Is Ozzie Gullen the Marlins’ top choice?

Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen comes out of the dugout to argue a call against the Chicago Cubs during the second inning at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago on June 27, 2010.  UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

According to the Chicago Tribune, White Sox skipper Ozzie Guillen is the Marlins’ top choice to replace Fredi Gonzalez as manager if he were to become available after the season.

The Marlins’ decision to keep Edwin Rodriguez as manager through the end of the year came about because ownership wants to see which managers are available after the season. Ozzie Guillen would be at the top of the Marlins’ list if he were available. …

It’s a little odd that the Tribune would have that sort of information hidden in an article and not provide more details as to why the Marlins want Ozzie. But maybe they don’t have any more information outside of that.

Guillen was a coach with the Marlins in 2003 when they won the World Series, so he has ties to Florida. There’s no doubt he could provide a spark for the Marlins young roster and he’s already proved that he can win. It wouldn’t be a bad fit.

One thing’s for sure, I would want front row seats to the first Ozzie-Hanley argument if Guillen does wind up in South Florida. What a fireworks display that would be.

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Ozzie Guillen, Carlos Zambrano and the pursuit of happiness

Following his dugout tirade on Friday that led to a suspension, Cubs’ starter Carlos Zambrano went to dinner with White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, who apparently gave the pitcher some sage advice on how to handle the situation.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

”I asked what happened,” Guillen said. ”He told me exactly what happened. … He was upset with a lot of the team. That was it. I told him what to do, to wait a couple of days. He will do what I tell him to do. Face it like a man. Don’t turn [his] back on this problem. … Go out, put your face on it and move on.

”What are they going to do to him? Trade, release or suspend him? At least when you face it like a man and admit you were wrong, everyone moves on. He didn’t kill anyone. He just made one mistake. We can’t criticize the kid for that. That’s the way he is. … We’ve got to respect people’s ways, and that’s the intensity this kid brings.”

”What are they going to do to him? Trade, release or suspend him?”

Well, yeah. This isn’t the first time Zambrano has flown off the reservation and chances are, it wasn’t the last either. He could be a great person off the field, but he still has to take responsibility for his actions on it. And he doesn’t get a free pass just because he’s an intense guy.

The other problem, of course, is that he has been awful on the mound this year. Whether he has pitched every fifth day or come out of the pen, Zambrano hasn’t gotten the job done. So when you throw a situation like the other night into the mix, where he’s berating teammates and not acting professional, it compounds the situation.

It’s great that Guillen is standing up for a player (albeit, a player on an opposing team), but the Cubs had every right to take action by suspending Zambrano and whatever they do with him from here on out will likely be justified. Considering how much they’re paying him, they should be getting better on-field production or at the very least, someone that can control is temper.


Photo from fOTOGLIF

Ozzie Guillen mocks Cleveland with ‘Bye-Bye LeBron!’ baseball message

From the Cleveland Plain Dealer:

Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen will never bite his tongue —- and in this case he won’t hold back his pen —- when he gave a fan his opinion on LeBron James and Cleveland’s unlucky sports history.

On ChicagoBreakingSports.com, it was learned that before he was ejected during the second inning of the Indians’ 5-4 loss to the White Sox on Wednesday, Guillen had some fun with an Indians fan.

Guillen signed a baseball with these messages:

“Bye Bye Lebron!! LOL”

“When are you going to win anything in sports? Please”

The LeBron message is kind of funny. The other one about Cleveland not winning anything is drenched in douche-baggery. (Not that Ozzie cares either way.)


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Ozzie Guillen warns opposing pitchers

Guillen

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen is sick and tired of his batters getting beaned, intentional or not.

Guillen was upset Sunday after Paul Konerko, Scott Podsednik and Gordon Beckham got hit by pitches by the Cleveland staff a night earlier in Chicago’s 8-5 win. Guillen acknowledged he didn’t think the Indians were throwing at them, but he’s had enough of watching his players get hit.

“Yesterday I get upset, they hit one guy and they throw in into another guy. I got upset. I know for a fact they’re not throwing at nobody, but enough is enough,” Guillen said. “I have Konerko bruised all over the place. Around the league, be careful because we’re going to hit people. I don’t care if I get suspended because I need to protect my players.”

The White Sox have been hit by pitches 45 times this season, fifth in the majors. The Indians have been hit 65 times, most in the majors.

I feel like this “retaliation” is happening a lot this season. When players get hit, the other team later throws at their star player. This seems to be happening even in games where the outcome is a forgone conclusion and I’m not sure why. The issue is only getting worse. When Prince Fielder was hit by Guillermo Mota, he tried to confront Mota in the locker room after the game. Of course, Mota only threw at Fielder because the Brewers hit Manny Ramirez.

I know Ozzie Guillen is trying to protect his batters by issuing this warning, but he should care about being suspended. Teams need their managers and Guillen knows this. White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf can’t be too pleased. He’s paying Guillen to manage games, not get thrown out of them.

If a player is crowding the plate then fine, brush them back. Guillen’s right in that if the pitcher is unable to do that without hitting the batter, then he shouldn’t even attempt it. It just makes for messy baseball and umpires need to wise up. They’re beginning to crack down on pitchers, but they’re going to need to be even stricter if this continues.

2009 MLB Preview: #16 Chicago White Sox

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Offseason Movement: GM Kenny Williams made a pair of trades that could help the Sox in the near future. Williams first traded outfielder Nick Swisher to the Yankees for Jeff Marquez and Wilson Betemit, then dealt veteran pitcher Javier Vazquez to Atlanta for catching prospect Tyler Flowers and infielder Brent Lillibridge. Marquez has a chance to earn the fifth spot in the rotation, although a hamstring injury could hold him back. The Sox also added veteran pitcher Bartolo Colon and young Cuban defector Dayan Viciedo.

Top Prospect: Gordon Beckham, SS
Beckham helped lead Georgia to a second-place finish at last year’s College World Series, hitting .474 with five dingers and 2 RBI in 14 games. At one point during the college season last year, he was also tied for the Division I lead for home runs with 28. Thus far in spring training, Beckham is 6-for-18 with four doubles and two home runs. The 22-year old prospect probably won’t make the Opening Day roster, but once he learns how to play second after making the switch from shortstop in college, Beckham is going to be playing big league ball.

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