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Bouncing Back by the Bay

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When you pick up your morning paper later today, you'll probably be greeted with stories crafted around the idea that the White Sox needed to bounce back from the brutal loss Thursday at the hands of the Orioles. I'm wasn't exactly concerned about how they bounced back.

This team is playing very well right now. Since last Saturday, they've lost two games, each by a run. The first came at the hands of a lefty making his second career start, and the second being the aforementioned bullpen meltdown in Baltimore. During that stretch they've also shutout Detroit, twice, and allowed more than 2 runs just once.

There's a feeling about this club that they can -- nay, should -- win every time they take the field. And when you've got a team going like that, you don't worry about how you'll respond to a tough loss; you can't wait to get back on the field and get back in the W column.

I was not at all surprised to see Javier Vazquez and the offense right back at it, doing exactly what they've been doing all season. Vazquez was able to pitch over a terrible HBP call and a poor defensive decision by Pablo Ozuna in the second and was quickly rewarded. The offense put together two big innings on the strength of back-to-back Jim Thome and Paul Konerko homers in the 3rd inning and took advantage of an Evan Longoria throwing error to get things started in the 4th. It was a laugher before the game even reached the half-way mark, giving Ozzie the opportunity to play the back-end of the bench.

* * * * *

Jerry Owens officially came off the DL and was promptly optioned to Charlotte, where he was on rehab assignment. This is a clear sign that the Sox are happy with their current 25-man roster. Who can blame them when they're leading the AL Central with a 10-6 record, and playing this well? But I'd actually like to see Owens on the roster.

Owens is never going to be anything more than a 4th or 5th outfielder on a good team, while Alexei Ramirez might be able to hold down a starting role on a good team in the near future. I could see keeping Alexei around if he was getting some starts on the infield, but Juan Uribe has started all but one game at second, and Ozuna appears to be the primary backup on the infield. With the emergence of Carlos Quentin, who has been the left field starter every game since game 2, there just aren't enough at-bats to go around. I'd rather those at-bats not be given to Owens than Ramirez, who could clearly use some more development time.