ST. LOUIS -- The upbeat attitude John Danks has been exhibiting during the latter days of his stint on the disabled list took a bit of a hit Thursday when he felt slightly abnormal soreness in his left shoulder.
"It's kind of discouraging, but it's kind of expected," the White Sox right-hander said. "Hopefully I feel well enough to throw a side tomorrow."
Danks was placed on the disabled list retroactive to May 20 with a left shoulder strain. He had worked far enough back in the process to where he hurled four innings and 61 pitches during a rehab start for Triple-A Charlotte Tuesday in Columbus. When he felt fine after playing catch on Wednesday, a return to the rotation against the Cubs at home at the start of next week truly seemed possible.
This latest bout of soreness could be a setback. Danks and the White Sox won't know until he throws that scheduled bullpen session before Friday's series opener in Los Angeles.
"I'd imagine if I can't throw a side, then who knows," Danks said. "I don't know what their plan is anyway at this point. I'm worrying about throwing a side now."
"Everybody has that soreness, but he's the one who knows whether it's that good one or it's the same thing creeping back up again," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura. "He won't pitch if it's one of those where he feels like he did before."
Much of this soreness was expected after Danks amped up his rehab a bit when facing hitters in a game situation for the first time since his last start May 19 at Wrigley Field. Danks compared the feeling to Spring Training, where a pitcher gets that first wave of soreness and works through it.
There was a little soreness for Danks after his first side session during this rehab. Friday's throwing session will let Danks know if he also can work through this round.
"Obviously I didn't expect to feel quite this sore," Danks said. "I've never had this before, so I really didn't know what to expect. I was just hoping I would bounce back a little better than I have. It's part of it. You kind of go without throwing, and it's going to be sore."