White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson hoping to avoid IL

“I don’t want to go on the [injured list], nobody does,” Anderson said. “I’m trying to avoid that but being smart.”

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Shortstop Tim Anderson is not expected to play in the three-game series that opened with a 6-0 victory Monday in Seattle after he pulled up lame with a tight hamstring Sunday against the Angels.

Just how long he’ll be out is not known. After the win Monday, manager Tony La Russa said an MRI “showed that it’s something that should heal quickly. We’re definitely going to buy [Tim] the next couple days and not [put him on the injured list yet], because he’s a fast healer, and we’ll see how he is on Thursday.”

The Sox home opener is Thursday against the Royals.

“I don’t want to go on the [injured list], nobody does,” Anderson said. “I’m trying to avoid that but being smart. If I need to, I’m open for it, even though I don’t want to. [I’ll] try to get healthy and play it smart.”

Leury Garcia played shortstop, and second baseman Nick Madrigal led off for the first time since Sept. 18 in Anderson’s spot in the lineup.

“I feel good right now, feel better than [Sunday], so that’s a positive,” Anderson said.

Mercedes named Player of the Week

Designated hitter Yermin Mercedes, who made history in the opening series of the season, was named American League Player of the Week for April 1-4 — and that was before he went 3-for-4 against the Mariners Monday to raise his average to .667.

 Mercedes, 28, went 9-for-14 (.643) with a home run, two doubles, six RBI and two runs scored in three games last week. He became the first player to start a season with eight consecutive hits, breaking the previous mark set by Cincinnati’s Chris Stynes (seven) in 2007.

Mercedes went 5-for-5 with a double and four RBI on Friday against the Angels and had hits in his first three plate appearances Saturday, including a homer in his first at-bat.

The 5-for-5 game was the first by any player in his first career start, and Mercedes joined Washington’s Cecil Travis, who went 5-for-7 in a game against Cleveland in 1933, as the only players in the modern era with five hits in their first starts.

“I feel I’m a big-leaguer right now because the things I’m doing every day are for big-leaguers,” said Mercedes, who posed for pictures with Mike Trout and Albert Pujols.

La Russa said the entire team is enjoying Mercedes, a 10-year minor-leaguer who entered the season with one big-league at-bat, have success.

“I’m not sure the camera caught all of it, but when he had that string of hits, the guys went nuts,” La Russa said.

Alternate-site squad

The Sox will host the Cubs’ alternate team for five games (April 13, 19, 24, 28 and 30), four will be at their Schaumburg site and the April 19 game will be at Guaranteed Rate Field.

 The Sox travel to the Cubs’ alternate site in South Bend, Indiana, on April 15, 17, 21 and 26. Fans will be allowed to attend the April 17 game.

 The Sox are considering allowing fans to attend. The Cubs-Sox alternate-squad game at Guaranteed Rate Field on April 19 will not be open to the public.

The Sox’ alternate-site team is made up of pitchers Zack Burdi, Ryan Burr, Will Carter, Danny Dopico, Tayron Guerrero, Tyler Johnson, Reynaldo Lopez, Kade McClure, Alex McRae, Connor Sadzeck, Jonathan Stiever, Mike Wright, Kodi Medeiros and Nik Turley, catchers Carlos Perez and Seby Zavala, infielders Tim Beckham, Marco Hernandez, Mendick, Zach Remillard, Matt Reynolds and Gavin Sheets and outfielders Luis Gonzalez, Mikie Mahtook, Blake Rutherford and Nick Williams.

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