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White Sox second-base job a five-man battle

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- While many White Sox position players worked out Sunday morning on the back fields at Camelback Ranch, they aren't officially scheduled to report until Tuesday. The fight for the starting second-base job will switch into high gear at that point, with Micah Johnson, Carlos Sanchez, Emilio Bonifacio, Gordon Beckham and Tyler Saladino all in the mix.

According to third-base coach Joe McEwing, who works with the infielders as well, any of the five would wind up as a good choice.

"Absolutely. They are all very talented and definitely could help us win ballgames, every single one of them," McEwing said. "Competition, that's the fun part of baseball.

"When you have an opportunity to go out there and prove yourself and put yourself in the best position to be successful, we are all excited to see how it unfolds. The biggest thing for every single one of them is to worry about the things you control, and that's being yourself. Yourself is good enough."

In other news from Camelback Ranch on Sunday:

Jose Abreu is scheduled to meet with the media Monday morning. The reigning American League Rookie of the Year Award winner looks lean and continues to work out with a plan and a purpose each day.

Adam LaRoche arrived on Sunday, worked out with his fellow position players and will talk with the media as well on Monday. Manager Robin Ventura knew LaRoche as a youngster, when Ventura played for the White Sox and Dave LaRoche, Adam's father, was the bullpen coach from 1989-91.

"I've known him a long time," said Ventura of LaRoche. "When you know his family and how he grew up, it's easier to build that relationship. It's pretty much already there. The trust and everything that goes with it is built in."

• Brian Anderson, who did not receive a big league Spring Training invite with his Minor League deal, continues to work out on the Minor League side. Anderson, 32, has been out of baseball since 2009 as an outfielder.

"I really just want to go hit every day and get better and see what happens, to be honest," Anderson said.

• After recharging during a 2013 season away from baseball and a 2014 spent in the Miami organization, Brad Penny is in White Sox camp as a non-roster invite. The 36-year-old Penny, who has made starts in 319 of his 350 career appearances, prefers to work as a starter.

"I'm better off as a starter," Penny said. "The older you get, the harder it is to get loose. I need to know I'm starting at 7 o'clock."

"I think he can do anything really," said White Sox manager Robin Ventura of Penny, who played with Ventura on the '04 Dodgers. "He's not coming in here just demanding he has to be a starter and only pitch on Thursdays. He's willing to do anything there is to be on a big league roster."

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