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Santiago considers himself White Sox 'changeup guy'

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NEW YORK -- How was Hector Santiago able to throw seven scoreless innings and strike out eight during Tuesday's starting effort in front of countless friends and family? The left-hander looked to his changeup for the answer.

"My changeup was probably the game-saver," said Santiago, who threw 27 changeups in the no-decision, according to MLB Gameday. "I couldn't get ahead with the fastball. So I relied on the changeup, whether it was 2-0 or 2-1, to get us back even.

"I threw it to lefties. I threw it in 3-2 counts. I threw it the entire time all game and it was a big pitch."

Santiago had the chance to meet up with 60 or 70 friends and family members after the game Tuesday and was moved by the in-game support he received from the group. Even with John Danks looking like he could return to the rotation in the next few weeks, there will be chances for Santiago's support crew to watch him as a starter.

In fact, Santiago believes a rotation with four southpaws could not only co-exist but be successful for the White Sox.

"For the most part, everybody is different," Santiago said. "[Chris] Sale is a slider guy, I'm a changeup guy, [Jose] Quintana is a cutter guy. Danks coming back, you don't know what to expect from him.

"I'm pretty sure, from what I heard, his change is pretty good and he's locating his fastball. Everybody has their own ways. It's just like you don't think about it as four lefties. We do, and the opposing team is probably going to stack up their guys with righties. Everybody can get guys out, whether it's a lefty or a righty."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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