Spacious Safeco may help struggling hitters

Spacious Safeco may help struggling hitters

SEATTLE -- On first glance, Safeco Field might be the worst place for the struggling White Sox offense to play a three-game series.

But the spacious ballpark, commonly known as pitcher-friendly, just might be the cure for the White Sox woes.

"I just look at it as it's probably better for us sometimes to get to places like this because you don't feel like you can freewheel and hit the ball in the air, and think you get something out of it," manager Robin Ventura said before his club pounded out a 7-3 victory Friday. "So you get to a place like this, and you have to hit more things on a line and look a little more down in the zone than maybe you do at a park where you can hit some homers."

"Sometimes it's good for a team to come to a park that's a big park because it kind of takes the power out of the equation and you go up there and do what you should be doing to begin with: Just hitting it hard, and just trying to stay up the middle and hitting balls on a line," first baseman Paul Konerko said.

Konerko is one of the few White Sox players not struggling, as he has opened up the season hitting .340 with nine RBIs and five doubles. Adam Dunn, after hitting two homers and driving in five runs Friday, is hitting .265 with three homers, 12 RBIs and five doubles.

Teammate Alex Rios believes Chicago could add to its doubles totals this weekend, as there are plenty of extra-base hits for the taking at spacious Safeco Field. While the home runs might not come in bunches, he said, there are other qualities that cater to batters, if the park is used correctly.

"You can take a bunch of doubles and triples at the same time, it's not all about homers and power numbers," he said. "You can definitely take a bunch of doubles and triples in this ballpark."

The White Sox hit two homers and two doubles among their eight hits on Friday.