Jesse Crain entering a telltale time

CHICAGO – Asked how he is progressing from his elbow strain, Chicago White Sox reliever Jesse Crain gave the equivalent of a shrug Wednesday.

“The best way I can explain it is I felt OK,” said Crain, who has been on the disabled list since July 3. “I did throw today, I’ll play catch again tomorrow and see how I feel and go from there and hopefully all goes well.”

If Crain will indeed return to the White Sox’s bullpen early next week like pitching coach Don Cooper projected, his bullpen session Thursday will need to go well.

“It depends how I feel,” Crain said. “It’s just a day-by-day thing. That’s the only way I can take it, is see how I feel each day and go from there.”

Time is running out to get Crain back on the mound for prospective trade suitors to see he is completely healthy. The veteran is a prime trade candidate for the White Sox because his contract expires at the end of the season and the team isn’t expected to re-sign the right-hander.

"It’s in the back of my mind but right now I’m more focused on being healthy and being able to pitch,” Crain said about trade possibilities. “I’m not going to be going anywhere if I can’t pitch, so that’s what I’m focusing on right now.”