August 2005

Tuesday 6:20 PM

Tuesday, August 16, 2005, 6:20 pm

Timo’s Status?

Just so I understand it clearly, how do you guys really feel about Timo leading off?

Joking … just joking.  I will try to find the right moment with Ozzie (it has been a rough week) to ask him about his motivations/lineup.

I do share your enthusiasm for watching BA play tonight.  In spring training he was a very fun player to watch … aggressive, covers a lot of ground, etc.  He certainly fits into the style of play Ozzie/Kenny want.

Pregame Tuesday

Tuesday, August 16, 2005, 3:22 pm

Sox Lineup

Perez, LF … Iguchi, 2B … Everett, DH … Konerko, 1B … AJ, C … Rowand, CF … Uribe, SS … Crede, 3B … Anderson, RF … Garcia, RHP.

Big League Debut

Congratulations to Brian Anderson, who makes his major league debut tonight, hitting ninth and playing right field.

Gracious Hosts

Despite recent stumbles, the White Sox are 36-23 (.610) at home in 2005, the fourth-best winning percentage in the American League, but have lost 11 of their last 17 at U.S. Cellular Field since July 8.  The Sox were 30-12 with a .266 average and 3.67 ERA through their first 42 home games, but are hitting .242 with a 4.47 ERA and have been outscored, 66-86, in their current stretch.

Notes

Carl Everett is 8-17 (.471) over his last six games and is hitting .455 (10-22) with three home runs and nine RBI vs. Minnesota this season … Paul Konerko has reached base safely in 17 straight games … at 38-19, the White Sox own the best road record in the major leagues and are on pace to win a franchise-record 54.

Monday Against Minnesota

Monday, August 15, 2005, 4:07 pm

Roster MovePods

Scott Podsednik was placed on the disabled list and Brian Anderson, a first round pick in 2003, joined the club.  "BA" was hitting .295 with 69 runs scored, 23 doubles, three triples, 15 home runs and 54 RBI in 111 games.  Brian arrived at about 3:30 pm and is available tonight.

Hopefully, this down time will give Pods a couple of weeks to rest his legs and come back 100 percent for the stretch drive.

Sox Lineup

Perez, LF … Uribe, SS … Everett, DH … Konerko, 1B … AJ, C … Dye, RF … Rowand, CF … Blum, 2B … Crede, 3B … Contreras RHP.

Yesterday’s Showers

Yesterday was frustrating in that had we been able to quickly begin playing the game after the second rain delay, we (the White Sox) felt there was enough time to make it an official game.  The weather did not cooperate, and we waited quite a while to see if we could resume play.  Of course, once the game was called, the rain let up quite a bit.  We ended up arriving home at around 11:00 pm.

No word yet on a makeup date, although September 5 is the only mutual off day for the two teams.

Sunday At The Pahk

Sunday, August 14, 2005, 12:51 pm ET

Today’s Lineup

Perez, LF … Uribe, SS … Everett, DH … PK, 1B … Rowand, CF … Dye, RF … Blum, 2B … Widger, C … Crede, 3B … El Duque, RHP.

Sox Arrival

With a late 12:15 pm bus, many members of the White Sox travel party arrived at Fenway Park after the gates had opened for the fans, which meant that several White Sox stars made the 750-foot walk to their clubhouse through scores of fans.  A few fans didn’t noticed, while some gave strange looks to the big guys in suits wading through all the the Red Sox t-shirts and replica jerseys.

Sox In The Media

Im_twib_logo430x92

This weekend you may have seen This Week In Baseball, guest hosted by manager Ozzie Guillen.  During the episode, Scott Podsednik showed his basestealing skills to reporter/fastpitcMarkbuehrleh star Jennie Finch.

The new edition of The Sporting News contains a feature on Mark Buehrle and Jon Garland.  Tadahito Iguchi posed for a photo for an upcoming edition of Sports Weekly that will include a story about the possible American League Rookie of the Year.  Paul Konerko also sat for a cover photo for Sports Weekly (to run sometime in September), and Mark Buehrle was interviewed by Sports Illustrated for a piece in their weekly baseball coverage.

Rather than have the national (i.e. east coast) media to come to Chicago, we had to bring the mountain to the east coast.

Impressive Stats

When you have a chance, check out some of the seasons being enjoyed by outfielders at the top levels of the White Sox system.  At Class AAA Charlotte, former first-round pick Brian Anderson was hitting .297 with 15 home runs, 54 RBI and a .363 OBP.  Joe Borchard, after overcoming a slow start and a nagging injury, is hitting .261 with 22 home runs and 54 RBI.  At Class AA Birmingham, Jerry Owens is batting .340 with 21 extra-base hits, 42 RBI and 32 stolen bases.  Chris Young is batting .278 with 37 soubles, one triple, 21 home runs and 64 RBI and has added 19 steals.  And Ryan Sweeney is hitting .285 with 37 RBI, a .352 slugging percentage and .348 OBP.

Rare Feat

Congratulations to Paul Konerko for hitting his 200th career home run last night.  Konerko has homered in each of the first two games of the series.  Surprisingly, those two home runs were the first ever by Konerko at Fenway Park.

Cooler by the Lake

Still brutally hot in Boston.  We hear the weather is cooler in Chicago.

Sticky Boston

Saturday, August 13, 2005, 4:55 pm

Tonight’s Lineup

Ozuna, LF … Iguchi, 2B … Everett, DH … Konerko, 1B … Rowand, CF … Dye, RF … AJ, C … Crede, 3B … Uribe, SS … Garland, RHP.

Boston Weather

Very hot, very humid, very sticky.  Air is not moving much … a lot like last night.

Shingo Lands

Good to see that Shingo Takatsu has signed a minor league contract with the New York Mets and is now at their Class AAA team in Norfolk.

GarGarland_1

Jon Garland tonight is attempting to become the sixth pitcher in White Sox history and first since Jack McDowell in 1993 to record at least 17 victories in his first 23 starts … according to Elias Sports Bureau, Ed Cicotte won 19 games in his first 23 starts of 1919 and Clark Griffith won 18 in 1901, while McDowell, Bill Pierce (1956) and Ed Walsh (1908) each won 17.  Heady company if Jon accomplishes the feat tonight.

Ticket Update

Monday’s home game against the Minnesota Twins is sold out, but plenty of tickets remain for Tuesday and Wednesday’s contests.  Friday and Saturday against the Yankees are sold out, but tickets do remain for Sunday’s game.  Act now.  The team’s annual Picnic In The Park, planned for Sunday night after the game, is sold out, as is the annual Field of Greens Charity Golf Outing on Thursday’s off day.  Both events benefit Chicago White Sox Charities, which will raise over $1 million in 2005.

Note To Fans

Friday, August 12, 2005, 6:03 pm

I just read your comments to my last post.  I am so happy to see how much you shared in the excitement of the Yankees series.  The ballpark was electric — as only Yankee Stadium can be — and to beat them Wednesday in a game that obviously meant a lot to them (Mariano Rivera for two innings) was tremendous.  The players were stoked and obviously, so was the team.

To answer a few questions …

Art Berke, a long-time, die-hard White Sox fan (that’s not to say he is old), is the VP of Communications for Sports Illustrated.  He was kind enough to bring out several advance copies of this week’s issue so that we could share them with Podsednik.  I assume by now, everyone has seen it.

The ESPN The Magazine edition is out on newsstands.  David Beckham is on the cover. 

I made reference to a riddle the other day and then forgot to answer it (sorry).  The Chicago Tribune sports section last Sunday had no mention of the Cubs on its front page.  I know people like to bash the Trib, but to be honest, I can’t argue with how they have played the White Sox this season, the number of stories on our club and the length of some of the features.  Sometimes in the past I have had complaints vis-a-vis Cubs coverage, but when you look at how the sports section has covered us this season, I cannot complain.  What do you think?

Finally, I forgot to mention how relaxing and great the train trip up to Boston was on Wednesday night.  A very cool way to travel.  For whatever reasons, the train seemed to be more comfortable and laid back, with more comraderie and socializing than on an airplane.  I know several former players who travelled by train and who claimed that it helped make their team closer.  I can understand that now that I have experienced it.  My compliments to Amtrak and Ed Cassin, our manager of team travel for organizing the ride.

Garcia_2

Taking on Those Other Sox

Friday, August 12, 2005, 5:40 pm ET

Battle of the Lefties

Tonight’s game features a matchup of fellow left-handers and good friends, Mark Buehrle and David Wells.  During his brief stay with the White Sox, Wells took Buehrle under his wing, and the young Sox left-hander really seemed to benefit on the mound.  "I think they are both alike in that they don’t change," said Ozzie Guillen before the game.  "They are the same person, and bring the same approach to the ballpark every day.  Some people might think they don’t really care, but believe me, they do.  They care a lot."

Tonight’s White Sox lineup

Pods, LF … Iguchi, 2B … Everett, DH … Konerko, 1B … Rowand, CF … Dye, RF … Pierzynski, C … Crede, 3B … Uribe, SS … Buehrle.

Red Sox Lineup

Damon, CF … Renteria, SS … Ortiz, DH … Ramirez, RF … Varitek, C … Millar, 1B … Graffy, 2B … Mueller, 3B … Kapler, RF … Boomer.

FenwayFenway

Tough to beat a road trip to Yankee Stadium and then Fenway Park.  Lots of White Sox fans have shown up for both series.  Two braves souls even held up a Sox flag Wednesday at Yankee Stadium as the Sox won the series, 2 games to 1.  Both ballparks have teriffic character and are fun for fans, but you won’t find a ton of space or much in the way of amenities.  The Red Sox have done a very nice job in using the streets around the ballpark to enlarge the footprint of the park.  Tickets here are very scarce, as they were in NYC, but the experience is well recommended for all.

Double Duty

Many members of the White Sox travel party expressed their sympathies to the family of Ted "Double Duty" Radcliffe, who passed away yesterday.  Many of our coaches were friends with Double and plan to attend his service on Wednesday.  Double frequently attended White Sox games, always wearing his chapeau, and was a friend to many and a great source of baseball stories.  Ozzie, Harold and Tim all considered him a good friend.

Cameron

It hurt to watch Mike Cameron and Carlos Beltran collide yesterday and to see the re-play over and over.  It reminded Ozzie of the collision between Dave Martinez and Lyle Mouton and his colliding with Raines in 1992.  "Usually, it is because of communication, or no communication," Guillen explained.  "In my case with Rock, I couldn’t hear him calling for it.  Players have to communiLuistiantcate and hear one another."

Fenway VIP

Prior to the game, Luis Tiant visited with Guillen in the White Sox clubhouse.

White Sox VIPs

Several White Sox sponsors travelled to Boston as guests of the team and will take in the series with the Red Sox.

Wednesday in New York

Wednesday, August 10, 2005, 10:52 am ET

Sorry not to post yesterday.  It was very busy on several fronts.

Today’s Lineup

Pods, LF … Ozuna, 2B … Everett, DH … Konerko, 1B … Rowand, CF … Dye, RF … Blum, 3B … Widger, C … Uribe, SS … Garcia, RHP.

Pods in SI

A nice feature in this week’s Sports Illustrated on Scott Podsednik.  It focuses more on how much study he puts into his technique and stealing bases.  Pick it up.  Several features and covers in Sports Weekly are coming.

Rowand SplashRowand_1

Aaron certainly has garnered some well-deserved attention for his defensive play this series.  "When I play them one way, they hit it the other," he laughed.  Some thought he might need a time out to catch his breath.  One joke was that on a pop up on the infield last night, everyone was waiting for Rowand to come in and call it.

Iguchi Attention

The Japanese media contingent was probably double what it usually is here in New York.  Nearly every Yankee game is televised in Japan, so Tadahito said he was very happy to have homered last night.  "The pitch was outside and I just tried to take it to right field," he said through an interpreter.  "It just happened to go out.  It was nice to homer because this game was shown back in Japan, but it was nicer to win."

Long FallFan

An 18-year-old, acting on a dare, jumped off the upper deck last night and landed, stunned, on the net behind home plate.  His jump took place during game action and left the press box speechless (which is tough to do).  Other than having several unresolved issues with the authorities, it appeared he was all right.  Stupid, though.  Good thing the net held or innocent people could have been hurt by his 40-foot fall.

Monuments

Several Sox players and coaches made sure to visit the monuments beyond left center before the first two games of this series.  Paul Konerko sent a missile in that direction last night to give us the winning margin, 2-1.  To think those monuments used to be in play.  They are a long way from home plate.

TrainTrain_1

We are turning back the clock after the game today.  Ed Cassin, out terrific manager of team travel, has arranged for our own train to take us from New York to Boston.  The 3 1/2-hour trip, just like they travelled in the "old days," should be very cool.

Day Game

And Freddy Garcia.  I like our chances.

Pregame at Yankee Stadium

Monday, August 8, 2005, 6:08 pm ET\

Tonight’s Lineup against Mike Mussina and the Yankees

Pods, LF … Iguchi, 2B … AJ, C … PK, 1B … Perez, DH … Dye, RF … Rowand, CF … Crede, 3B … Uribe, SS … El Duque returns.

This is the first time in his career AJ has hit third.  In fact, he has at least one at-bat at every other spot in the batting order.

Everett Update

Carl continues to improve and took batting practice tonight.  Ozzie said he hopes to be available for Wednesday’s day game.

Yankee Stadium

There is something special about Yankee Stadium.  The buzz, the feel.  Just like New York, some guys like it, some could leave it.  Before the game, Ozzie stressed that these three games were just like any other.  "We are going to try to do the same things we have done all season to win," he said.  "Some people think these games mean more here.  There are 26 reasons, 26 World Titles, here, but for me, it’s just baseball.  I have good memories here and bad memories."

Sunday Morning

Sunday, August 7, 2005, 10:45 am

Today’s Lineup

Pods, LF … Iguchi, 2B … Rowand, CF … Konerko, 1B … AJ, C … Dye, RF … Perez, DH … Crede, 3B … Uribe, SS … Garland.

Injury Updates

Spoke to Mark Buehrle this morning about his hand.  He received treatment after the game last night and had it taped all night as he slept.  He said the ball really hurt.  The way he wears his glove, the bottom meat part of his palm is exposed.  "It hit right there," Mark said.  "It hurt a lot.  I was like ‘Hey, I stopped it … Man, it hurts … hey, wait a minute, I have to throw him out."  He was laughing as he told me.

Mark is here early today for a photo shoot with a national publication.

Ken Williams was wearing his left arm in a sling last night after tearing his bicep tendon while boating on Lake Michigan yesterday.  Earlier in the week, he injured his right rotator cuff.  When I approached him to offer sympathy/find out what happened, he gave me his look and said … "YOU don’t even come over here.  I don’t want to hear it!"  Which, of course, makes me even more likely to investigate/instigate.

To quote Rick Hahn, our assistant GM, about KW: "Some people have a more difficult time with growing older than others."

Good Note

From a caller to our postgame show on ESPN Radio 1000 … Today the White Sox go for win No. 72 on the year as we unveil a sculpture of Carlton Fisk.

Clubhouse Banter

On a Sunday morning … Aaron Rowand and Greg Walker were going at it good-naturedly with Joe Crede about his two-page spread in today’s Tribune.  The story was great, but Joe hates the attention.  Of course, Aaron was on him about it.  Joe kept running around snatching Tribune sports sections and ripping them up.  "What, like I won’t be able to get another Tribune in the city of Chicago," Rowand responded.

Jack McDowell was in to say hello to Herm Schneider, Ozzie and our coaches.  His Little League managerial season is over.  I asked him if there were any championships in the McDowell house, and he said with a laugh, "Of course.  I can’t go out there as a former major leaguer and lose."  Kirk McCaskill, who was on the mound when we clinched in 1993, is another coach in the league and serves as Little League President.  Several sons of former/current big leaguers play in this league.  I am sure scouts will follow.

News

Check it out.  Take a look at the front page of today’s Chicago Tribune sports section and tell me what you don’t see … (answer next post)

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