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

June 2010 Archives

Ozzie talks LeBron and Chicago

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we-are-all-witnesses-lebron-james-546522_1024_768.jpgKANSAS CITY, Mo. - The "Summer of LeBron'' isn't just captivating to the entire NBA world.
White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen made his feelings about the Blackhawks very obvious throughout their Stanley Cup run, and on Wednesday, gave his opinions on where free agent LeBron James should opt to play.
"Chicago,'' Guillen responded, without hesitation. "C'mon LeBron, please. New York, too many people in New York. New York, nobody will care about him. He's just another guy in town. He's not going to be bigger than Derek Jeter. So he's No. 2 now. Maybe No. 3 behind [Jorge] Posada, then [Mariano] Rivera.''
Guillen lives in Miami in the offseason, and used to have season tickets to Heat games. Even with his home there, however, he gave the thumbs down on joining Miami.
"Miami, there are too many tourists there,'' Guillen said. "People go to Miami games on and off. Chicago is a real sports city.''
As far as James staying in Cleveland?
"That's his call,'' Guillen said. "I think Chicago will be very good for him. You want to see something very nice, you win in Chicago. There are a lot of special things. You win in New York, people are like, 'Alright, so, we got 26 championships in baseball.' You win in Chicago that's something special. Ask the Blackhawks, ask the White Sox.
"You win there, you're special. Half the '85 Bears are dead, and they're still rooting for them. Every '85 Bear goes out and eats for free every day.''

The latest on Dunn and the Sox

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p1_dunn-si-mangin.jpgKANSAS CITY, Mo. - Ozzie Guillen was insisting that the White Sox still didn't need help.
His general manager? Well, Ken Williams obviously has other ideas.
The Sun-Times first reported late Monday night that the Sox had not only been coveting Washington Nationals left-handed power-hitter Adam Dunn, but according to sources, names had been talked about.
While it's unlike Williams to leave fingerprints on a possible trade target, the market on Dunn seems to be escalating quickly. Enough so that the Washington media was reporting that the Sox even had a scout at Tuesday night's game between the Nats and the Braves in Atlanta.
Guillen, however, was all for standing pat.
"Not right now,'' the Sox manager replied, when asked about adding to the product. "We need them to keep playing the way they are. I don't think right now we're desperate for anything. We're fine where we are. We'll see, maybe later on down we'll need somebody, maybe not.''
It might have been quiet on the Sox' end before their second game in the Royals series, but that wasn't the case with Dunn and the Nats.
A Washington Post website reported that one team source said of Nationals GM Mike Rizzo that he "would be open to anything that makes sense.''
Dunn, himself, then had to answer the usual questions that bombard players this time of season. Especially a player that will be a free agent at the end of the season, and has not been able to get an extension worked out to keep him in D.C.
"I hate talking about it every day, because it's nothing that I can control," Dunn told local reporters. "I hate talking about it. That was one of the reasons why I wanted to get something done, to avoid this.
"That's a problem when you sign two-year deals and stuff like that. This is the stuff I've been trying to avoid. I hate it. It seems like every single year I have to talk about it. There's nothing I can do about it. Why talk about it?''
Dunn reiterated that he didn't want to be a full-time designated hitter in the American League, but as Guillen showed with both Ken Griffey Jr. in 2008, and then Alex Rios last year - both mid- to late-season additions, he is well versed on how to keep everyone happy.
Dunn can play some first base, and even some right field if need be, as well as getting a few days a week in the DH spot.
"I've got enough confidence with the players to let them know the situation, how we're going to use it,'' Guillen explained, when asked about his ability to accommodate players. "That's why I don't worry about it. I let [Williams] do whatever he wants to do. He'll tell me, 'Hey, I got this guy in mind, what do you think? What do you think if I try to do this?' But in the meanwhile, I say 'Hey man, whatever you want, we're here to manage them, we're here to coach them, and we'll make it work.' ''
The Dunn sweepstakes were initially believed to be with just the Sox and the Angels as the frontrunner, but that has also changed a bit, with "a handful of teams'' now expressing interest. Not good news for the Sox, who might not be able to put a package together to sway Washington in their direction.
Either way, Guillen won't count on it happening until he sees it with his very own eyes.
"I think Kenny is doing stuff the way he does because as soon as it starts with the rumors - that's why I laugh when rumors go around that we're going to do this, we're going to do that,'' Guillen added. "Because he's the type of guy that yes, whenever there are rumors out there, you expect too quick and nothing happens.
"When he does stuff, he asks what we need, what we want, and he keeps it real quiet, all of a sudden we got a uniform hanging in the lockers. He knows exactly when it's time to move on or make a move, get somebody that can make a lot of difference. The way he does it, he doesn't want anyone to know exactly what he's doing. It's not just media-wise, but baseball-wise.''

CarlosZambrano.jpgKANSAS CITY, Mo. - Whether it's the Cubs organization, Cubs fans or Chicago baseball followers in general, Ozzie Guillen wasn't going to single anyone out.
But what he did insist on Tuesday, was the relationship between the White Sox manager and Cubs pitcher Carlos Zambrano was being completely misunderstood.
Guillen was asked if he had spoken to the suspended North Sider since they had dinner together Friday night, just hours after Zambrano was pulled out of the game against the Sox after a first-inning meltdown and sent home, with Guillen replying, "No. My wife [Ibis] did [Tuesday] morning, talked about business.''
Guillen then cleared the air on exactly what that dinner was about, as well as how Zambrano has been handling the suspension and what now seems like some sensitivity training.
"I think what he's doing is the right thing,'' Guillen said. "A lot of people - I'm not going to say the Cubs - a lot of people made it out [like we went to dinner to talk about it]. No, we went to dinner because of my wife's business. We didn't go to dinner for me to talk to him about what happened. The last thing we talked about is what he did. We talked about life, about being in Venezuela, we talked about a project my wife has for him back home, and obviously when that thing happens, it was that day we had dinner.
"I know a few people were upset or don't like it. We planned the dinner because my wife had to talk to him about lot of different things. My wife does a lot of [charity] stuff for him in Venezuela.''
Guillen said if the circumstances were different, like "If I see Carlos hitting one of my players or we fight that day against Carlos, then I wouldn't have dinner with him, that's not the right way.''
But because it was a business meeting first and foremost, Guillen felt it was fine.
"He's doing what he should be doing, [go] for help,'' Guillen said. "Be sure you talk to the team and move on.''
While the Cubs have been tight-lipped about specifically what kind of help Zambrano was getting, Guillen made it sound like it was the same type of sensitivity training he went through in 2006.
"I don't think you're going to change,'' he said. "For me [sensitivity training], that didn't work out s---. I'm the same. But in the meanwhile, it helped. My problem was that the [sensitivity trainer] listened to me, I didn't listen to him. In the meanwhile, when you make a statement and you're willing to do something, you have to back it up. If you told your team, 'Hey listen, I apologize, I'm sorry,' and you mean it and move on, people will let you move on. You have to be careful if you make a statement and [you don't follow through], then you have to be careful, 'Hey last week you said this, what happened now?'
"I think Carlos is doing the right thing. I think the Cubs are doing the right thing. But enough is enough. Carlos has already talked with the Cubs. Everything is good with the Cubs - I don't say great, but it's better, everything is on the table. I don't want people to bring it up every time, every minute.''

Bobby_Jenks.jpgGood thing the White Sox have options.
Prior to Sunday's series finale with the Cubs, the South Siders announced that closer Bobby Jenks was placed on the Major League Bereavement/Family Medical Emergency List, with the right-hander away from the team because of a family medical emergency with his wife since Friday.
When Jenks is expected back? According to manager Ozzie Guillen, the pitcher should take however long he needs.
"We have guys that have closed games,'' Guillen said. "J.J. [Putz] did it before, [Tony] Pena closed a game for us before, and [Matt] Thornton is one of the best pitchers in the game out of the bullpen. I don't worry about that, but there's no doubt, when Bobby is here, our bullpen is a lot better because everything fits in a better spot. In the meanwhile, we know it's family first and we got people out there.''
Guillen said that he spoke to Jenks, as did general manager Ken Williams, and while he could be back during the Kansas City series, "It's not a big deal, but I told him make sure he takes care of his family and his wife,'' said Guillen.
In his absence, the Sox purchased the contract of left-handed reliever Erick Threets from Class AAA Charlotte. They wanted another left-hander because Thornton now moves to the closer role, which would leave only Randy Williams as a lefty specialist in the later innings.
The 28-year-old Threets was 1-0 with a 0.53 ERA and two saves in 14 relief appearances with the Knights this season.
"It's still kind of in the I don't know stages,'' Threets said of his opportunity. "I'm up here to help out for a little bit, and whatever happens, happens. I'm just happy to be in consideration to fill in.''

No thanks

So now that the Sox are back in the Central Division race and are now potential buyers, it was only obvious that Guillen was asked what he would like added to his roster.
His response?
"Nothing,'' Guillen said. "When I talked to Kenny earlier in the Winter Meetings and earlier in White Sox fest, I always liked this ballclub. I don't know why, but I did. I like the ballclub sometimes, and I don't like the players. I like what we have. When we was bad I looked at the lineup, and I showed the beat writers the lineups. We don't need anything. I hope we just continue to play [well].''

Oz talks Zambrano after their Friday dinner

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zambrano-thumb-300x362-50575.jpgOzzie Guillen didn't want to get too deeply into Cubs business, but the fact was the White Sox manager is - knee-deep into it to be exact - because of his friendship with Carlos Zambrano.
Following the volatile Zambrano getting yanked from the Friday game after a first-inning meltdown in the dugout directed at teammates, and then the subsequent announcement he was suspended by the Cubs, there was still the little matter of would the pitcher keep the dinner date he had set with Guillen and his family later that night.
He did, and it wasn't a meal short on dinner conversation.
"I asked what happened,'' Guillen said. "He told me exactly what happened. I can easily say because if I say what he told me, at least I can leave it to him. He was upset with a lot of the team. That was it. I told him what to do, to wait a couple days. He will do what I tell him to do. Face it like a man. Don't turn back on this problem. Face it like a man. 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 got to respect people's ways, and that's the intensity this kid brings.''
Guillen wanted to clear the air on his comments from Friday, and the fact that he said he could handle a guy like Zambrano. He was trying to say he could handle any player.
"I said that I could handle anyone in baseball,'' Guillen explained. "All of a sudden, it sounds like I was telling Lou Piniella he can't handle stuff. That's bulls---.''
While Guillen agreed with the punishment coming down on the right-hander, when it was first going on in the dugout, he would have changed one decision.
"Lou did the right thing, tell the guys 'move on' and 'go away, go home,' '' Guillen said. "If it was me, I would tell my coaches, 'Stay away. I want to see them fight.' I said that with J.D. [Jermaine Dye] and [Orlando] Cabrera [back in 2008]. 'Stay away from that, if they want to fight, let them go.' At least they show some fire. Happened in Kansas City.''
Guillen pointed out the run-ins he had with Carl Everett and Damaso Marte back in the day, and how he handled it.
But he also said that if it meant more wins against the Cubs this season, he's all for more dugout meltdowns from the North Siders.
"Good, I hope they fight again today,'' Guillen said. "I told Carlos to come to the game today and just take batting practice so I won't have to deal with that.''

carlos-zambrano-breaks-a-baseball-bat1.jpgIf the Cubs can't handle pitcher Carlos Zambrano and his antics, there's a manager on the other side of town that would welcome him with open arms.
"Yes I can, yes I can, why not?'' White Sox skipper Ozzie Guillen replied, when asked if he could handle a player like Zambrano. "This is not tampering either. He asked me a question and I answered it. I can manage anybody. I can. Why not? You go about your stuff, you believe in yourself, you believe in respect. I'm not afraid [to manage] any player in baseball because I'm going to give them all the respect I can to perform for me.''
Although it might be tough for Guillen to be objective in the case of Zambrano, especially because the two have become good friends and were even expected to go to dinner Friday night. So when Guillen watched his friend have a meltdown in the dugout after a four-run first and get in the face of Derrek Lee, a lot went through Guillen's mind.
"I kind of like it,'' Guillen said. "Boxing is going so bad, if Don King sees that he will put that in Vegas. Those are two big boys. That always happens when teams aren't playing well, stuff, the intensity of the game. That can happen a lot. Coming out here and playing in this type of game with the fans out there, all the media around, that's part of the game. It's not the first time it happened, and I think it won't be the last time it happens. It's something that's always around in baseball. I know in a couple of days it will be fine. Carlos will be out there, and Derrek Lee will be behind him and whatever happened there. A lot of people will take this over the top, but over the years when you play 162 games and you're not playing well stuff goes that way.''
Guillen has become a sort of advisor for Zambrano, even talking to him when the Cubs moved him to the bullpen, but asked about what advise he had for him now?
"Nothing. That's part of the game,'' Guillen said. "That's the way he is. If I see him, that's the way he is and you're not going to change that. Now he has to come back to the team and talk to his teammates I guess. It's not an easy situation, but he will be alright.''
Whether or not the two had dinner with each other, well, considering Zambrano was sent home during the game by Lou Piniella, Guillen pointed out that there was no reason why they shouldn't.
"I have plans to go to a charity event and have dinner with him. He got a lot of time to make the reservation,'' Guillen said laughing.
"A lot of people don't know Carlos. To me, Carlos is a great guy. When he puts his uniform on he like to compete, likes to do well. Off the field he's a different cat.''

lou-piniella.jpgRegardless of how this weekend plays out between the Sox and the Cubs, all eyes will be on the managers. Both Ozzie Guillen and Lou Piniella have had their time on the hot seat in 2010, with talk about Piniella's future now front and center.
Asked on Thursday if he felt bad for his good friend Lou, it was classic Guillen.
"No, he's making $4 million, almost $5 million,'' Guillen said. "Nobody felt bad for me when we were struggling. Don't take me wrong, I love that man, I really do, I love that man. I love the general manager [Jim Hendry]. It's not easy when you go through this. I know how hard it is. But do I feel bad? They're not in my division. I wish it was Detroit or Minnesota.
"There's one thing about it, I don't think anybody felt bad when we were struggling, when they were asking Kenny to fire me. That's this job. I think Lou's handling it better than me. Lou's had a losing team before, he knows how to handle it. He wants his team to play better. It's one thing about Lou, I was listening to the radio and I know the Cubs fans were criticizing Lou when he said, 'I'm doing everything I can with this ballclub to make it better.' He's telling the truth. There's only so much you can do as a manger. You can change lineups and you can try everything but if that thing don't work, you can't do anything more about it. You've just got to keep plugging in and hopefully those guys turn around and play better.''

Ozzie-Guillen.jpgIt's the fairytale that won't die.
A columnist at the other downtown newspaper was reporting a scenario in which current Sox skipper Ozzie Guillen would be managing the Florida Marlins in 2011, with Tony La Russa out at St. Louis and back on the South Side.
Guillen was willing to take a trip to Fantasy Island and discuss it on Wednesday.
"Miami, next year? I have a contract here,'' Guillen said. "That's up to [board chairman] Mr. Jerry Reinsdorf and [general manager] Kenny Williams. If they want me to be here, I'll be here. If they don't, it's one thing I know. If I'm not here, for sure I'll be managing as soon as I got fired. It will be with the Tiburones de La Guaira in Venezuela. I guarantee I will manage that [Winter League] team, and I will make a lot of money. As soon as they fire me, they would be calling me, looking for someone to manage them.
"Speculation can be out there, people could be talking about all this stuff, I'm happy here. I never deny I want to be manager here for the rest of my life. That's not my call. That's not my call in two years. At least I could be something behind the scenes, if I get fired out of here. I don't want that. This conversation went through my family. What my wife thinks is best for the family is what I'm going to do. I don't want to be making millions and millions of dollars somewhere else and be unhappy or my family be miserable. The fact that my kids are here in Chicago, so many years here, we like it here, I just want to stay here. As long as they want me to, as long as I'm happy and I feel comfortable with it, I'll be here. Money talks, because that's what we're working for. I'm not here to be famous.''
The kicker in this, however, would be even if Guillen was fired, would Williams want another big-personality manager like La Russa?
Guillen did add, "You never know in baseball. I thought I was going to play the rest of my career with the White Sox, and Jerry Reinsdorf kicked my butt out of here.''

Third options

Guillen admitted that trying to get 21-year-old rookie Dayan Viciedo at-bats at first base with Omar Vizquel playing so well is a "concern.''
"Yes I am concerned, because [Tuesday] night I was sitting on the bench and asking Joey [Cora] how we were going to find [Viciedo] some at-bats,'' Guillen said. "In the meanwhile, the way we were playing, the way we are right now, I don't think about getting people at-bats. I think about winning some games. I'm pretty sure he'll be playing against lefties. How many lefties we're going to face over the next couple of weeks, I don't know.
"Vizquel is playing very well. I think everybody on the field is playing pretty well. I'm going to go with a lineup to win games. We've got to find at-bats for Viciedo. I'm going to try to find the way that we can. I'm not going to waste my time thinking about Viciedo's at-bats. I'm going to find out how to win some games. Maybe Kenny's got something in mind in sending him down or keeping him here and seeing how many at-bats he can get. I can't promise anything about how many at-bats he's going to get.''

Kenny.jpgThe last time Ken Williams met with the media following a road trip, it sounded more eulogy than state of the team address.
But there was the White Sox general manager on Tuesday, hours before the start of the Atlanta series, far from the guy that insisted "some changes are coming.''
Not even close.
And thanks to what his boss told members of the Chicago media on Saturday, Williams is going to hold board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf to it.
It was Reinsdorf who was asked about the ability to add payroll this season, and answered with a "Yes. I also think this team might be good enough the way it is, if they keep playing this way.''
"Well, all I know is what I read in the paper the other day when you guys asked [Reinsdorf] about it,'' Williams said. "I was glad to hear that was a possibility. That's the first I heard about it. I'm glad it's on record. It's on record from what I understand.''
That's not all that's on the record now.
Williams was very adamant in making sure that Sox fans understand that even when players are sent out of the South Side in a deal, it's reshuffling, not rebuilding. In other words, it's not in Williams' DNA to blow-up a team.
"We are always trying to add,'' Williams said. "There have been a few occasions over the years going back to when we sent Ray Durham to Oakland, that I can say honestly that was a subtraction we had to make for payroll purposes. But since then, even in 2007, you guys didn't believe it, but we were actively in the trade market to add. We knew we would have a tough time coming back that year, but some times you add for the year after that thinking you have a good core.
"We have not been in the mode for selling for the sake of selling for a long, long time. Even if the perception is we are moving this player or that player, it's still with the mindset to win the next year. We are incapable as long as I'm sitting in this chair of thinking any other way.''
The usual suspects on the Sox wish list are a left-handed bat and another left-handed reliever for the bullpen to bookcase with Matt Thornton.
"Well, one of the things I keep talking to the coaches about are always additions, possibilities, variations of the team we have now,'' Williams responded, when asked about the lefty bat. "The thing that they run up against and we get tripped upon is who they are going to replace, even if you do go out and get player X, Y or Z. Who are you going to replace? We have a lot of confidence in everybody out there. Everyone out there is getting better and starting to return to form, so where does that person fit?
"If there's an obvious choice, you certainly go down that road. If it's less obvious, then how does that person fit in and can they fit into that role that [manager] Ozzie [Guillen] would need that particular player to play, which would be a part time type role. Or is that guy an everyday guy and can't keep his timing in that kind of role?
"There's a lot to weigh in and I think over the next numbers of weeks, this team will show me more of either consistent play or show more of the inconsistent play that has been prevalent. To me, you keep pushing and trying to add to the puzzle until you are forced not to.''
Williams already knows what the other end of that spectrum was like, especially since he was just there a few weeks ago.
"Yeah, it's like sharks in the water and buzzards hovering over,'' Williams added. "I'm usually one of the buzzards hovering over. It has been an interesting experience to be on the opposite end. I can't say I have enjoyed it.
"I didn't expect us to be back to .500 this quickly, so this team has responded and showed some resiliency. At this time, those efforts should be commended and acknowledged in the form that, 'Ok, they are going to keep pushing, we have to see what the possibilities are out there to help them out.''
In other words, time to rip the "For Sale'' signs down.

Morning Cup of Joe

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2879639.jpgMorning Cup of Joe

1. John Ely on June 6 - 4 ER in 5 innings pitched - no-decision

2. John Ely on June 12 - 4 ER in 5 innings pitched - loss

3. John Ely on June 17 - 7 ER in 4 2/3 innings pitched - loss: Total damage in that time? 0-2 with a 9.20 ERA. Somewhere in Chicago, Phillip cries.

240193.jpgWASHINGTON - As far as manager Ozzie Guillen was concerned, all the talk about his relationship with his general manager is now over with.
Damaged or not, Guillen and Ken Williams are pushing forward.
"I don't have anything against Kenny - a lot of miscommunication, misunderstanding, a lot of disagreements but that's part of my job, that's part of our job. I think to me that thing is way behind. I got a lot of things to worry about. I got 25 [players], plus three kids and a wife. That's 29 people I have to worry about.''
Guillen's comments on Sunday, came in the wake of board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf admitting on Saturday that while Williams has never come to Reinsdorf and presented the idea of removing him from his post, the yelling match the two got into on June 8 had to be resolved.
"Yeah, I spoke to each of them separately,'' Reinsdorf said. "The stuff was in the paper and I said, 'you guys can't have this kind of bulls---. You have to work together.' That was basically it. Go make up. I didn't use those words. I said, 'We can't function if you are not going to get along. You can have your fights like you always have, but it can't continue because we can't function that way.' They both agreed and as far as I know, they are back to normal.''
Then again, what is exactly "normal'' when it comes to the traveling circus that is White Sox baseball?
"We continue to work, we talk a lot better, we communicate a lot better with the team,'' Guillen said. "It's nicer to come to work that way because it's not easy when you have the negativity and other stuff. Maybe because we win a couple games the last two weeks it makes things better but I think if we want to make this work, I have to do my job, he has to do his job. We got to communicate about the ballclub, do what we're supposed to do.
"As a friendship, hopefully gets better. It's not 100 percent better but it's getting there. How long is it going to take? Hopefully quick enough but it doesn't bother me. The only thing that bothers me about this is to make the players [not] get involved.''
Which they haven't.
To a man the last two weeks, the one message heard from the players has been an almost "just another day with this club'' philosophy.
As a matter of fact, the Williams- Guillen spat might have been the ultimate relief from a group that was playing with a lack of confidence, and looking tighter and tighter with each bad loss.
According to Matt Thornton, while Guillen might have been quitting on the friendship that he once shared with Williams, he never gave up on the team, no matter how low things got.
"Ozzie kept trying different situations, different lineups, different things out there, and [Guillen and the coaching staff] never quit,'' Thornton said. "But they never quit on us in 2007, and that was one of the worse situations I've been a part of. This team is way too talented - everyone has been saying it for two months - we were way too talented to be where we were. You're starting to see that talent rise to the top and get on a roll here.''
But there is an endgame in this whole Guillen-Williams fallout. At least an end-game that Guillen would like to see play out.
"Hopefully things move on,'' Guillen said. "If Jerry loves me that much, I need a couple more years on my contract, extend my contract.''
Guillen then laughed.
"Keep us in town,'' he added of the Williams-Guillen duo. "We grow up [together], we went through this before and I expect it to be better. Is it gonna be better? It couldn't be worse. I've moved on, we talk, hopefully we put that on the side.''

47.jpgWASHINGTON - If there comes a day where general manager Ken Williams wants to fire manager Ozzie Guillen, White Sox board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf won't get in the way.
"Well, that's my history,'' Reinsdorf said on Saturday. "The biggest mistake I ever made, but I would make it again, is I let Hawk [Harrelson] fire Tony LaRussa. I would hope Kenny would never come to that conclusion [with Guillen]. But you can't make a general manager have a manager he doesn't want.''
What Reinsdorf wanted to clear the air about on Saturday, however, was despite several reports - including one that appeared in the Sun-Times - that indicated the Guillen-firing scenario was already attempted by Williams, that has not happened, according to the Chairman.
"Kenny has never asked me to fire Ozzie,'' Reinsdorf said.
What he would say on the matter was that, yes, Williams and Guillen did get into a "yelling and screaming'' match on June 8, but in his estimation, he did not feel that it "almost came to blows in a heated shouting match,'' as one source told the Sun-Times last week.
"These guys were definitely yelling and screaming at each other,'' Reinsdorf did admit. "I wasn't there, but as far as I know, nobody else was there. I'm convinced that it never came close to blows. You have to be on top of someone. I mean, they were in there yelling at each other, which by the way, they have been doing for the last seven years.
"I sat there some time and listened to Kenny and Coop [pitching coach Don Cooper] or Kenny and Ozzie and thought what the [bleep] is going on here. Then it's all over and they are lovey-dovey after that.''
While Guillen or Williams didn't detail what involvement there was from Reinsdorf after the Sun-Times report about the June 8 incident, Reinsdorf admitted there were meetings with each of them in the following days.
"Yeah, I spoke to each of them separately,'' Reinsdorf said. "The stuff was in the paper and I said, 'you guys can't have this kind of bulls---. You have to work together.' That was basically it. Go make up. I didn't use those words. I said, 'We can't function if you are not going to get along. You can have your fights like you always have, but it can't continue because we can't function that way.' They both agreed and as far as I know, they are back to normal.''
If Williams does get to the point where he can no longer work with Guillen, it will fall on the GM to make that call, according to Reinsdorf.
"You can't make a manager have a coach he doesn't want,'' Reinsdorf said. "I can't make the head of the accounting department work with someone he doesn't want. I hate to think about it and I don't think it will ever come to it, and Kenny says he doesn't see it, but that's the way it works.''
Reinsdorf also wanted to set the record straight on ''Website Gate'' from the spring, and that it was Guillen's decision to halt the plans on that, and also addressed the idea that the Sox had somehow tried to hurt the draft status of Guillen's youngest son, Ozney, as was hinted in a tweet sent out by Guillen's middle son, Oney.
"I would get angry even if it wasn't Oney [who tweeted that],'' Reinsdorf said. "You can't tell someone not to draft some player. They wouldn't listen to you anyway. If you told teams not to draft someone, they would probably draft him higher.
"I was upset about that and I was upset about the comparison of Kenny's kid [Kenneth Jr.] being drafted higher [last year]. Kenny had nothing to do with that. Kenny last year and Ozzie this year, both said the same thing when asked about their kids and that was, 'Do what you want.' ''
As far as where the Guillen and Williams relationship is now, the two have been talking, but Guillen said the other day in Pittsburgh that the talks have been about "team'' business only.
"We talk about how good we played the past couple games, conversation about what's important thing for us for a month to get to where we want to get and see what happens,'' Guillen said.
What Reinsdorf cares about is that they can work together.
"I haven't followed up at all,'' he added. "I do know Kenny and Ozzie spent 45 minutes on the field talking. And I see the stuff Kenny is saying, and I see the stuff Ozzie is saying. So as far as I know, everything is OK. I didn't lay down the law to these guys. I don't want you to think [I said]: 'You must get along.' 'If we're going to be successful, you guy got to get along and work together.' That was all. It took me a minute to say that, if not less.''

600full-braveheart-screenshot.jpgWASHINGTON - If it were up to manager Ozzie Guillen, Jake Peavy would be sitting on the bench right next to him tomorrow afternoon, nothing more than a spectator.
Peavy, however, has decided to put some face make-up on and go all "Braveheart,'' pushing to make the start against the Nationals despite an MRI that showed inflammation and some fluid in the shoulder.
"I trust my players,'' Guillen said Friday. "I respect my players. I get along with my players even though people don't believe it. When he told me he was ready to go, I had to trust and believe him. I don't think he's going to put us or him in a spot to be hurt. We talked a lot about it, it was an easy decision. My idea was different than his idea, but like I said, he's a veteran pitcher, he knows what he has, knows how he feels, and that's the reason why he's going to pitch here.''
Guillen said his call was a trip to the 15-day disabled list for the hurler.
"I'm not a doctor, I'm not a general manager, I'm not a trainer and I'm not Peavy,'' Guillen said. "We go by ear and I talked to him about it, and I'd rather have him miss two starts than miss six starts. He promised me he would be fine, he's not going to lie to me, because nobody lies to us, he's going to pitch. I want him on the mound ... you want him on the mound.''
Peavy played catch before Friday's game, his first time throwing a baseball since he pitched in Wrigley Field last week. The fluid and discomfort have both subsided, but he did let it be known that the maintenance of this setback will be an on-going, likely all-season program.
"The bottom line is when something like this flares up, you probably have to stay on top of it all year,'' Peavy said. "That's the bottom line. The only way to get stuff better is time off. That's something we don't have the luxury to have in a baseball season. Every day players have to get out there every day and take a few days off here and there. Starters can take a few starts off and once they get to that, so be it. But we'll try to push through it.
"I want to be out there for the boys and I've said I feel like I've started to find a little bit of a groove and I feel like I went out there and although not on top of the game like I'd liked to be, but put together quality starts and winning games, and I hope that continues.''
Over his last four road starts, Peavy is 3-1 with a 5.74 ERA.
"You can't take a week off of anything of ever want to do the skilled thing and think you're going to be as sharp as you were,'' Peavy said. "But that's part of it. There's going to be zero excuse for not making the pitches I want. I don't want to talk about that after the game, win lose or draw. I'm going out there and expect to win, expect to make quality pitches and have enough muscle memory to find a way to win.''

Love for Lynn

Here's the latest from the best in the business Lynn Sweet on the First Fan -

e0015294_46dca7cebe7de.jpgPITTSBURGH - "Fluid in the shoulder'' just doesn't sound like it will end well.
Pitcher Jake Peavy, however, feels like a few extra days of rest is just "damage control'' and there is no reason why he won't be able to take the mound on Saturday against Washington.
"I believe I'm on schedule and going to pitch Saturday,'' Peavy said. "This is what I'm doing. I'm excited about that. There's some discomfort there, and we addressed it and hopefully a few extra days will get that out.''
Either way, the White Sox did have a bit of a scare the last few days, even sending Peavy to get an MRI on his throwing shoulder to make sure that pitching him was the right course of action. The news was good for Peavy, with inflammation with some fluid in the joint discovered, but the shoulder itself structurally sound.
"I take the post any time I can,'' Peavy explained on Thursday. "I'll be honest, too, with my employers and trainer and I admire the way they went about it. They knew exactly what was going on. They said, 'Listen, before we take any other measures, we want to make sure you're structurally sound.'
"You go in, and as uncomfortable and scary MRIs are at times, you wouldn't believe what fluid in your joint and shoulder capsule and that stuff could, at times you just think there's got to be something wrong if it hurts, but it's a little fluid here and there could cause some discomfort and pain and you go get fully checked out the way we did and find out your shoulder is structurally sound, that's such a huge mental block that's out of the way that you just battle some inflammation and fluid so you can go out there and fear or jeopardize your career. I admire the way we went about it and the doctor saw enough to think a few more days, I hope this calms down.''
It was great news as far as manager Ozzie Guillen was concerned, as well.
"We do everything as an organization, we do everything as a team to make sure we take care of him,'' Guillen said. "We let him know that my job, our job as an organization is to protect him the best we can and make sure he is there for us in the future, make sure he is there for us later. He feels great. He feels like he could have started for us [Thursday], but in the meanwhile, when you're a gamer, you want to be on the field no matter what. But it's my job to make sure that guy can be out there every day. We didn't want to take a risk. Thank God it's nothing serious, it's just soreness or whatever he had, and I'm glad he's going to start [Saturday] and miss just a couple of days.''
Peavy did say that the rehab work put in the last few days has increased his range of motion already, but the hope is that this is not a reoccurring problem.
"I'm still on the way and you talk about pitching and you're talking about damage control,'' Peavy added. "This is damage control.''

peavy_napkin_nights2.jpgPITTSBURGH - Mark Buehrle can still work on that home run trot, but it won't be coming on Friday against Washington Nationals phenom Stephen Strasburg.
Following the 7-2 win over Pittsburgh on Wednesday, manager Ozzie Guillen announced that a "tired arm'' has pushed Jake Peavy out of his scheduled start in the Pirates finale tonight, meaning Buehrle will be called into action.
That's unfortunate for Buehrle, who hit his first-career home run last year in Milwaukee, and joked about how much he was looking forward to stand in there against the 100-mph fastball of Strasburg.
As for Peavy, he brought up a "tired arm'' a few weeks ago, and the thought was that by changing his routine it was behind him. Obviously, that's not the case, as he might be pushed back all the way to Saturday if Guillen and the training staff don't like what they hear from him before the Pittsburgh game tonight.
"We don't know, TBA,'' Guillen said. "We're going to give [Peavy] a couple more days. He has a couple more days off. His arm is a little tired, if you can put it that way. They call it a tired arm. Some call it a tired arm, some call it a dead arm. We'll go by ear [Thursday], see how he's doing.''
What that means for Buehrle is that if there is a career homer No. 2 coming, it will have to be against Ross Ohlendorf (1-5, 3.28 ERA).

carlos-quentin.jpgPITTSBURGH - Right now, that bachelors degree in Poli Sci from Stanford isn't holding much weight for Carlos Quentin.
He should have thrown in a few Psychology classes along the way. Maybe then he would be able to explain why he has gone from 2008 MVP candidate to enigma in less than two seasons.
Because it's obvious the White Sox sure can't.
"I will keep playing Carlos, unless something happens to him, but we're going to pick our spots when to play him, we got guys that can help him, like [Mark] Kotsay, [Andruw] Jones, help him in the outfield,'' manager Ozzie Guillen explained, when the topic of Quentin came up on Wednesday. "I'm going to give him the best opportunity to go through the season. He's the one that will dictate to me how much he wants to play. If he gets good at-bats, hopefully we can get ... every day we come to the ballpark, we hope Carlos comes out of this. We've seen some signs, but then the next couple of days - done.
"Hopefully he can come with the right frame of mind every day. Hopefully he doesn't put doubts in himself. I'm going to give him his at-bats. We expect good things out of him every day.''
And they have every day since 2008.
The problem is it's not being seen.
After hitting .288 with 36 homers and 100 RBI in that magical '08 season, Quentin's 2009 was filled with a slow start and then a slower left foot. Plantar fasciitis hampered him most of the year, allowing him to only play in 99 games and hit .236 with 21 homers.
But the foot injury aside, there were warning signs even last season that Quentin's biggest obstacle on the baseball diamond was not the opposing pitcher as much as himself.
''Q has always been a guy where -- I think it's probably why Arizona felt they were capable of giving him away -- was they felt he was an over-analyzer,'' hitting coach Greg Walker said last last season. ''He's the first to admit it, that he is a student of the mechanics of the swing, sometimes to a fault. [In 2008] he figured it out, grabbed something and ran with it. ... We need to have him look in the mirror, remember what worked in 2008, grab it and stick with in through hell or high water.''
Quentin entered Wednesday's game with the Pirates 1-for-10 on the current road trip, hitting .201 on the year with eight homers.
Not exactly what the Sox were hoping for when they made it a point this offseason that they needed both Quentin and Alex Rios to step up to the challenge in 2010. One half of the equation has. Quentin? Well, the wait continues.
Earlier this season, Diamondbacks color analyst Mark Grace said of Quentin that from what he saw of him in his playing days with the outfielder in Arizona was that if Quentin had a first good at-bat, the sky was the limit that night, but a bad first-bat to start a game? Have fun trying to get through the dark clouds.
Quentin's first at-bat on Wednesday, he grounded into a double play. Ugly in every way. His second at-bat he picked up the RBI single, lacing the baseball to left field. In the sixth, an RBI double just off the top of the center-field wall.
So maybe there has been growth. Baby steps, but growth.
Guillen was asked how much Quentin's struggles have hurt the team this season, and replied, "Well it doesn't hurt me, it hurts him, too. It's not easy to rebound that well, I think it takes him a little longer than anybody else to be what he was. We've got three or four months of baseball to turn it around, but in the meanwhile, we have to make sure we give him the best opportunity, put him in the best spot, to produce. That's what we're looking for.''

mlb_g_guillen_williams_600.jpgPITTSBURGH - It was hard to guess which was more shocking to several White Sox players as they headed to Pittsburgh Monday evening: that Ken Williams was on the team flight, making his first road trip of the season or that the general manager was going out of his way to play nice with manager Ozzie Guillen.
Asked about the flight East to Pittsburgh, Guillen described it as "Fine.''
"I think we got to put everything on the side, continue to work with this ballclub,'' Guillen said of his professional relationship with Williams. "We have a job to do, and we got to respect our jobs. We have to
be professional with our job. We talk about it and we move forward. We have to move forward. You go backwards, and then you're not doing good for this organization. The only thing about this, our players don't even care about this. It's our job to move forward and to make this thing, I don't want to say happier, just make it what is was. How is it going to happen? We got to work on it.''
Guillen was asked if they spoke strictly about the team or if they also discussed their problems.
"Team,'' he replied. "We talk about how good we played the past couple games, conversation about what's important thing for us for a month to get to where we want to get and see what happens.''
This did come as a bit of a shock to some of the players, especially since most of them had heard about the confrontation last Tuesday.
While Guillen admitted that his players might know about the troubles between manager and GM, he knew it wouldn't bother them.
The one thing Sox players learn quickly is that it's about performance. The sideshows? Those are distractions that actually benefit the players.
"Not with us,'' Guillen replied, when asked if the off-the-field drama could be a distraction. "Maybe with another club. Not this club. I think we play better. We played better last 1½ weeks. But not at all. Very professional ballclub. Very easy-going guys. They don't care what happens off the field. Just perform. And I'm lucky. We're lucky to have the talent and kind of people we have because they could have made an excuse about the way they're playing.
"No, they don't care about that. They go out there and play the game. I control the stuff off the field.''
Guillen might have a point.
Since Williams and Guillen went all "Jersey Shore'' on each other, the Sox have won four of their last six games heading into the Pirates series.
"I don't think that thing is going to bother anyone because that's nobody's business,'' Guillen added. "As long as it's my job to make sure [the players] compete and stay away from that stuff that they're not concerned.''

vTiJeGzx.jpgCatcher A.J. Pierzynski came into Sunday night a member of the White Sox and unless something unforeseen takes place in the next few hours, enters Monday morning the same way - albeit with a lot more say in his immediate future.
Pierzynski's 10-and-5 rights kicked in, meaning the veteran has earned complete no-trade say on any deal the Sox want to make with the free agent-to-be.
"I don't think too much is being made of it because I have the right that if I don't want to go, I don't have to go,'' Pierzynski insisted. "I can't just be shipped without me having a say in the matter. I don't think it's overrated at all. I think it's one of the great rights you have as a player. Not a lot of guys get to that point and have this opportunity, so it's not overrated at all. It's something to be proud of, something to be excited about at the same time.''
According to Ozzie Guillen, Pierzynski was recently told by the manager that he wasn't going anywhere right now. Pierzynski's response?
"I have no idea,'' he said. "You have to talk to Ozzie about that.''
The question remains, however, will there be an attempt to move Pierzynski by the July 31 trade deadline and if so, would he resist?
"As far as the whole trade thing, it's out of my control,'' Pierzynski said. "Like I said, I'll just be glad when that day is here so I can stop talking about it every day.''

ozzie-kenny-whitesox.jpgHere are the basics from Ozzie Guillen on his relationship with Ken Williams before the start of the cross-town series.

"I wish I could keep my good quotes, because I think the media always let's the bad quotes go out - I said this in spring training: 'If we love each other in July the way we do now, we're playing good.' No matter what sport you play, what family ... when the thing doesn't go right, people are going to hate each other, people are not going to like each other, people are going to talk about each other. That's what losing does. A couple of people asked me the other day about chemistry and I was listening to the radio and what's funny is they believe in chemistry. I don't see any team lose 100 games and have chemistry. When you're in first place, the first thing that comes out is 'Well we got great chemistry, our clubhouse is very loose, our clubhouse is very nice, we get along with everyone.' But when you go the opposite, when you go to a losing team, you don't hear anything about it. The way we're playing right now it seems like we hate each other and everything is going bad and things don't go our way. I mean I'm not happy with the way we're playing right now. It's easy for me to go out and talk about my players or my players talk about me or the GM is mad or Jerry is disappointed, well we're all disappointed. Deep inside we're all mad because I thought things should be better now than they are. No matter what you do in life, if that thing doesn't go right, it's a bad feeling on yourself, thinking negative and don't believe what you're doing.''

On getting in a heated argument with Williams:

"Funny thing about it is I'm out of shape to fight anyone. Last time I fight I was 10 years old. There was a couple talks, nothing out of ... first of all I don't fight. I don't think we, or anyone, can go out there and resolve any problem fighting. We just talked about it, and that situation happened a couple days ago and that's it.''

"There are a lot of things that happened this year and we're not going to deny it, since spring training, a lot of disagreements between each other, but that doesn't mean we have personal problems. Personal problems, everyone has personal problems, but in the meanwhile, we respect each other the way we should. We still talk about the ballclub. One thing about it is the relationship between manager and GM in baseball, we played together, we grew up together, and that's the difference between another GM and manager and us. It's like a divorce, it's like a you're married - you argue with your wife, with your kids and then all of a sudden you turn the thing, blow it away and move on. Right now, there are a lot of things that have happened out there, I don't want to say miscommunication, a lot of disagreements, and they get to the point like we hate each other, well, I don't remember hating anyone. Is the relationship the same way it was? Not really, because a few things have happened in disagreements, but that's part of life.''

On can the personal relationship ever be like it was?

"I don't know, I don't know. I hope it does. We should, why not? People have a problem, they put it back together, and I expect that. If I'm going to be here long enough, we should.''

On if he would be surprised if Kenny left after this season?

"Yes, I'd be surprised. I don't say what reason. Kenny is doing a good job with this organization. You look at the balance, and you balance one thing to another, he's done more good stuff than bad stuff, and that's people's decisions, not my decisions. But I don't think that's the reason why he has to do it.''

On who would fire him if it came down to that:

"If that's going to happen, Kenny is the one who fires me. He's the one who hired me. Kenny hired me, He will fire me. Jerry hired Kenny. Jerry will fire Kenny. I hire my coaching staff. I fire my coaching staff. That's the way it is. I never will go over Jerry's head if Kenny has to make a decision. I not. They respect each other as a worker, and they respect each other as men. If Kenny made the decision, I guarantee you Jerry will be behind him 100 percent. Because that's the way I do stuff.''

chicago-white-sox-jake-peavy-kenny-williams1.jpgJake Peavy doesn't read the newspapers.
So it was news to the White Sox pitcher on Thursday that his general manager insisted a day earlier that "Some changes need to take place.''
Peavy offered up a bit of news of his own, letting it be known that while change is to be expected, if it's a full rebuilding mode the Sox are looking for, count him out.
"I just want a chance to win,'' Peavy said. "I believe it can happen here. I'm excited to be in the situation. Nothing's changed just because we haven't played well. I'm excited to be in a situation where you talk about it's not going to be a rebuilding process. If that were the case, I would certainly try to be moved, but that's the least of my worries.
"I want to try to get myself and the rest of this franchise headed in the right direction. I'm excited to be a Chicago White Sox. I've told you guys that since day one. I'm excited to play for an owner that's passionate and people who are in charge who care truly about winning. It's just unfortunate the situation we're in. I'm very happy to be here, but it is a nice feeling at the end of the day to understand when you can control your destiny, and have a say-so.''
That "say-so'' Peavy has involves the fact that he has a full no-trade clause for 2010 and may block trades to 14 clubs in 2011 and eight clubs in 2012, when he also earns 10-and-5 rights. The fact that he was making $15 million this year, as well as $16 million next and $17 million in 2012 also adds to the fact that he is not an easy piece to deal.
"It doesn't weigh on my mind, if that's what you're asking,'' Peavy said. "I understand that the situation I'm in, I'm a lot less movable than a lot of these other guys. I'm sure that it does weigh on their mind.''
As far as manager Ozzie Guillen was concerned, it should not only weigh on their mind, but force them to look in the mirror.
"And to be honest with you, when a general manager makes moves, a lot of people blame the general manager,'' Guillen said. "That's the players' fault. To be honest. When the players are playing good, they don't make any moves. They don't play well, it's time to move on and I never see any player, counting myself when I was playing, and always blame the general manager. But you look around, it's the players' fault. If we play the way we thought we were going to play, well I guarantee this team would be intact. But the way we play right now, he's got the right to do that.''
No one was disputing that.
"Obviously, something's got to give,'' Peavy said. "We've underachieved as a team, as a whole organization. I could not have imagined being in this situation at this point in the year, with what we came into camp with I was excited. Other than the captain [Paul Konerko] and Alex Rios I think everybody has had below their expectations this year. That's unfortunate but the bottom line is it happened and you've got to be professional, you've got to battle through it and you've got to roll on. Like I said, we've still got a lot of baseball left to play and stranger things have happened as you know.''
That they have, but the fact is the Sox have run out of patience, and there are bills to be paid.
"You definitely hope for better results sometimes, whether it's a team or player, but everyone has been going about it - we have a lot of veterans in this clubhouse that do it right,'' Konerko added. "If we had guys in here not doing it right you would see more problems.
"As far as changes, we know the business we're in and that just comes with it. They have jobs to do and we understand that. We're trying to play hard to make that not happen, but if it gets to that you have to understand it as a player.''

White flag finally goes up on the South Side

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ken.jpgIt was finally a day of admittance.
Forget what he told the players in a closed-door meeting a few weeks ago, White Sox general manager Ken Williams knows it's time for changes, and changes are coming.
"Some changes need to take place,'' Williams insisted before Wednesday's game with Detroit. "I don't know what and I don't when but some changes need to take place. Things aren't happening the way that we envisioned and when they don't happen the way you envision you've got to make an adjustment.''
Asked about a timetable on how quickly there could be player movement, he pointed out that the Sox are hostages of when other teams feel it's time to deal.
"I guess I'm not so much on my own time line as I am on other clubs' time lines,'' Williams said. "It's still the early part of June and a lot of clubs are trying to figure their situations out and determine whether they're in it or not in it or what kind of money they have to spend. There are a lot of variables that go into the mix so even if I want to do something, it's not always in my control. And even if something does arise, you always run the risk of, particularly in our case where there's a lot of desirable players that people seem to want ... why we can't put it together is a mystery to me. But other teams seem to want our players so I have to gauge whether something that comes along sooner is better off for our mix and chance to get in it or wait and be a little patient until July when kind of all the information is in and people are bidding against one another for our players.''
Baseball Economics 101.
"It absolutely is [about economics],'' Williams said. "But the more the summer wears and the closer we get to July 31, teams start to realize whether they're in it or not and the economics of their situation becomes a little clearer.''
There seems to be a certain amount of clarity in the clubhouse, as well.
"I don't know if we're going to stay with the same guys or not,'' outfielder Alex Rios said. "I try not to put much thought in it if it's going to happen or not, but this is a business. We all know that.''
As far as full-fledged fire sale, that's not in the cards. It's about trying to lighten the load on the S.S. South Sider first, getting rid of the free agents-to-be and other inflated contracts.
"You just try to do the best you can in a given year and in '08 we made the playoffs,'' Williams said. "Last year wasn't so good and this year, so far, isn't what it was supposed to be. I guess the good thing about that is there are a number of players out there that are young players that have high ceilings and a lot of potential. So, we're not talking about tearing something down. If we do something it will be along the lines of shuffling the deck with the expectation that we're going to add impact guys to help us win.''
But first comes the "tearing'' down stage. In other words, admittance that mistakes were made.
"It is what it is,'' Williams added. "I have to listen. It's not that I want to, but I'm not blind.''

The Cold War continues

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white_sox_kiss.jpgOne of them has to go. It's time for White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf to step in and decide which.

The struggle between general manager Ken Williams and manager Ozzie Guillen was cute at first. Team Edward vs. Team Jacob.

It seems like only yesterday that Williams inexplicably threw the choice of signing or not signing Jim Thome into Guillen's lap at SoxFest -- in a public forum after Guillen thought the Sox already had decided to pass on the veteran slugger.

On Tuesday, there was very little debate about where the Guillen-Williams relationship has gone. First it was "Twitter-gate" and the resignation of Guillen's son Oney from the Sox organization in March, then Guillen and Williams rarely speaking, and now rock bottom -- ugly and embarrassing, and again personal because it involves family.

Guillen's youngest son, Ozney, was selected by the Sox in the 22nd round of the baseball amateur draft Tuesday.

Feel-good story? Try a slap in the face filled with conspiracy theory.

Some scouting agencies had Ozney projected as high as a fourth-round talent coming out of Monsignor Edward Pace High School in Florida.

After the pick was announced, Ozzie Guillen was asked if he thought Ozney would sign with the Sox or take the full baseball scholarship that awaits him at the University of South Florida.

"Nah, 22nd round?" Ozzie said. "I give my kid 50 grand just to go to school. I got 50 grand in my pocket to send my kid to go to Niketown. Or buy something. ...

"I don't know [what happened]. I really don't put my nose in that.

Surprised? Of course I'm surprised. I'm not worried about that. What happened, why? That's up to people who know why, but I'm not going to waste my time investigating or asking people what happened. I got a lot of things to worry about." So why the bad feelings?

At least one of the Guillens -- tweeting brother Oney -- made it clear why he thought Ozney slid.

"And u told people to stay awya (sic) from him. U would," Oney Guillen tweeted Tuesday, obviously accusing members of the Sox organization of trying to sabotage Ozney's draft placement.

Don't think the Guillens have missed the fact that Williams' son, Kenneth Williams Jr., was selected in the sixth round of the 2008 draft in what ESPN's Baseball Draft Insider Keith Law described as "the worst pick of the day." "[He] wasn't on most teams' draft boards, although two or three other teams appeared to have had him inside the 10th round," Law wrote of the younger Williams. "It is hard to imagine that he would have been their fifth-round pick if his name was Kenny Smith ..." The younger Williams has hit .114, .255 and .228 through his first three years in the Sox system.

Sox scouting director Doug Laumann was asked about Ozney's freefall and the Guillen family's disappointment.

"Well, you know, it's a little bit of everything, I would guess," Laumann said. "I have a son myself, and you are always wishing the best for your family and your kids. There's always going to be a level of disappointment regardless of where you go. I think Ozzie respects the job we do, and we certainly respect the job he does. We stacked them on the board the way they were supposed to be taken, and that's what we ended up doing." While the product on the field remains stagnant, the real problem is a relationship gone very bad. Big personalities like Guillen and Williams can only co-exist for so long.

That leaves it up to Reinsdorf, arguably one of the best owners in the game, to weigh who is more important. Williams has been an aggressive GM, but the Sox couldn't get over the top until Guillen was named manager.

It's a mess that needs cleaning. Choose wisely.

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