Ordonez, who missed 37 games with torn cartilage in his left knee, will take Thomas’ place as Chicago’s designated hitter Friday.
Thomas has missed two straight games due to an inflamed left ankle, an injury first suffered June 17 but aggravated last week in Minnesota.
Thomas will meet with a doctor to determine the severity of the bone chips in the ankle. He is not expected to play in this series and could potentially need surgery that will keep him out at least six weeks.
The White Sox had initially hoped to send Ordonez on a minor league rehab assignment, but decided against it because of the injury to Thomas.
“I’m not going to go crazy. I’m going to take it easy, but I’m still going to play my game,” said Ordonez, who was hitting .311 with eight home runs and 34 RBIs in 42 games before going on the DL. “If I need to run hard, then I will. If I don’t need to run really hard, then I won’t do it. I’m going to take it easy tomorrow.”
Ordonez should be a welcome addition to an offense which had produced just nine runs during a five-game losing streak before Thursday’s 9-8 win over Anaheim.
“They should thank God that they won this game,” manager Ozzie Guillen said. “Because they were going to have the biggest meeting they ever had in their career.
“We were going to be here for a little while and talk about baseball. We were going to send the wives home, because it was going to be a long one.”
The Mariners have dropped a season high-tying six straight, including a 10-8 defeat to Toronto on Thursday.
Randy Winn went 4-for-5 with a homer and four RBIs for Seattle, which was swept for the sixth time this season.
Edgar Martinez drove in two runs, passing Harold Baines for the most career RBIs among designated hitters with 979.