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Danks feels good after second bullpen session


GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The actual velocity or location of John Danks' pitches during his second bullpen, taking place Sunday morning at Camelback Ranch, wasn't the most important factor resulting from another successful session.

It was the fact that Danks was able to bounce back from Thursday's first session without any pain that separates his post arthroscopic surgery work from his painful pre-surgical struggles last year.

"I think that's a big sign that I was able to get out there and feel good again," the upbeat Danks said following his 15-minute bullpen. "That makes me feel a lot better about things. We'll see how it feels in a couple days. It's exciting. I'm still making progress, which is a good sign."

"He felt better the further he went along, so that's good news," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura. "Everything is on schedule and he feels great. You just monitor that every time he goes out. All these little steps are better along the way."

Danks' Spring Training schedule has two days off in between trips to the mound, which means he'll be back to work on Wednesday for live batting practice. Three live batting practices are on tap for Danks before another bullpen on March 1 and his first Cactus League start on March 4 against the Giants.

Although it will be a controlled environment, Danks will be facing hitters Wednesday for the first time since May 19 when he beat the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Danks has been told by the White Sox that he's on target to break camp with the team, if that's a path the organization follows at the season's outset, but he's just focused on preparing like any other starting pitcher.

"I'm throwing what everyone else is throwing. It's not much different than what I'd be throwing if I was completely healthy," Danks said. "I'm trying to get it there and make the ball do some things and definitely want to pop the glove.

"At the same time, I'm not trying to throw 93 mph, either," added Danks, who threw more breaking balls in his second bullpen. "It's intense. I'm getting work in, but it isn't game speed. The next step will be to see how hitters react to it and what they're thinking, so I'm anxious to get some feedback from those guys."

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