Jose Quintana 'strong' in spring debut

The first spring start is all about shaking out the cobwebs. In that sense, the Chicago White Sox are more than pleased with Jose Quintana’s Cactus League debut Monday.

The left-hander, who topped the 200-inning mark in his first full season last year, gave up two runs on two hits over two innings against the Kansas City Royals, while walking two with one strikeout. He allowed both of his runs to score after retiring the first two batters of the second inning.

“He was fine,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura told reporters in Arizona. “He was picking around the plate a little early. I think with two outs, just picking a little bit too much and gets in trouble. Other than that, he was fine. He got through it. He was strong.”

The clear-cut No. 2 starter in the White Sox’s rotation will make an extremely affordable $550,000 this year. And if he can top the 200-inning mark again -- while delivering something close to his career 3.61 ERA -- the White Sox will be getting one of the better bargains in baseball.

“He’s a good enough pitcher and strong enough to do it,” Ventura said about Quintana again exceeding 200 innings. “I’m glad he has that kind of a goal for himself to be able to do that. He should be able to do that.”

The White Sox eventually topped the Royals 9-7, thanks to a four-run sixth inning, topped by two more runs in the seventh.

Andy Wilkins, Paul Konerko and Jordan Danks each had two hits for the White Sox. Wilkins got the scoring started with a three-run home run in the first inning.