Competition for closer role with White Sox

Competition for closer role with White Sox

CHICAGO -- Nate Jones appears to be the clubhouse leader to take over for Addison Reed at closer. But it's right-handed setup man Matt Lindstrom, with his 45 career saves, who provided the best description for the pressure involved with ninth-inning work.

"There's nobody behind you," Lindstrom said. "You're not handing the ball off to anybody else: it's you, you're going to shut it down. You're not going to win the game for us, but you're going to make sure we win the game. And there is some pressure involved with that."

Lindstrom added that with his stuff and Jones' stuff, as long as they keep confident on the mound, they have the ability to get hitters out with one pitch.

"Even facing Miguel Cabrera, you make a good pitch right now and he'll probably ground into a double play," Lindstrom said. "That's what I try to do, I try to think positively, and usually it works out."

When pitching coach Don Cooper was asked Friday at SoxFest about the new closer, he said that pitcher will step up and set himself apart. In somewhat serious tones, he pointed to Bobby Jenks standing a few feet away and said his was the first name that came to the pitching coach's mind.

As Jenks recently told, he wants to make a comeback, but recovery from his October back surgery could take anywhere from six months to one year.

Scott Merkin is a reporter for 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.