Ever since A.J. Pierzynski exited via free agency and signed a one-year contract with the Texas Rangers in late December, Tyler Flowers was more than a little worried about replacing the White Sox' popular catcher.
Flowers still knows he has some huge shoes to fill, but he's wasted little time making a positive impression on his team and Sox fans.
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It's only two games into the season, but White Sox pitchers have yielded just 1 earned run in 2 wins over the Royals.
At the plate, Flowers decided Monday's 1-0 win with a home run. The 27-year-old Atlanta native hit another solo shot and singled in Wednesday's 5-2 win over Kansas City.
"It's great because I know how much pressure that he's probably been putting on himself following a guy like A.J., who obviously did a lot of great things here," Adam Dunn said of Flowers. "But any time you come in and take over for a guy, you want to go out and just jump out to a great start. A lot of times you put too much pressure on yourself. He hasn't done that so far, obviously, and he's done everything. He called two great games and also won us a couple."
Flowers has always made handling the pitching staff his No. 1 priority. If he contributes with the bat, even better.
"I guess it's good," Flowers said. " I'd be just as happy if it was some line drives, hits or outs. I'm just looking for quality at-bats right now. The hits and all that stuff, the home runs, that will all take care of itself as long as you focus on every at-bat and get a quality at-bat."
Konerko ties Thomas:
Paul Konerko's double in the sixth inning gave him 2,136 hits in a White Sox uniform, tying him with Frank Thomas for third place on the club's all-time list.
"Any time you get mentioned with Frank, hitting-wise, it's nice," Konerko said. "He's definitely the best hitter this organization's ever seen and probably will ever see. So to be mentioned up there with him and have a number that's in the same ballpark in any regard is kind of cool."
Adam Dunn put the Sox in front Wednesday with a solo home run off Royals starter Ervin Santana leading off the second inning.
Acting on his plan to be more aggressive early in the count, Dunn drilled Santana's first pitch 431 feet into the right-field bleachers.
"It's one of those things where I don't really care how far they go," Dunn said. "All I care about is good at-bats and putting good wood on it. If it goes out, cool. If it doesn't, you did all you could."