ARLINGTON, Texas - The White Sox are speeding up the process in hopes of getting left-hander John Danks back on the mound. The Opening Day starter who hasn't pitched since May 19 is skipping long-toss work and throwing from the mound only.
Danks threw 30 pitches off the mound Friday in Day 1 of the new plan.
"It goes back to the spring training type deal where we're having to condense some of it and push it, take some of the longer throws out and get ready to be on the mound,'' Danks said. "That's all I need to be ready for.''
"We're going to carry this out the rest of the trip and see where this takes us,'' pitching coach Don Cooper said. "And then we'll talk again and see what we need to do then.
"It's all in an attempt to see if he can help us sometime before the season is over."
Time is not on Danks' side.
"It's getting to that point where it's going to have happen pretty fast for him to be able to go down and have a rehab assignment and feel strong enough where he can come in here and pitch,'' manager Robin Ventura said. "So, it's getting closer and closer to that time, and if not, you kind of look toward next year.''
Danks was assured by team doctors and training staff that the plan has no risks.
"Obviously it would be ideal if we had longer time to build up arm strength but we don't have that time,'' said Danks, who signed a five-year, $65 million contract this past offseason. "I'm on board. Kind of willing to do anything at this point to get back and this is what we come up with.''
Danks was disappointed that he didn't feel stronger throwing Friday.
"Nonetheless I was able to get through it,'' he said. "Again, part of the process. I've been assured the injury, I can push it more than I might want to. I've been assured I can't hurt it. As long as I can get the strength back and get to where I can be effective, I'm willing to try it.''
He described his current arm strength as "not great.''
"I thought today would be a little better than it was but I was told that's all part of it,'' Danks said. "Would have like to have been able to push it a little further than I did, but it was still kind of right there where I've been. I didn't take any steps back, at least.''
Cooper said ate August, "maybe early September" is a target date for a Danks appearance.
"And then, if it's not early September, maybe it's the start of 2013. Nobody really knows,'' Cooper said. "That's going to unfold in front of us, one way or another."