vs. New York

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Tonight’s Lineup

Swish, CF; OC, SS; Thome, DH; PK, 1B; Dye, RF; AJ, C; Quentin, LF; Crede, 3B; Uribe, 2B.  Javy pitching against his former mates.

Ozzie Pregame Comments

On the team’s ability to bounce back:

“You want to stay in the pennant hunt, stay in the race.  You come out and compete.  That’s the way you need to respond.

“We’re going to have games like that, but we’re going to win games like that, too.

“They kicked our butt, but we need to show up today and kick theirs.”

Ozzie also made a hilarious reference to Derek Jeter having the “perfect life,” but I can’t reprint all of the details here …


The White Sox lead the American League with a +28 run differential and have outscored their opponents, 103-75, including a 93-58 advantage in their last 17 games … by contrast, the Sox ranked 13th in the AL in 2007 with a -146 run differential (839-693) … only Tampa Bay finished lower (-162) … the White Sox also lead the AL with 26 home runs and have given up just eight, the fewest total in baseball … the homer differential of +18 also tops the majors.


I just hope they can win A game tomorrow night.

Six measly hits, two solo home runs… another wasted night.

So much for the very good start, now 11-9… two measly games over .500 and 4-5 at HOME.

Still they are on target to win 82 games which was my guess before the season.

But it sure is frustrating to see this team when they aren’t hitting the baseball.

Mark Liptak

I appreciate Scott posting those numbers.

The run differential, number of home runs and the quality of the starting pitching are all extremely impressive….so why then is the team only 11-9?

I’ll try to answer it.

In four blow out games this season the Sox outscored the opponent 40-4 which totally skewed the numbers. The games were on 4/6-4/12-4/13 and 4/18.

In one run games the Sox are 1-2, in two run games the Sox are 2-2 a little closer to the “norm” for this team perhaps?

Regarding the number of home runs, that’s the M.O. of this club since 2000… the issue remains though, that despite numerous changes on the roster, when they don’t hit home runs WITH GUYS ON BASE, they lose. Example, Tuesday night with the Yankees.

They need balance on this roster. The number 3-7 hitters can blast away to their hearts content, but what’s desperately needed at the top and bottom of the lineup are guys with speed, guys who can steal bases, guys who can pressure the opponent into making errors and throwing more fast balls. They need guys who can bunt, advance runners, keep innings alive and turn over the batting order.

They aren’t easy to find of course, but that’s just my take on things.

As long as, for want of a better word, the Sox resemble a “beer league” softball team, they are going to hit a lot of home runs and win some games by some really, really big numbers.

But they are also going to disappear offensively for stretches of time (sans 2007 and the second half of the 2006 season), have trouble scoring runs in pitchers park’s like Seattle and Oakland and have trouble winning close games because with them it’s “home run or nothing.”

“It is what it is,” as Kenny says, but just once (maybe after this season) I’d love for him to actually listen to Ozzie and go out and get guys who can bring back “Ozzie-Ball,” make this team more balanced and give them a better chance to win games.

Mark Liptak

To those complaining about complainers, stop complaining. Stick to debating the arguments, stay away from the name calling, that’s just B.S. Well, it can be said that this team is fighting harder than last year. Hope to see how we fare against some more teams before I try to stick my foot in my mouth. Like how Floyd is doing though….

Argh. God that was frustrating watching Mussina get the best of us. And to think the RSox roughed him up for 9 ER in the last two games they played. Ouch. Then again, they get to see it more often so they should know his tendencies.

Here’s a topic for everyone to debate. Much was made of how ‘great’ Greg Walker is doing as hitting coach. The team was honking his horn all thru spring training and early when we were winning. I cannot agree. I think ‘walk’ needs to take a walk or be shown the door. he can’t hit for anyone, but i don’t see much improvement in several areas;
1. we still don’t bunt worth a damn
2. we have no game strategy for hitting.

we continue to let the big bats swing for the fences every time at bat when they should be thinking base hits. whether you tell me we don’t pay Thome, Dye or PK to get hits, misses the mark entirely. They are paid to move runners and you do that by getting on base and by hitting the ball. This is why we don’t get the big inning as often as we should. Just count the pop ups, fly outs, and sac flies. We get one run when we should have 3, 4, 5. Did you watch the yankees last night? posada had not one, not two, but THREE doubles. they all bat to get hits first, home run second. doesn’t do us much good to hit home runs when nobody is on base…..


See my above post on the “all or nothing” attitude. This has been going on since 2000. It’s not all Walker’s “fault,” the players have to be accountable….but as hitting coach, it’s his job and (to a certain extent) Ozzie’s to do more then say things like “we hope they’ll start hitting.”

Something happens to these guys when they play at home, the mindset changes. They were going the other way and trying to hit up the middle earlier this season but as soon as they return to U.S. Cellular Field…”it’s clobberin’ time!!!”

Every pitcher in baseball knows this happens. Did you see Mussina’s off speed curve’s last night, tying the Sox up in knots?

I can’t explain why this is an on going, continuous issue for this team but then I’m not the G.M., filed manager or hitting coach, nor am I getting paid what they are to have these answers.

Mark Liptak

How come every time they put the big shift on Thome he just doesn’t try to send a dribbler down the third base line?? He accidentally did it last night while checking a swing and was safe by a mile as no one was over there. I don’t understand why he doesn’t ever seem to just poke a little one opposite field.



It’s easier said then done to do what you suggest. Pitchers know this is a possibility and try to keep pitching him inside making it more difficult to do this.

But also Jim Thome has been swinging a certain way for his entire career, he has over 500 home runs…at this point in his career I don’t know if he’d be very successful trying to go the other way on a constant basis.

Not saying that he wouldn’t make the attempt if Ozzie asked him, but being a “single’s hitter” just doesn’t sound like Jim Thome and I’m sure that’s not what the Sox had in mind when they traded for him.

If the Sox had some legit lead off guys or guys with speed in the top two and bottom two spots in the batting order… guys who could get on base and pressure opponents, Jim’s issues might be very mitigated.

Mark Liptak

S.W…. Today, “bunting” means what they put up on Opening Day…
A long, long, LONG time ago… there was such a animal as a player who could bunt successfully and do all the other things that his manger wanted, to help his team win…
But, unfortunately, those players have gone the way of the buffalo and the dodo bird…
Just remember, to these players today…
Homerun hitters drive Cadillacs…and fundamentals is the section above the left field bleachers at the Cell…

I agree with above comments and add: We have too many home run or strike out guys in the line up. Swisher and OC are good editions and really help, but thome, paulie, dye, along with AJ , who is doing a good job as usual but never walks , he does get some key hits and adds energy. Those strike out guys now add uribe and even crede and somewhat of an all or nothing guy, I am not trying to pigeon hole these guys but the shoe fits , adding I think crede is great with the defense and clutch hitting , he still is not a high on base percentage guy. When you look at the down side it is big, I think the team needs to add 2 more players to the line up , one replaces uribe and one replaces either paulie, dye, or thome, to get a more balanced attack, probably not going to happen but one can wish.

For all you youngsters out there… do not look towards Mr Liptak or your obedient servant for perfect spelling…
The manager is “filed” when he can’t seem to do things well on the field… Right, Lip?
And the one who is doing the wanting in MY post is the “manager”, who is not(hopefully)away in a “manger” somewhere…

I love watching Frank Thomas play in those huge white shoes! Back to the AAA’s again.

billb… I am reminded of the quote by the late Stuart Symington, the senator from Missouri, who said back in 1967 when Charlie Finley moved the Athletics from Kansas City to Oakland…
“… Oakland is the luckiest city since Hiroshima.”…
I think that’s appropriate, considering the state of No.25’s status…
I also am well aware that that statement is politically incorrect today… but back in the late ’60’s, there was really no such thing as political correctness…it hadn’t been discovered yet…
I’m sure that kenwo will be doing “the Myposian dance of joy”(hi, Dawn…)when he gets the news of the newest reclamation project that isn’t a member of the Oakland Raiders… they seem to specialize in such things as well…


It was supposed to be “field” manager. I’m sure the folks understood.


Would not need to worry about the Thome shift if Swish and/or OC were on 2b more often. Can’t have the 3rd baseman playing SS if there’s a possibility of a steal of 3b. But these guys, when they get on first, they sit.

MLB.com did an interesting article on the stolen base. Pointed out many of my thoughts on how it distracts the pitcher leaving the batter with better pitches to hit. I always felt that as a pitcher in college, half your attention is on the runner and you worry about keeping him close and being quick to the plate…flattens out your breaking ball, causes more mistakes leading to more hits. Not worrying about the steal takes off a lot of pressure


Agree 100%. Also pitchers try to use the slide-step which could cause issues with the actual pitch they are trying to throw. It can effect your control and the break on pitchers if you aren’t completely comfortable using it.

Remember with no team speed to speak of, no threat to steal… it takes more hits strung together to drive in a run. And with the Sox hitting as a team last year and hitting .240 this season so far, that’s an issue isn’t it?

Mark Liptak

Nice win this evening…although they gave up another three runs with two out that could have cost them the game.

Something about two out runs being allowed this year.

Go get after Baltimore now.

Mark LIptak

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