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Sox players staying focused amid trade rumors

PHILADELPHIA -- The widespread rumors involving the potential White Sox rebuild took on a more realistic tone when left-handed reliever Matt Thornton was traded with cash considerations to Boston on Friday in exchange for toolsy Minor League outfielder Brandon Jacobs.

For relievers Matt Lindstrom and Jesse Crain, starting pitchers Jake Peavy and John Danks and outfielder Alex Rios -- all players whom other teams have expressed interest in -- the question becomes more "when" than "if" regarding trades. But manager Robin Ventura said it's his staff's job to keep the focus on baseball.

"Any time these guys read a paper or look at the names floating around, now one of them is true," Ventura said. "It does become tougher to concentrate. It's our job to make sure they are focused on the right stuff. It does become a little tougher because it was a rumor before, but now something has happened. It doesn't mean the rest of them are going to happen."

Crain, who stands as a prime trade target despite working his way back from shoulder soreness that put him on the disabled list, admits there is a little bit of a "Who's next?" feeling for those in the mix.

"[The Thornton deal] kind of opens that door," said Crain. "But like we said the whole time, you've just got to keep going out there and playing one day at a time and win games for the team you're on.

"That's what the guys are going to try to do, and for me personally I've just got to get healthy every day and see where that takes me. You can only control certain things. You can't worry about everything else."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin.
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