White Sox’s Liam Hendriks closer to return

DETROIT (AP) — Liam Hendriks took live batting practice Friday at Comerica Park, possibly a final step before joining the White Sox for his season debut after a bout with cancer.

The Sox closer threw 19 pitches to Elvis Andrus, Adam Haseley and Seby Zavala. Other than a ground ball to the third base side of second base by lefty Haseley, contact was limited.

“His numbers were really good,” coach Pedro Grifol said. “He came from Cleveland. A very good step in the right direction.”

This could be Hendriks’ last checkbox, but Grifol stressed that Hendriks won’t be in a hurry. Hendriks had his last round of chemotherapy on April 3.

Hendriks made six appearances for Triple-A Charlotte, allowing six earned runs in five innings. This was his third live BP.

“We will sit down and evaluate it as an organization and see what our next step is,” Grifol said.

“He’s filling the zone and getting some outs,” Zavala said. “The material looks good. I think it all comes down now to how you feel.

“You talk to him, he says he feels good.”

Burger working second

Jake Burger worked second base before the game under coach Eddie Rodriguez. It is not known when Burger, a third baseman, will play second base, but he is preparing for an assignment.

“He’s very, very helpful,” Rodríguez said. “He may look different to the naked eye, but he has some athleticism and is capable of doing what is required.

“He’s just learning the fundamentals.”

Going back to popups and moving to both sides with left to right ground balls shouldn’t be a problem.

“He’s done it in third,” Rodríguez said. “It’s about making sure we fix things to convert the double play. It’s crucial, it’s two for one, two outs on one swing and we have to be prepared for that and confident enough for him to do it. His hands work, his feet work well, and he has enough arm.”

Burger’s Stolen Base

Burger runs well for his stocky frame, and he was more than happy to discuss his first stolen base since college against the Tigers on Thursday. He stole second and scored on Tim Anderson’s single.

“Crazy. I was texting my friends about it, they were like ‘had to be a butt, steal first and second,'” he said. “I was like, ‘no, it was direct.’ I sent them the video. It felt good. I won’t let Gavin Sheets hear the ending.

Clevinger in rhythm

Right-hander Mike Clevinger said he is scheduled to throw a bullpen Saturday in Detroit and a live batting practice a couple of days later in Chicago. If all goes to plan, Clevinger could come off the disabled list to face the Tigers on June 2.

That would put him in his spot in the rotation, which was filled by starter Jimmy Lambert for one inning and Jesse Scholtens for five on Monday in Cleveland. Grifol could opt for the same plan on Friday.

This and that

Eloy Jimenez could return from his rehab assignment at Double-A Birmingham on Monday. Grifol said he only cares about how Jimenez feels, not his performance in minor league games, saying Jimenez “feels great.”

*Outfielder Jake Marisnick accepted his assignment and was outright traded to Triple-A Charlotte. Marisnick was designated for assignment Sunday when Charlotte’s Clint Frazier’s contract was selected.