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updated: 6/5/2012 11:21 PM

Sox' Humber frustrated by rough start

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  • White Sox starting pitcher Philip Humber delivers during the first inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays.

      White Sox starting pitcher Philip Humber delivers during the first inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays.
    Associated Press

  • The Blue Jays' Colby Rasmus is greeted in the dugout after hitting the first of a pair of 2-run homers off White Sox starting pitcher Philip Humber in the fifth inning Tuesday night.

      The Blue Jays' Colby Rasmus is greeted in the dugout after hitting the first of a pair of 2-run homers off White Sox starting pitcher Philip Humber in the fifth inning Tuesday night.
    Associated Press

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First, the good news for the White Sox.

Paul Konerko was scratched from the starting lineup before Tuesday night's game against the Toronto Blue Jays.

There was some initial concern, considering the Sox waited until after the game to detail Konerko's condition.

As it turns out, the American League's leading hitter (.366) had a procedure to dislodge a bone fragment in his left wrist.

Konerko went through the same thing last year and missed two games. Manager Robin Ventura said Konerko should be good to go Wednesday night.

"They took care of it," Ventura said. "It's like a little chip that floats around in his wrist. They flushed it out. He was out for today, but he should be OK for tomorrow."

Now, the bad news.

Philip Humber appeared to be turning the corner after he pitched 7 innings and allowed 2 runs on 5 hits in a win at Tampa Bay last Tuesday.

It was Humber's best performance -- and first victory -- since his April 21 perfect game at Seattle.

So how did the White Sox' right-hander follow up against the Blue Jays?

Humber barely made it out of the first inning, even though he allowed 1 run. Humber allowed a hit and 3 walks in the first, and his pitch count already stood at 37 before he made it back to the dugout.

The rough beginning set a negative tone in a 9-5 loss to Toronto at U.S. Cellular Field.

Humber appeared to settle down after the shaky first inning, but he served up 2-run homers to Colby Rasmus (5-for-5) and David Cooper in the fifth inning, and that was it for the White Sox.

The frustration of being more down than up is wearing on Humber (2-3).

"I'd love to go out there and be good," Humber said after his ERA climbed to 5.68. "I know I'm capable of it. If you allow your struggles to make you stronger, they will. And I'm going to be really strong after all these struggles.

"I've just got to keep fighting. It's a long season. Of course I want to be out there being consistent and helping the guys out. Right now I'm not really pulling my share of the rope."

Humber said a lack of "feel" for his pitches was the problem again.

Ventura said it's still too early to think about moving Humber or Gavin Floyd (4-5, 5.32 ERA) out of the rotation.

"They're going to work through it," Ventura said. "You're going against a team that can hit and you're getting behind in hitters' counts, giving them some good pitches to hit. They're going to take advantage of it.

"(Humber) just has to get better. He has to get better at jumping ahead and better control. When he's got the count in his favor, just spot it better."

The White Sox crawled back from a 7-1 deficit to make it a 7-4 game in the seventh inning thanks to a 2-run homer by A.J. Pierzynski, but the Jays answered right back with 2 runs against Zach Stewart in the eighth.

"We got a little momentum going and they just took it right back by scoring," Ventura said. "We have to be able to limit them and stop them right there and give us a shot."

sgregor@dailyherald.com

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