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Anderson to open season with Sox

Anderson to open season with White Sox

TEMPE, Ariz. -- There was no major celebration planned by Brian Anderson for Tuesday night after he received the official news from Ozzie Guillen that he would break camp as part of the White Sox 25-man roster.

Actually, the 25-year-old Anderson, usually full of bravado, didn't really know how to react after being named as the team's fourth outfielder.

"I'm not really ... I don't know what to call it," said Anderson by phone, after knocking out one hit in two at-bats during the Angels' 12-2 shellacking of the White Sox at Diablo Stadium. "I'm not really pumped up about the situation I'm in, but I'm happy to be on the team. I'm happy to be wearing the White Sox uniform and I'm happy to be with my teammates, doing whatever I can to help our team win.

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"But I'm disappointed I'm not starting, and I want to win that job back," Anderson added.

Guillen made it clear that Darin Erstad would be his starting center fielder, with Scott Podsednik having recovered ahead of schedule from late January sports hernia surgery to lead off for the White Sox potent attack and play left field. That combination leaves Anderson in a utility role, giving Erstad a break from time-to-time, starting against a tough left-handed pitcher or coming in late as a defensive replacement.

It was Anderson's status as the best defensive outfielder on the roster that helped him survive Tuesday's postgame cuts. Even while struggling through a rookie season in which he hit .225 and narrowly escaped being sent down on a couple of occasions, Anderson still maintained a strong presence in center.

Talk of that defensive presence again returned Anderson to thoughts of a competitive drive for a starting job.

"That's one thing I've always taken pride in. I love playing defense and I love playing center field," Anderson said. "If I have to play left field or right field from time to time, so be it. But center field is my natural position and I do a good job of playing it."

"[Anderson] is truly center field and that's what we really need," Guillen added. "That's why we kept him."

Roster survival for Anderson meant a temporary end of the line for outfielder Luis Terrero, who was outrighted to Triple-A Charlotte after Tuesday's loss, and first baseman Eduardo Perez, who was released from his Minor League contract. Guillen praised the way Terrero played during Spring Training and continued to express his admiration for the veteran Perez.

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In fact, Guillen explained how the White Sox tried to make trades to open a spot for Perez, but nothing ever materialized. Guillen also believed that Perez should look for a big-league job, with the option open of coming back to the White Sox system if nothing else works. "Believe me, if we had any spot for him -- we tried all kinds of stuff. He knows it. We made him aware we're going to try do it -- if this thing doesn't work, this thing doesn't work. Well, nothing worked."

Right-handed reliever Ryan Bukvich and catcher Wiki Gonzalez were reassigned to Minor-League camp, with Gustavo Molina being added to Major League camp as the team's new backup catcher. The active roster sits at 28, with Toby Hall to be placed on the disabled list, meaning the White Sox have four pitchers competing for final two relief spots.

That decision between Gavin Floyd, Andrew Sisco, Boone Logan and David Aardsma was set to be made on Tuesday, according to Guillen. But Floyd, Sisco and Logan all struggled during the team's rough effort against the Angels.

Floyd started and allowed four runs on six hits over three innings, still having trouble getting ahead of hitters. Logan continued his spotless spring now covering 11 innings, but walked two hitters during his relief work. Sisco yielded four runs on two hits in one-third of an inning.

Judging by Guillen's comments, Floyd appears to be headed to Charlotte as a starting pitcher. Guillen still wanted to wait until Wednesday, though, to make the final call in a calmer state.

"We should have made the decision on the last cuts today, but I was not too happy with the way Sisco and Boone threw the ball," Guillen said. "That's what we're going to decide tomorrow. "I didn't want to make a decision because I was mad or whatever. I had [assistant general manager] Rick [Hahn] call [general manager] Kenny [Williams] and tell him that I didn't want to make the last cuts today. I want to talk to everyone tomorrow morning."

Anderson will not be one of those players waiting on Guillen's final decision. He earned his way on to the roster, knowing he would not be given anything after his dismal rookie season.

Now that Anderson has made the team, he has a full comprehension of his role as a reserve. Anderson also seems to have bigger goals for himself set for the very near future.

"Darin is a great player. If he's healthy and hitting, there's no reason to make a move," Anderson said. "I have to produce and just play. I don't think I'm competing with Darin or any other guys. I'm competing with myself. I have all the tools, but I just need to put it all together.

"It's not an at-bats thing with me. It's a confidence thing. There are guys out there in baseball with [bad] swings and horrible mechanics, but they are arrogant and cocky and play and produce. It's an attitude thing with me. I lost that swagger last year and I think I got that back now."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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