Peavy looking to stay healthy all season

For the first time in three years, Chicago White Sox pitcher Jake Peavy enters spring training injury-free and ready to lead a young staff in its quest to win the American League Central Division.

"Mark Buerhle will be missed, but we have guys on this staff that can pick up the slack," Peavy said. "There is no doubt about it, we have guys who have done good things in the past.

"It's huge to give (John Danks) the stability, and him being the guy here for the next five or so years. We have the pieces in here to win. It's just the bottom line of us showing up and doing it."

Peavy will have to revert back to the type of pitcher he was four years ago in order to help stabilize this young group. The 31-year-old pitcher lost ten pounds in the offseason in order to have less weight on his surgically repaired ankle.

“I got to be off of a rehab program and was able to be on a normal offseason program," Peavy said. "I just had a normal winter like I had before the two big injuries in Chicago."

Only making 19 starts in 2011 was part of the reason the team did not get the job done last season. Peavy promises more this time around.

"I feel as healthy as I can be, and I hope to do all I can to stay that way so we don't have to talk about health and just baseball," he said.

But people still will concentrate on Peavy's ability to pitch every five days.

“I'll be highly disappointed if I don't make every start," Peavy said. "Yeah if I don't make 30 starts, I'll be highly disappointed."

The Alabama native has plenty to prove to the Sox brass, as well as a fan base that has never seen him at his best for more than a start or two.

"Nobody has felt worse than myself," Peavy said.

The real test for the former Cy Young award winner will be to prove to himself he is still a top of the line starting pitcher. Scouts throughout the game always believed that the violent motion of his delivery would put him in jeopardy of blowing out as a young pitcher. The fact is Peavy has made only 48 starts in the last three seasons, winning just 20 ballgames.

Maybe low expectations will be exceeded this time around.