CHICAGO -- For the first time in the past week, Paul Konerko finally felt some improvement on Friday with the sore left calf and knee that has bothered him since being hit by a pitch on July 31.
Konerko, who missed the team's next three games and has since been limited to a designated hitter role, said he hopes to return to playing first base by Tuesday, but without being able to test it on the team's off-day on Monday, manager Ozzie Guillen said a more reasonable target is Wednesday.
"I doubt PK's back on Tuesday. I hope he does, but I doubt it because I'm not coming Monday to hit ground balls to him to see how he feels," Guillen said jokingly before adding, "I'm not going to push this kid. I don't want one problem to become another problem. He's giving us enough already the way he is right now and, as a manager, you have to respect that and appreciate that."
As for Saturday, Konerko was in the lineup as the designated hitter, batting third. Entering Saturday's game, he had recorded at least one hit in all nine of his games at DH since injuring the leg, going 11-for-33 with one home run and four RBIs during that time.
"If you can play on it, for my situation I can hit on it -- not really run on it or do anything else -- but for this point in the season and what I can offer, I can get in there and get my four at-bats or five at-bats to try to help the team," Konerko said. "For me, it's not like when I'm 100 percent healthy I'm really out there running around much anyway."