Chicago Sun-Times
with sports reporters Daryl Van Schouwen and Chris De Luca

Welcome to the South Side, Nick

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I highly doubt that Nick Blackburn has felt a bus ride over his back, only to be thrown in reverse and backed up over him again.
Then again, in the land of "Minnesota nice,'' he's probably never come across the likes of an Ozzie Guillen.
What the Twins pitcher now knows - a fact that the rest of major-league baseball has been getting used to the last five years - is not only will Guillen call-out his own players, but anyone within his shouting distance. That includes security guards at The Cell, Alex Rodriguez, former No. 2 columnists for the Sun-Times and his own children.
It was after a loss to Minnesota last week in which Blackburn went five innings, allowing two runs on eight hits, that Guillen was asked about the pitcher's outing.
"I don't give credit to the guys that don't deserve credit,'' Guillen said of Blackburn. "Believe me, I give credit to the pitcher when they deserve it. We didn't get the clutch hit, it wasn't because of the way he pitched.''
So when the subject of Blackburn came up again on Monday night, knowing they will face the pitcher again in the play-in game, Guillen had a chance to do some damage control. Yeah, right.
Turn key, start bus, drive forward.
''I'll take my chances against him if he pitches the way he pitched against us last time,'' Guillen said. "He didn't pitch well. When you've got the bullpen warming up in the second inning ... we just don't approach him in the right way.''
It's now up to Blackburn to prove Guillen wrong.
The bar has been set, "Minnesota Nice'' is miles away. Sink or swim, Nick. Sink or swim.

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Who the @%$& cares what your loose cannon of a manager thinks? All I know is he beat your squad last week. Credit, or no-credit. You beat a uninterested last-place team yesterday. Good for you! We'll take our OWN CHANCES tonight...

Can someone tell me what's controversial about this? The Twins had a guy warming in the 2nd inning because the Sox were hitting the ball very hard off of Blackburn.

Ozzie will take his chances this time around if Blackburn pitches the same way. What's the issue with that? What's there to be offended about or perceive as a slight?

MN-ice, to be fair, who the @%$& cares what you think, and that "loose cannon" of a manager has more titles than Ron Gardenhire in much less time. Just throwing it out there.

Here's some advice. Calm down. Enjoy the game tonight, and don't use "we" when talking about the Twins. You're not on the field...unless you're Nick Blackburn and we don't know it...

Let's see now... Ozzie sez: the twins pitcher "doesn't deserve any credit because his own hitters didn't get the clutch hit" and "they didn't approach him in the right way." how is that the fault of the opposing pitcher? the guy did what he's supposed to do-- get the other team's batters out. if that happens again tonight, he can "not give him credit", again while he packs his bags for the off-season. what an idiotic comment. he practically adopts the stupid "pirahnas" (a bunch of nobody players) as his own, but a young pitcher shuts his team down in a tight, must-win game last week and gets no credit. if I were blackburn, I guess I'd take it as compliment, considering the source. (as in, I have no clue how to beat the guy). i like ozzie, but sometimes the drivel spewing from his mouth is way off the mark.

Yo MN-ice, how about you stay up there in Minny Mouse Sota where you and the scrappy 'blue gills' belong. Tonight will be a historic night for Chicago baseball. The Cubs and the White Sox will be heading to the postseason together for the first time in ages. We will have the last laugh, just like in 2005 when our "loose cannon" of a manager took home the gold. Good luck tonight at the ear-swelling U.S. Cell ballpark; it's gonna be crazy as the Chi-Sox win the A.L. central!!!

I like how all the Sox players are saying that the Twins won't be able to bloop our way to a win, when that is what they did a couple of years ago to win the Series, plus a few calls from the umps. Plus, keep making fun of Minnesota Nice. How many people have been shot today in Chicago?

Rocco if the sox or the cubs could make it into the playoffs with the same consistency as the Twins, tonight would have no "historical" significance. (i.e. if both didn't historically suck, it would have happened by now). I love Chicago, but the average baseball IQ of fans must be near the bottom of the league. GO TWINS

A few calls from the umps doesn't equate to a 11-1 postseason record, and I have never been to Minnesota so sorry for the insults. I did live in Wisconsin for a while which was hell on earth. Not sure how many people where shot in the Chi today; hopefully none.

O.K. boys and girls, stop your fighting and crying. This is a play-in game, not some recess in St. Paul or Bridgeport.

I'd be quaking a little more if Harmon the Killah-brew was coming to old Comiskey or the Twins were throwing a young Dean Chance at us.

On the flip side of the coin, we are not exactly striking fear in MN with our incredible stretch drive and ability to scratch out runs when the cannons fall silent. Unfortunately, this year the Sox spell it "Bundt" yet it's been no cake walk.

Two good young pitchers. Morneau, Mauer and Co. vs. the Southside hitmen. The Wizard of Os vs. the G-man. Welcome to purgatory for baseball fans.

Let's all quit thumping our chests and watch a great evening of baseball from the Cell.

It should of never came down to this, but we all LOVE this game.

Well said, Andy. Batter up!

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This page contains a single entry by Joe Cowley published on September 30, 2008 10:12 AM.

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