CHICAGO -- The first month of the 2012 season didn't exactly go as John Danks would have liked. Actually, it was nothing close to what the left-handed ace had envisioned.
Although he closed April with a 2-3 record, Danks' ERA sits at a rotation-worst 6.23 and he has given up a team-high 31 hits and 15 walks over 30 1/3 innings. But for those who think pressure from the five-year, $65 million deal Danks signed during in the offseason is weighing on his shoulders, the affable but driven hurler smiled and politely said Wednesday that theory couldn't be further from the truth.
"I haven't even thought about it. It never comes up. It's a non-issue," Danks said. "I obviously understand the questions and what not, but that hasn't been the issue one time."
When it was pointed out to Danks that the struggles could have happened even if he was earning $400,000 or $500,000 per season, he quickly brought up his 0-8 start to the 2011 season.
"I did it last year," Danks said. "It truly is a non-issue."
The real issue for Danks simply is to find greater consistency, starting with his trip to the mound in Thursday's series finale against the Indians. That consistency doesn't fall upon one pitch in particular.
"Everything is kind of coming and going," Danks said. "We've been working hard and doing the things we need to do. But I would like to start seeing some results."
One good game doesn't satisfy Beckham
CHICAGO -- Gordon Beckham is too talented of a player and too confident of an individual to celebrate one three-hit game amid a season of early disappointment. So after three Wednesday pregame questions related to his strong series opener against the Indians on Tuesday, Beckham seemed to have enough of analyzing the effort bringing his average up to .190.
"These questions are ridiculous," Beckham said with a smile, belying his slightly bothered nature. "I mean I have one good game. I know I can hit. I was happy last night. I'm going to continue working the way I've been working.
"Whatever happens at the end of the year is what I worked for and what I deserved. That's all. I'm not going to put any numbers [on it]."
Beckham hit his first homer off of Ubaldo Jimenez to give the White Sox a 2-1 lead in the eventual 7-2 victory. It was the two following singles to right, though, that impressed manager Robin Ventura.
"Just the way he did it, kind of the way the at-bats progressed," Ventura said of Beckham's final two singles. "That kind of stuff is more promising and looks better than just one home run. That's something that can get him started. It has to start somewhere, and that's something that builds confidence."
The patience shown by Ventura has been appreciated by struggling hitters such as Beckham and Brent Morel. But as Beckham explained Wednesday, the team playing well overall stands as the most important factor.
Eventually, players such as Beckham hope to get hot and take pressure off of players such as A.J. Pierzynski, Paul Konerko, Adam Dunn and Alex Rios, who have been the team's driving forces on offense. That hot streak also would take the focus off of Beckham's game-to-game results.
"Usually this is a conversation you have in Spring Training, but apparently my season started a month later," said Beckham, who finished 0-for-2 with a run scored and a stolen base during Wednesday's 6-3 loss to the Indians. "Last night was good, a good start to May and hopefully the rest of the season."
Peavy remembers pal Seau as 'amazing man'
CHICAGO -- By the time Jake Peavy arrived in the big leagues with the Padres during the 2002 season, Junior Seau was completing a legendary 13-year run with the San Diego Chargers.
"When I got out there, he was larger than life," Peavy said of Seau, who was found dead in his Southern California home Wednesday morning from a possible self-inflicted gunshot wound.
"He was obviously a great player, and I'm sure he'll be remembered as that," Peavy said. "But Junior was a great person and a lot of fun. He was a happy person. When he walked in the room, it changed. Junior Seau in San Diego was larger than life, as he should have been. It's an awfully sad day for any of us who got the chance to know him."
Peavy last crossed paths with his friend this past winter, with the two playing golf in the same "circle of friends and athletes." The White Sox right-hander also felt for Seau's family, whom he knows a little bit.
But what happened to Seau and former Bears safety Dave Duerson in February 2011 showed once again that athletes put on pedestals for their on-field ability deal with the same issues and problems off the field as everyday people.
"It certainly brings you back down to understand we are all human beings," Peavy said. "We all go through difficult times and good times as well as the average person does. I just hope people will remember Junior the way I choose to remember him. That's a happy-go-lucky, fun-loving guy who made other people's lives better with the charity work he did, and Junior was an amazing man.
"Just a tough day for anybody who has been around Junior and his family as well. It's just disappointing for anything like this to happen to anybody. Somebody you know and you've been around and shared some good times with, it's a sad day."
Ventura: Player/manager role 'too much work'
CHICAGO -- Before Robin Ventura was officially hired as White Sox manager, general manager Ken Williams spoke of considering Paul Konerko as the rare player/manager candidate.
While Konerko certainly possesses the baseball acumen to handle the job, a smiling Ventura said Wednesday that Konerko couldn't do the job now while still playing regularly and at a high level for the White Sox.
"I know he couldn't do it. He could be a manager down the road, but he couldn't play and do that," Ventura said. "There's just too much work to do."
Ventura said that he couldn't have played and managed either and was surprised by the people who did both at the same time successfully.
"It's a little different now," Ventura said. "It'd be hard for someone to do it now."
Third to first
Robin Ventura said Wednesday that Dylan Axelrod is in line to start one of Monday's split-doubleheader games against the Indians at Progressive Field, assuming he's not previously needed in relief.
Addison Reed has made 11 consecutive scoreless appearances to start the season, tying him with Matt Karchner (1995) for the second-longest streak by a White Sox rookie reliever at the season's outset since 1921. Sergio Santos has the record at 12.
Philip Humber is 0-5 with a 5.61 ERA over his last 10 starts at home after Wednesday's 6-3 loss to the Indians. He's also 1-3 with a 5.98 ERA against the American League Central since last season.
The White Sox are 3-8 over their last 11 home games and 2-4 on this homestand.
A.J. Pierzynski caught his 1,452nd career game, moving him past Mickey Cochrane for sole possession of 34th place on the all-time list. He's tied with Ron Karkovice for seventh on the White Sox list at 918.