Thornton to keep mixing it up on mound

Thornton to keep mixing it up on mound

CHICAGO -- Matt Thornton entered Friday's victory and threw four fastballs, including one to Miguel Cabrera, inducing a slickly-turned double play by Alexei Ramirez and Gordon Beckham. But when he returned on Saturday, Thornton used eight fastballs in the mid-90s and mixed in three sliders during that scoreless appearance.

The hard-throwing left-hander ended his outing, and the White Sox victory, with an 80 mph slider to get a weakly-hit Brandon Inge comebacker, following a 97 mph fastball the pitch before. Thornton has relied on his high-octane fastball since joining the White Sox, but started working last season on employing the offspeed pitches as well.

"It's something I worked on a lot in Spring Training and I don't want to lose touch," said Thornton, who made his seventh consecutive scoreless appearance in Monday's 10-4 loss to the Orioles in 10 innings. "The situation dictates what I'm going to do.

"Obviously my primary pitch is my fastball, and I'm throwing offspeed pitches to keep hitters off balance. We get that in our reports. Use it for ground balls and early outs."