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Should White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson be in conversation for AL batting title?

Since returning July 30 from a high ankle sprain, Anderson has been one of the most consistent bats in the Sox’ lineup.

Tim Anderson
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After having his All-Star-caliber first half cut short by a right-ankle injury, White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson hasn’t -experienced any drop-off since his return.

In fact, this is the best he has ever felt and played in the big leagues.

Since returning July 30 from a high ankle sprain that sidelined him for more than a month, Anderson has been one of the most reliable bats in the Sox’ lineup and one of the hottest hitters in the majors.

After going 1-for-4 Saturday night against the Rangers at Guaranteed Rate Field, -Anderson has hit .368 (39-for-106) since coming back.

“I’m appreciating the consistency of the way he’s going about his business,” manager Rick Renteria said.

But will Anderson’s quick start to the season and late-summer surge be enough to make him a contender for the American League batting title?

Renteria likes to think so.

“Because of [his] consistency and the approaches he’s taking, it will give him a chance to do that,” he said. “That would be a tremendous feat.”

Anderson, who needs to average 3.4 plate appearances per game the rest of the way to qualify for the title, said he’s trying not to worry about that.

“If it happens, it happens,” he said. “I just try to stay consistent in what I do and finish the year strong.”

Anderson, who extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a single in the eighth inning, has a .332/.353/.496 slash line with 13 home runs and 46 RBI in 95 games.

He’s proud of his progress at the plate but believes he hasn’t even scratched the surface of his potential.

“I’m panning out to be the player I want to be,” Anderson said. “I just have to continue to work hard, stay focused.”

Eloy’s back

After sitting out two games with a sore right hip, rookie left fielder Eloy Jimenez was eased back into the lineup as the designated hitter. Renteria said he plans to be very cautious with Jimenez the next few days.

“We’ll try to manage it and control it,” Renteria said. “There are times as players go in their career that they learn how to play with certain sorenesses and things of that nature. We’re not, obviously, trying to force him to do anything.”

This and that

First baseman Jose Abreu received a standing ovation after he singled to right field in the first inning for his 1,000th career hit.

† After the loss to the Rangers, the Sox optioned right-hander Jose Ruiz to Class AAA Charlotte. He struck out four and walked one in 1⅓ innings Saturday.