Chicago Sun-Times
with sports reporters Daryl Van Schouwen and Chris De Luca

Rios, Dunn Beckham check in to White Sox camp

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GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Alex Rios, Adam Dunn and Gordon Beckham, the big-three pieces of the White Sox' bounce-back hopefuls group, arrived at Spring Training a couple days early on Saturday. The first full squad workout is Tuesday.

"I'm very excited, looking forward to starting over this year. I'm looking to having a productive year,'' Rios said at his locker before a sizable media group.

Rios wants to keep it simple. He said he doesn't want to get too bogged down in mechanics after struggling through a disappointing season in which he batted .227 batting average and .265 on-base percentage. He hit 13 home runs and drove in 44 runs.

"See the ball and hit the ball,'' he said.

This offseason, Rios went through his normal hitting routines and looked at video of his productive years. He batted .284 with 21 homers and 88 RBI for the Sox in 2010 and played in two All-Star games as a Toronto Blue Jay.

"I broke down my swing, tried to analyze everything,'' he said. "Tried to remember the things I did my good years.''

"You have to have fun and play the game right.''

Dunn did some hitting during the offseason after suffering through a dreadful 2011. He can't put it behind him fast enough.

"I worked on some things in the off-season,'' Dunn said Saturday. "Hopefully me and [hitting coach] Jeff [Manto] can get together and kind of go over some things and see what he wants me to do and how he wants me to approach the season. Kind of go from there. My main goal is to be ready for Opening Day and that's what I'll do.

Rios, who might play left field if Alejandro De Aza takes over in center with Dayan Viciedo in right field, said he's more comfortable in center and right.

"I have played right and center. I like those because that's where I've played. Left is different. But we'll see what happens.''

Rios' best month was September, when he moved his hands away from his body. He batted .307 with five homers and 11 RBI in the final month.

"The year that I had, it's not fun,'' Rios said. "It makes the year longer. It makes everything miserable. I'm looking forward to having a hot start and keep going. That will make it fun again.''

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This page contains a single entry by Daryl Van Schouwen published on February 25, 2012 10:38 AM.

Molina, Castro make good first impressions on Ventura was the previous entry in this blog.

White Sox' Beckham knows what he needs to do is the next entry in this blog.

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