Chicago Sun-Times
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Ozzie to the Cubs? Guillen talks about it with the Sun-Times

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453288401.jpgSEATTLE - Don't think that it at least wasn't brought up on Tuesday.
Just minutes after Ozzie Guillen heard the news that his good friend Lou Piniella was retiring following this season with the Cubs, the White Sox manager was in the hotel elevator with his wife, Ibis.
The same Ibis who had no problem letting general manager Ken Williams have a piece of her mind for almost 10 minutes back in spring training after the entire Oney Guillen Twitter-Gate saga.
"I knew this conversation would come because I came into the elevator and told my wife, 'You told me you wanted to stay in Chicago, well ... now it's time to make that decision.' '' Guillen said with a laugh, insinuating that if she was at all unhappy with a certain someone or life in general on the South Side, there was now an opening on the North Side.
But like he insisted a few years ago, the only way Guillen would ever skip to the other side of town and wear the Cubbie red, white and blue would be if Sox board chairman Jerry Reinsdorf no longer owned the team or died.
"Yes, because I think when people are loyal to you, you should be loyal back to those people,'' Guillen said, when asked if he still felt that way. "I don't think you can say you never know because you never know what will happen, but I would have to wait until Jerry Reinsdorf is no longer the owner of the White Sox.''
Unless Guillen gets the sense that the Sox don't want him back.
Guillen, who is in his seventh season as Sox skipper, is signed through 2011 with a club option for 2012. Ideally, he would like an extension before next year to not only give him some security, but also take the thought of leaving for another team anytime soon completely out of play.
"Well when you work you always wants an extension,'' Guillen said. "You always want to have a secure job. But right now, if I start talking about extension, if I start talking about that, I don't think it's the time right now to talk about it because the way we play, I should be worried about how we're going to win games, worried about what will happen this year, worry about my players. Because as soon as I go there and we start talking extension, that means I don't respect the players, I don't respect the fans - 'Well, now because he's winning he wants an extension ... ' No, I think the time will come.
"In the meanwhile, I have a contract for next year and we'll see what happens. I just want to win this thing and see what happens in the future.''
Guillen as Cubs skipper is not so far-fetched. If current general manager Jim Hendry sticks around, Hendry is one of the few GMs in the game that Guillen is friendly with. There's also a connection with some of their players, especially good friend Carlos Zambrano.
"I don't think I talk to many GMs in this game period,'' Guillen said. "I talk to [Hendry] a lot. I have a lot of friends over there, even players that are friends over there. It's time for [Piniella] to move on, but in the meanwhile, when you lose a guy like Lou, now you start thinking about you have to start over, who is going to be your manager, what are you going to do. I think this organization [the Cubs] will go the right way. They have a good general manager and he will figure out who will be next.''
Before they decide who is next, however, Guillen did want to praise the guy that was about to exit stage left.
A lot of respect,'' Guillen said of Piniella. "I think this man, when you talk about baseball, period, Lou Piniella's name has to come up. As a player, as a coach, as a manager, I think this guy will be in the Hall of Fame.
"When you make decisions like that, drastic because he had to think about it. That's easy when you have his age and had the career that he had and had the privilege to have to power to say 'I'm done.'
"Meanwhile, when my day comes I hope it comes like that. Leave and pack my stuff up on my own, not people firing me or something like that. Will we miss him? Yes. This guy brings a lot to the game. A lot. Meanwhile people have to respect his decision.''

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This page contains a single entry by Joe Cowley published on July 20, 2010 9:11 PM.

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