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posted: 9/4/2012 12:01 AM

White Sox continue to get healthy returns

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If the White Sox are going to hold off the Tigers and win the AL Central, they have to stay healthy.

The Sox got leadoff man Alejandro De Aza (bruised left ribs) off the disabled list Sunday night at Detroit. Monday night, Adam Dunn was back in the starting lineup after missing two games with a strained right oblique.

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Dunn tested the injury during batting practice and was cleared to play.

"He feels pretty good," manager Robin Ventura said. "The way he was moving around was a lot different than he was the other day."

Dunn lobbied to play in Sunday's big game at Detroit but was held back for one more day.

"(Sunday), getting out of bed wasn't that hard," said Dunn, who leads the White Sox with 38 home runs and 88 RBI. "Bending over, putting socks on, lots of stupid stuff, things like that were a lot better. We'll see what happens."

Dunn was 1-for-3 with a walk in his return.

Floyd update:

On the 15-day disabled list since Aug. 27 with a flexor strain in his throwing (right) elbow, Gavin Floyd threw 20 pitches off the mound Monday afternoon.

"It was a little achy, but it felt pretty good," Floyd said. "It was a step in the right direction. I'm pretty excited about that.

"So keep on doing the regimen and the next bullpen I guess would be a little longer, throwing breaking balls, so that will be kind of the true test to see what happens."

Floyd is scheduled to come in and throw again Thursday, when the White Sox are off. He'd like to get off the DL on time, but the 29-year-old starter has twice been bothered by elbow soreness this season.

"I wasn't 100 percent out there, but I felt pretty good, pretty loose," Floyd said. "It was more in between pitches that I was feeling it. It wasn't 'ouch.' I just hope it doesn't do it again."

Looking ahead:

Hector Santiago filled in for Gavin Floyd on Monday night and pitched well in his first major-league start.

Santiago's next scheduled turn is Sunday against Kansas City, but manager Robin Ventura said Dylan Axelrod is likely to come back up from the minor leagues for that start.

Rest in peace:

Actor Michael Clarke Duncan, a Chicago native, died Monday at 54. Duncan narrated the White Sox' 2005 World Series championship DVD.

"Michael was a close friend," Sox general manager Kenny Williams said in a statement. "He was the nicest, kindest guy anyone could ever know. He was a great fan of the Chicago White Sox and often called me to offer advice. His friendship will be missed."

Minor matter:

Even though Winston-Salem lost to Salem on Monday, the Dash (87-51) already have clinched finishing with the best record in minor-league baseball.

First baseman Dan Black, batting .315 with 17 home runs and 86 RBI, is the Carolina League MVP. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound Black was the White Sox' 14th-round draft pick in 2009 after starring at Purdue.

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