GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — A pair of center fielders made their spring training debuts on the field Monday, but it was Alex Rios who had the better day.
Rios, who has been in the White Sox lineup only once this spring because of a sore right shoulder, went 2 for 2 with a mammoth home run to deep center field in Chicago's 5-4 loss to a Seattle Mariners split squad.
"It's good to be back out there," said Rios, a two-time All-Star who hit only .199 for Chicago after being waived by the Toronto Blue Jays last August. "It's not 100 percent but I just have to get through it throwing as much as possible. I was hoping nobody hit any ground balls or something to center that I had to make any throws. But it's all good I guess."
Rios said his shoulder injury has not affected his swing.
"This guy's not too far away," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said of Rios.
Franklin Gutierrez, the Mariners' everyday center fielder in 2009 who signed a $20.5 million contract extension with this offseason, appeared in his first game after sitting out the first four with his own bum right shoulder. Gutierrez struck out and hit into a double play but drove in a run with a seventh-inning sacrifice fly.
"His timing was off a little bit," Mariners bench coach Ty Van Burkleo said of Gutierrez, "so we wanted to get him another at-bat so he could end on a good note, and he had a real good swing on that sac fly so he's able to leave feeling like he's getting his timing back. But he's fine throwing."
The White Sox starting lineup offered a glimpse at what could be their Opening Day group: outfielders Juan Pierre, Carlos Quentin and Rios; infielders Gordon Beckham, Paul Konerko, Mark Teahen and Alexei Ramirez; catcher A.J. Pierzynski; and designated hitter Mark Kotsay.
Matt Tuiasosopo went 3 for 4 with two RBI for Seattle.
NOTES: The White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers played an 8 1/2-inning "B'' game Monday morning that ended in a 3-3 tie. ... White Sox OF prospect Stefan Gartrell was hit in the left knee with a pitch during the morning's game and was lifted for a pinch runner. INF Brent Lillibridge was also hit later in the game and was taken out. Both were available to play against Seattle. ... LHP John Danks, RHP Daniel Hudson, RHP Freddy Garcia and LHP Jake Peavy are the next four starting pitchers for the White Sox on the spring training schedule. ... LHP Cliff Lee is scheduled to make his first spring training start for Seattle on Wednesday against the Texas Rangers.