CHICAGO -- With Jake Peavy nearing a return to the White Sox rotation, manager Ozzie Guillen is fielding daily questions about his plans for Chicago's rotation. The starting staff has been a team strength in the season's early going, so inquiring minds want to know who is going to be bumped to make room for Peavy.
Guillen says he's not going to worry about it until Peavy is ready to return.
"[I am] just waiting for the days to come up and see what happens," said Guillen. "Right now, I want Jake back. But I don't count on him right away because that's too much to ask."
Peavy is scheduled to make a rehab start for Double-A Birmingham on Monday, when he is expected to throw 90-95 pitches. He'll follow that with an outing for Triple-A Charlotte on Saturday. If all goes well, Peavy will be back by the end of the month.
"We have to take it little by little and be very smart about the situation," said Guillen. "When he comes back, hopefully he doesn't have another setback. That's why we have to treat this thing very carefully."
The club's hope is that after making his rehab starts, Peavy will be able to assume a full-time role in the rotation.
"Obviously we have to be aware [of pitch counts]," said Guillen. "But when he comes back, it means he's gotten like four or five starts in the Minor Leagues. He should be ready, good enough to be what we want."
The White Sox posted the fifth-best starter ERA so far this season entering Sunday's action. Righty Philip Humber is the likely odd-man out when Peavy returns. However, Humber has pitched well, posting a 2.45 ERA over 11 innings in two starts. Pitching coach Don Cooper has floated the idea of using a six-man rotation to keep the group rested during scheduling crunches, but Guillen said that won't be a regular practice.
"No. I would rather have more people in the bullpen than a six-man rotation," said Guillen. "Six-man rotation, not many people do that. Then the six-man rotation goes to seven-man rotation. You never know. But that's pretty tough to do."