Darrin Erstad, aside from his brutal first two at-bats against Rich Harden, has been every bit the grinder we were sold in spring training. Meanwhile, Dye has looked practically clueless at the plate.
  • Jack McDowell, filling in for Hawk who was attending a 1967 Red Sox reunion, really highlights the lack of insight that Darrin Jackson brings to the broadcast booth by being incredibly insightful and occasionally critical of the teams on the field. I used to enjoy watching Cubs games because of how much you learned by simply listening to Steve Stone comment on the game at hand. I get the feeling that I'd tune in to hear Black Jack's comments even if he wasn't broadcasting the Sox.
  • The two insurance runs the Sox added in the 8th inning came against former Sox farmhand Jay Marshall, who was claimed by Oakland in the Rule 5 draft. Marshall was the second lefty in as many seasons claimed from the lower levels of the Sox system who appears like he'll be able to stick at the major league level. Marshall, Fabio Castro, and Boone Logan were all names that hardly anyone knew 14 months ago. Now they're all fringe major leaguers.

    On one hand, it shows the White Sox ability to turn a run-of-the-mill minor league left-hander into something useful; on the other, the only thing the Sox have to show for their two converted sidearmers is Boone Logan's potential.

  • Mark Buehrle will make his scheduled start on Wednesday in Oakland. I'd expect the Sox to hold Masset out of tomorrow's game just to be sure Buehrle is 100%.
  • Toby Hall is recovering well, reportedly playing catch without any pain on Monday. It was the first time since the injury that he's done any activity that required him to raise his arm above his shoulder. Baby steps.
  • Monday was also a day to feel a little better about the Sox chances in the central. I know one outing doesn't mean a whole lot over the long haul of a season, but serial underwhelmers Chad Durbin and Sindey Ponson did nothing to change my pre-season non-compliment that Fausto Carmona was the best 5th starter in the Central division. The next time you see the Twins juggle their rotation so the Sox avoid Sir Sid, you'll know why.