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updated: 6/25/2012 10:45 PM

Youkilis promises to 'play the game right'

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  • White Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis went 1-for-4 in his debut on the South Side.

      White Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis went 1-for-4 in his debut on the South Side.
    Associated Press

  • Kevin Youkilis runs during warmups prior to a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Monday, June 25, 2012, in Minneapolis. Youkilis was traded to the White Sox on Sunday from the Boston Red Sox.

      Kevin Youkilis runs during warmups prior to a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Monday, June 25, 2012, in Minneapolis. Youkilis was traded to the White Sox on Sunday from the Boston Red Sox.
    Associated Press

  • Kevin Youkilis smiles during warmups prior to a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Monday, June 25, 2012, in Minneapolis. Youkilis was traded to the White Sox on Sunday from the Boston Red Sox.

      Kevin Youkilis smiles during warmups prior to a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Monday, June 25, 2012, in Minneapolis. Youkilis was traded to the White Sox on Sunday from the Boston Red Sox.
    Associated Press

 
 

The White Sox need immediate help at third base, and they are hoping Kevin Youkilis is the answer.

After being acquired in a trade Sunday that sent utility man Brent Lillibridge and minor-league pitcher Zach Stewart to the Boston Red Sox, Youkilis wasted little time joining his new team.

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Youkilis made his debut with the White Sox on Monday night in a 4-1 loss to the Twins at Target Field and went 1-for-4, singling up the middle in his final at-bat after grounding out in the first and fourth innings and flying out to center field in the sixth.

Wearing uniform No. 20, which used to belong to rookie outfielder Jordan Danks, Youkilis batted second in the lineup.

That dropped Gordon Beckham to the No. 9 spot, even though he was batting .320 with 3 doubles, 4 home runs and 18 RBI over his last 25 games.

Youkilis looked pretty good at the plate, and before the game he told Comcast SportsNet broadcaster Steve Stone his troublesome back is not an issue.

"I'm doing good," Youkilis said. "The back has definitely gotten a lot better."

As for Youkilis' overall game, he's heard all of the talk about being a player on the decided downside.

"Hopefully I can come to the White Sox and just bring it day in and day out, play the game hard, play the game the right way," Youkilis told reporters. "I can't guarantee anything with stats and all that, but I know one thing -- that I'll come out here every day and play the game right and give it my all. Hopefully that's enough."

A popular player in Boston for nine seasons, Youkilis was having a miserable season with the Red Sox before being traded to the White Sox.

Before landing on the disabled list in May with a sore back, Youkilis was called out in public by first-year manager Bobby Valentine, who questioned his commitment.

Valentine benched Youkilis for three straight games late last week, prompting the 33-year-old third baseman to say: "I don't know my situation. To be honest, I was never told what's going on here. Let's get that straight."

Those comments expedited his exit out of Boston, but Youkilis didn't want to discuss Valentine or his messy departure.

"I don't really want to comment on that," he said. "We're past that here, and that's that. We're just leaving it behind."

While he is thrilled to be with the White Sox, Youkilis was still feeling emotions from Sunday.

He was lifted from the Red Sox' game against the Braves at Fenway Park after tripling in the seventh inning.

A video tribute followed, and Youkilis came out of the dugout and got to say so long to the home fans.

"It was not an easy time for me," Youkilis said. "It was definitely very surreal, and hit me like a ton of bricks when I got pinch-ran for. It was a great send off. The Red Sox fans were unbelievable. They've always been unbelievable to me.

"It was tough for my family, trying to figure out where we're going. But it's a great thing to be in a great city in Chicago."

As for Lillibridge, he joined the Red Sox in Boston on Monday but wasn't in the starting lineup against the Blue Jays.

"I was spoiled with the White Sox and their fan base, but it's kind of hard to compare to the Red Sox," Lillibridge told reporters. "I'm obviously excited. You kind of have to turn the page pretty quick in this game and I'm excited to be a part of this team."

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