Tag:Ozzie Guillen
Posted on: July 5, 2010 7:38 pm

Two benchings, two reactions

B.J. Upton There are two ways to take not being in the lineup: the B.J. Upton way and the Gordon Beckham way.

Upton is out against the Red Sox and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Manager Joe Maddon told Upton it was because he was 1-for-13 with a homer against Matsuzaka.

The White Sox are sitting Beckham for the second straight day in favor of Brent Lillibridge.

Both managers, Ozzie Guillen and Maddon, say these moves aren't permanent, but that was no consolation to Upton.

Upton was upset and told the St. Petersburg Times ' Marc Topkin so , "I thought I was an everyday player," Upton said. "I don't know if I'm subject to matchups now or not. I'm not going to get too bent out of shape about it, but obviously I want to be out there everyday."

Maddon told Upton he'd be in the lineup for the remaining six games before the All-Star break, but that was no consolation to Upton. Asked if he was an everyday player, Upton told Topkin, "I don't know. I have no idea. I could not tell you."

Upton is hitting .228/.321/.399 with seven home runs and 29 RBI.

Gordon Beckham Beckham is playing even worse. He's hitting .206/.271/.280 with two homers and 20 RBI.  Lillibridge was 4-for-6 on the White Sox's recent road trip.

"Lilly has been getting hits and hitting the ball hard," Beckham told the Chicago Tribune 's Mark Gonzales . "I don't think I'm hitting the ball softly. I'm not lucky, that's for sure. There's nothing I can do about it."

Guillen stood by Beckham and denied speculation that Beckham could be headed to the minors.

"[Beckham] is my second baseman," Guillen said. "He still is my second baseman. But right now, I think the way Lillibridge is playing, I'm going to give him a shot."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 29, 2010 11:36 am

Controversial ump to return to Yankee Stadium

Joe West There's nothing more forgiving or welcoming than a New York crowd. Or not.

Expect a reaction when the umpires are announced before Tuesday's Yankees-Mariners game at Yankee Stadium, as controversial umpire Joe West will work the game, the New York Post reports .

In April, West called the Yankees and Red Sox "a disgrace to baseball" after the opening series of the season between the two teams.

West told the Record : "They're the two clubs that don't try to pick up the pace. They're two of the best teams in baseball. Why are they playing the slowest? It's pathetic and embarrassing. They take too long to play."

West has found himself exactly where he seems to want to be this season -- in the spotlight. West has a publicist who peppers anyone with a big-league credential with press releases for his country music releases and is always promoting interview opportunities for the umpire.

Umpiring, at its best, is an anonymous profession, but West has been anything but, especially in 2010.

Not only did he make the remarks about the Yankees and Red Sox, he also got into a spat with White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen after calling two balks on Mark Buehrle last month.

Following that incident, Guillen had quite a few things to say about West. Here's the best of them from the Chicago Sun-Times :

"Sometimes he thinks [expletive] people pay to watch him [expletive] umpire."

"He's a [expletive] [expletive], that's what he is."

"I deserve respect and the players here deserve respect, too. When you tell the manager to 'get the [expletive] off the field,' I don't think that's a good way to handle situations. No matter what you say, what you do, how long you talk here, Major League Baseball doesn't do [expletive] for anything."

"He think he's the [expletive] on the field. People pay to watch [expletive] players play, not to see umpires and managers. I don't see any people say, 'I'm going to see Ozzie Guillen manage or Joe West [expletive] umpire.'"

About the same incident, Buehrle said, "I think he's too worried about promoting his CD and I think he likes seeing his name in the papers a little too much instead of worrying about the rules."

All three -- including West -- were fined for the incident.

This month, West raised eyebrows when he reversed a call at third base in a Reds-Nationals game all the way from first base -- even though the reversal was the right call, it seemed odd.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 27, 2010 1:59 pm
Edited on: June 27, 2010 2:04 pm

Zambrano Watch: Day 3

Carlos Zambrano Another day, another day full of Carlos Zambrano drama.

The short history for you if you've missed it all: Zambrano stunk against the White Sox, continued his tired baby act in the dugout, was pulled from the game, got in a screaming match with Derrek Lee, got sent to the clubhouse, then sent home, was suspended indefinitely by the team, ruffled feathers by going out to dinner with White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen that night and then manager Lou Piniella said if the Cubs re-instate Zambrano, he'll be headed to the bullpen. And that's as short as I can make the roundup.

So, what's up today? First off, Major League Baseball and the Players Association are expected to meet today about the suspension.

"It's really kind of a day or two away from knowing any more than that," general manager Jim Hendry tells the Chicago Tribune 's Paul Sullivan .

The Cubs would like to replace Zambrano on the roster, but are now playing with 24 men until the Zambrano situation is resolved.

Secondly, Piniella said nobody in team management has talked to Zambrano since Friday's outburst.

Thirdly, the Chicago Sun-Times ' Gordon Wittenmyer has talked to a friend of Zambrano who gives his side of the story.

Here's what Wittenmyer wrote:

And Zambrano already is calling his actions Friday ''completely misunderstood'' and blaming Derrek Lee for turning it into a big deal by confronting him during his ranting and raving after the White Sox' four-run first inning.

''All he wanted to do was pump the team up. It was completely misunderstood,'' a source close to Zambrano said, adding that Lee ''took it personal'' and told Zambrano to ''shut the f--- up.''

Yet team sources say Zambrano's rant -- much of which was in Spanish -- included yelling, ''This team is horse s----!''

That's when Lee is caught on camera intervening and telling Zambrano to shut up.

They had to be separated.

So, about Zambrano's version?

''That's not the way we see it,'' said Alfonso Soriano, who planned to call Zambrano on Saturday night. ''If he explains, maybe we can see it the way his friend sees it. But what he said wasn't right.''

As one Cub put it, ''Anybody who believes [Zambrano's version] must be smoking something.''

Asked if teammates could forgive Zambrano, Soriano said, ''I don't know.'' 


Wittenmyer also adds that pitcher Carlos Silva, in his first year with the club, is Zambrano's "only" friend on the club and the rest of the club is hoping Zambrano isn't a Cub much longer.

There's little doubt this story will end in typical Cub fashion -- neither well, nor soon.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 26, 2010 12:21 am

Guillen, Zambrano dine

Despite the drama of the day, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen and Cubs starter Carlos Zambrano went through with their planned dinner, according to Guillen's Twitter account .

Guillen tweeted: "Having dinner whit carlos and his family. Great dinner a lot fun and talk"

I'm sure Zambrano does a killer Lou Piniella impression that Guillen finds hillarious.

Zambrano was suspended indefinitely following his on-field blowup earlier in the day and Guillen's red-hit White Sox eased past Zambrano and the "dead-ass" Cubs.

After the game, Guillen was asked about his countryman and if he could manage him, he said he could.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 25, 2010 8:08 pm

Cubs suspend Zambrano

Carlos Zambrano has been suspended indefinitely by the Cubs following his meltdown on the Southside of Chicago earlier on Friday.

General manager Jim Hendry made the announcement after the gamma, saying Zambrano's behavior in the team's dugout was "not acceptable."

"His actions toward his teammates and staff were not acceptable," Hendry said. "He will not be at the ballpark tomorrow. We'll play with 24. We'll play with 24 before we tolerate that kind of behavior."

Hendry said he "wouldn't rule it out" that Zambrano would pitch for the Cubs again. As previously discussed, his contract is an albatross. He is owned more than $40 million through the 2012 season.

Manager Lou Piniella said Zambrano's actions were "unacceptable" and Derrek Lee, who also shouted at Zambrano during the incident, declined comment after the game.

White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen told reporters after the game he could manager Zambrano.

"Yes I can, yes I can, why not?" Guillen said. "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."

The problem, though, is Zambrano has repeatedly shown little respect for his teammates. Guillen and Zambrano have become fans and were scheduled to have dinner together Friday night, the Chicago Sun-Times ' Joe Cowley reported .-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 24, 2010 2:04 pm
Edited on: June 24, 2010 2:15 pm

Guillen believes Beckham whiffing too much

Gordon Beckham Gordon Beckham had a rapid ascension to the major leagues after being the eighth overall pick in 2008. He made his debut June 4, 2009 and went on to post a strong .270/.347/.460 line in 102 games as a 22-year old.

In the offseason, Beckham was shifted to second base and expected to be a significant offensive contributor, starting the season batting second. However, he has now been moved to ninth and may be on his way to the bench in a platoon situation after suffering a debilitating sophomore slump.

Beckham is batting a scant .199./270/.251, one of the worst offensive performers in the game. Yet, he still gets in the lineup every day and has amassed 231 at-bats on the year and whiffed 48 times which puts him on pace for 113 whiffs.

Manager Ozzie Guillen is now contemplating putting Beckham in a platoon situation with Omar Vizquel as a way to get 21-year-old Dayan Viciedo more playing time. Even though Beckham is struggling in every facet of the offensive game, the manager chose to focus on the strikeouts as Beckham's negative.

"If you strike out like that, you got to hit 40 home runs and hit .250," Guillen told Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.

"When you're batting ninth, [you're] the one guy has to put the ball in play," Guillen continued. "A lot of swings and misses, and only one home run. When you swing and miss and strike out that much, you got to be Jim Thome. You got to be that type of guy. But I'm really concerned about the strikeout situation."

Guillen seems to be overstating things a bit as strikeouts have been on the rise in recent years. In Guillen's playing career, 48 whiffs through 64 games would absolutely be cause for concern, but Beckham is tied for 82nd with five other players in 2010 strikeouts.

Yes, Beckham is certainly whiffing too much for someone that is batting .199, but anyone batting .199 strikes out too much. The problem is an overall offensive approach, not strikeouts. Other people are striking just as much as Beckham and producing.

Of Beckham's compatriots with 48 whiffs, Russell Branyan has 10 home runs, Jason Kubel is an important part of the Twins offense, Stephen Drew is a starting shortstop with a secure job, and Sean Rodriguez and Cliff Pennington both play part-time for the Rays and Athletics, respectively -- meaning their strikeout rate is actually higher than Beckham's.

It seems as if Guillen is looking at things from when he played, not how things are now. You definitely don't have to be Jim Thome to register 113 whiffs a year. In 2009, Bobby Abreu was 54th in the league with 113 whiffs, and Chone Figgins had 114. This is a completely new game, and these comments by Guillen should make one question if he understands the game as it is today to properly manage it.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 11, 2010 8:06 pm

Trade window for Pierzynski closing

The White Sox have until theend of Sunday's game to trade catcher A.J. Pierzynski without his approval. Following Sunday's game, he will have accumulated 10 years of major-league service time, including more than five with his current team, the White Sox.

Pierzynski told the Chicago Tribune that the trade rumors have worn on him.

"I already said if I didn't, I'd be lying," Pierzynski said. "I'm a human being and obviously I love playing here, I love playing for the White Sox and would love to stay here and to hear about all this stuff and about this and that, it gets to you.

"I'll be happy when Sunday (night) gets here and it will be over with and you guys can ask somebody else about something and leave me along, because I'll know where I'll be."

Manager Ozzie Guillen has told Pierzynski and reporters that he wasn't going anywhere, but he doesn't make the trades, his BFF Kenny Williams does.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 11, 2010 3:27 pm

Guillen, Williams situation high drama

It's not clear exactly what's going on between White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen and general manager Kenny Williams, but it's clear that the entire situation is a mess.

A team source told the Chicago Sun-Times that White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen and general manager Kenny Williams "almost came to blows in a heated shouting match" on Tuesday evening. Guillen denied that when speaking to reporters Thursday, saying, "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.''

Guillen had groused after his son, Ozney, fell to the 22nd round of the draft before being selected by the White Sox. Guillen thought his son was going to go much higher. Williams, apparently thinking the manager was insulting the team for not taking his son earlier, confronted Guillen, and that's when the men got into a confrontation.

Guillen and Williams have always had an unconventional and colorful relationship, but the combination has somehow worked and even resulted in a World Series title in 2005. With the 2010 season off to a disappointing start, however, the pressure is rising in Chicago, and the Guillen-Williams dynamic is turning increasingly sour. A source told the Sun-Times that White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf instructed Williams not to travel with the team, in order to minimize the opportunities for confrontation between the men.

''We are both very competitive men, strong-willed men,'' Williams told the team's website. ''I believe in self-assessment, and I think you have to assess all parts of our operation from top to bottom to determine if it's, in fact, still a productive working relationship."

"Is the relationship the same way it was? Not really, because a few things have happened in disagreements, but that's part of life,'' Guillen said Thursday.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

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