Brent Morel to see spine specialist

CHICAGO -- Two weeks after saying he felt "perfectly normal," White Sox third baseman Brent Morel's lower back injury has gotten progressively worse, so much so that he has an appointment with a local spine specialist on Monday with possibly another appointment later this week in Los Angeles.

Said manager Robin Ventura: "We're going to figure out exactly what it is and take care of it. If there has to be surgery, just do it. But I think at this point they've done a lot of things you can do without that. So send him to somebody who can specifically find out what it is."

Morel, speaking to reporters after Sunday's 11-9 White Sox loss, said it wasn't any singular play during his rehab game with Triple-A Charlotte on Thursday that worsened his condition.

"It progressively got worse, kind of every day there," Morel said. "It felt good for a couple of days and then just got back to where it was and not being able to play."

The 25-year-old Morel is hitting just .177 this season while his replacement, Orlando Hudson, is only hitting .202 in his absence. Morel said he would like to stay away from surgery with the hopes of returning to the team this season.

"I'm going to do everything I can to not do that (surgery) and hopefully with some time off I won't have to," Morel said.

Morel and the White Sox should know soon enough the extent of his injury. It's been a month since Morel received a cortisone shot for the pain he's experienced all season.

"It's just frustrating," he said. "I know they're doing everything they can. The guys worked really hard. I guess it's something that needs to be looked at a little more and figure out exactly what's going on and hopefully figure out how to fix it."