PHOENIX -- Each of starting pitcher Edwin Jackson's two at-bats during Friday's 4-1 loss came as a leadoff hitter, meaning he was able to swing away. Jackson grounded out to shortstop twice, almost beating out a slow roller up the middle to start the sixth.
It's a good feeling for pitchers to take one deep on a rare occasion, as Mark Buehrle, Jake Peavy and Jackson can attest, as well as closer Sergio Santos -- in another baseball life. But the White Sox pitchers' role in the Interleague offense, and possibly key to the pitcher staying in a game, is getting down those bunts when asked.
"Getting your bunts down, that keeps you in the ballgame," said Phil Humber, a one-time National League hurler, who starts Sunday's series finale. "I'm sure [manager] Ozzie [Guillen] is going to watch and see who can and can't do it. That's the difference between being taken out in the fifth or seventh innings.
"As a pitcher, if you get up with a guy on first, or first and second, with less than two out, you are going to bunt --that's the bottom line. It's fun to go out there and swing, but we've all been concentrating really on our bunting, because that's what we are going to be asked to do most of the time."