For those of you who are regular readers of this blog, you’re well aware that I’m a huge fan of Ozzie‘s.
First and foremost, he’s one of us. In a world where the White Sox have little identity outside of the South Side and nearby environs, he gives us a torch bearer. If baseball fans know anything about the team, it’s Ozzie. He’s put us on the map.
Second, he is hilarious. His off-the-cuff remarks on a daily basis bring some much-needed humor into the ups and downs of the long season. Finally, and this is something that is the least publicized about him, Ozzie is a very good manager. Underrated because his theatrics take center stage, but very good nonetheless.
All that said, our skipper does have an Achilles Heel and it surfaced again in Toronto as the South Siders dropped the final three games of the four-game series against the Jays.
It wasn’t that Ozzie ripped his players after the 14-inning loss on Saturday. I’m glad he did, they deserved it. What I find tiresome is that every time the Sox are in the throes of losing and criticism from the fans and media come his way, Guillen goes into unintelligible, defensive tirades. He’ll criticize the criticism, say or imply he’s not appreciated, question fan loyalty and make the point that he doesn’t need the job because he has plenty of money, etc. In the current episode, he tweeted Sunday that the media misrepresented his remarks, but there was enough on the record to believe the initial reports.
I understand that this is Ozzie’s way of releasing the frustration that all of us feel, but it’s getting old. Blaming the outside influences like the fans and media is not the answer. At least when he criticizes player performance, he’s focusing on the individuals responsible. After all, they’re the ones who have compiled the 24-31 record and stand 9 1/2 games behind the first place Tribe.
While we may not like it, we all know that this is Ozzie’s way and it’s not going to change as long as he’s at the helm of the Sox. Let’s just hope this season of ugliness doesn’t get any uglier.