MINNEAPOLIS -- Adam Dunn was in the White Sox lineup on Saturday for the first time since Sept. 5.
Manager Robin Ventura started Dunn at first base and slotted him third in the batting order. Dunn took batting practice on Friday for the first time since aggravating a strained right oblique, and all signs pointed to him being ready to return.
"We're going to unleash him today," Ventura said before his club's 5-3 win. "He's been let out of the training room, so we're going to get him in there. It's better for him to stay loose, play first base. He looked good yesterday. That's just one of the things he needed to go through, BP."
Dunn, who went 2-for-3 with a double, a walk and a run scored, missed the team's past seven games and nine of 12. He is hitting .211 with 38 home runs and 88 RBIs in 134 games -- a year after posting his worst batting average (.159) and the second-lowest home run total of his career (11).
Ventura watched for warning signs of discomfort during Friday's batting practice, primarily to make sure Dunn wasn't brought back too quickly. The White Sox made that mistake earlier this month with Dunn.
"Looking for a reaction when he swings -- if he winces or anything," Ventura said. "Looking back to what it was before, there probably was a sign or two that it wasn't 100 percent. He looks fine though. He didn't have any reservations about swinging."
Check swings and missed swings are two things that Ventura might be a little anxious to see with his slugger, as both can aggravate the injury.
"Regular swings [are] not [a concern]," Ventura said. "But swing and miss -- which he can do. Check swings are probably going to be the biggest thing."