We have been playing good baseball this season. When we have had to battle, we have battled, and that is basically what we have been doing. Our offense has been good, and our pitching has been good, too. We have enjoyed a good combination of both, and that is a good sign.

When I talk about going out there and battling, it is about how we have come back in so many games. It is good for us to see that even when we are down early in a game we don't give up. Instead, we come back, and those are the battles you try and win.

When you do that, it shows the character of the players on this team. After all, we are here to win. We go out there each and every day trying to win as many games as we can. We put our best effort out there on the field, and when you battle back, I think it shows a lot to people.

One of the keys to our season so far has been winning on the road. I can't really tell you why we have had that success, but I do know that we want to do our best to try and keep that up. Oftentimes, you can't really tell what the differences are between winning on the road and winning your home games. It is about trying to play consistent baseball, regardless of where the games take place.

We also have a new manager in Robin Ventura. It is a little different than last year. He has a different style than Ozzie Guillen. I don't want to say that Ozzie was aggressive, but I can just say that it is different this year, for sure.

When I heard about our new manager, I knew I had met him once before. It was on the field about a year prior, but I didn't really know him well as a person. I didn't know a lot about him. But as you do get to know him, you get to see what kind of person he is and you get to see his attitude toward the game. He is a good manager.

This is also the first time he has managed, but you get plenty of experience by playing the game yourself. As a player, you get to see how it all goes. You see what happens on the field and you learn how to work things out off the field.

He played the game for so long and that experience, I believe, is a positive asset to have.

Center fielder Alex Rios and the White Sox are battling for first place in the American League Central. Rios is hitting .287 with eight home runs and 35 RBIs in 67 games. A nine-year veteran, Rios is a two-time American League All-Star.