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Konerko exits after being hit by a pitch

Konerko exits after being hit by a pitch

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Konerko exits after being hit by a pitch
CHICAGO -- White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko left Sunday's 5-3 loss to Boston in the top of the fifth inning with what was termed as a bruised left calf, after he was hit by a 95-mph Andrew Miller fastball in the bottom of the fourth. X-rays of the area were negative, and the injury was not deemed to be serious.

Nonetheless, manager Ozzie Guillen is prepared to face CC Sabathia and the Yankees without his captain on Monday.

"I don't expect him to be in the lineup, to be honest with you," Guillen said. "When PK took himself out of the game, it's not a concern, but I know that guy was hurt. So, we've got two lineups for tomorrow just in case he can't play, just in case he's not available."

"It hit me good right on the outside of the left knee," Konerko told reporters after the loss. "There's a nerve there that obviously is irritated. The pain had gone away when I was at first during Carlos [Quentin's] at-bat, but the whole lower part of my leg was not there. No strength and no real feel to it. I couldn't bear weight on it. It was real weak, so that was that."

Staying on the ground in pain for a few minutes, the White Sox captain and offensive leader remained in the game with the White Sox at the plate, after being checked on by Guillen and head athletic trainer Herm Schneider, with his hit-by-pitch loading the bases with one out. But he was replaced in the lineup by Juan Pierre after the fourth-inning rally fizzled.

"When I went to the plate, I've managed him for a little while, I knew this guy can tolerate some pain and tough it out," said Guillen. "When I got back to the dugout, I told JP to get loose because I don't think he's going to make it."

Konerko couldn't put an exact timetable on his return, but believes it will be soon. He compared the weak feeling in his leg to something like hitting your funny bone or your leg falling asleep.

"X-rays are negative, it's fine," said Konerko, who had extensive treatment already done on the injury and plans to test it through pregame swings on Monday. "I'll be back in there tomorrow or within the next couple of days for sure."

With Pierre moving to left, starting left fielder Brent Lillibridge moved to first base. By the time Sunday's game had concluded, the White Sox had moved designated hitter Adam Dunn to first base and lost the DH in the lineup altogether, as Guillen pinch-hit with Omar Vizquel and A.J. Pierzynski during the eighth in an attempt to get something going against the Red Sox bullpen.

Lillibridge has been taking ground balls at first base during early work over the past week. But his appearance on Sunday marked his first career inning played at first base.

"It was fine," said Lillibridge of his first-base debut. "It's just first-step reactions and trying to knock the ball down. Obviously, you're not going to make too many big throws, so it's just catch the ball and you'll be fine.

"I've got it under the belt now, so hopefully, if it ever comes up again, it's not a big deal. But mark it off the list, I guess."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Being Ozzie Guillen, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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