Getting Ready for Opening Day
Sunday, March 31, 2013
This morning’s workout at U.S. Cellular Field started with a clubhouse meeting followed by stretching, infield, pitcher fielding and then batting practice. It’s the day before Opening Day and Robin Ventura’s White Sox are still working on fundamentals.
Welcome to Chicago
New White Sox infielder Conor Gillaspie got his first look at his new home ballpark today. If that weren’t special enough, he’s basking in the glow of his Wichita State Shockers advancing to the Final Four.
How dedicated is Paul Konerko? At the final Sox game in Glendale, most of the starters, including Paulie, came out early in the game to applause from the Sox fans in attendance. With the buses ready to roll to the airport and time to shower and pack for Chicago, where did PK go? Not to the showers, but out to the batting cages behind the Sox complex to get in a few more swings.
Win One for the Kids
Michigan grad and White Sox GM Rick Hahn couldn’t be happier about his Wolverines’ convincing win over Florida this afternoon and making it to the Final Four. “I have kids at the right age,” Hahn said. “If Michigan wins it all, they will be fans for life. I still remember those DePaul Blue Demons teams when I was a kid.”
Robin, Harold Baines, Mark Parent and several of the Sox staff and players are going to be taking in tonight’s 6:00 p.m. game between the Bulls and Pistons at the United Center as guests of Jerry Reinsdorf.
Quote(s) of the Day
Robin, commenting on the beginning of the season and many experts’ low expectations for the Sox:
“I think you always have optimism, Opening Day has that. For us, all that matters is what we do as a team rather than what expectations are and what someone picks you to do…It matters how you play, how guys do, what they feel like, how they come together. That’s part of the fun going through the season. There are a lot of teams that weren’t expected to do a whole lot that actually did.”
Chris Sale on the experts’ preseason predictions:
“I wouldn’t say we are trying to prove them wrong, but moreso prove ourselves right…We all believe in ourselves and each other. We are going to get this season going and get it going the right way.”
Play of the Day
As the White Sox took batting practice, Kansas City’s Jeff Francoeur walked past on his way to the batting cages behind the White Sox dugout. He was wearing K.C. Royals shorts and a teal-colored t-shirt (I couldn’t make out what was on it).
Francoeur stopped to say hello to Adam Dunn. Some type of ribbing followed and Dunn proceeded to rip Francoeur’s t-shirt down the middle, leaving him bare-chested. The Royals’ outfielder trooped back to his clubhouse to change into his new t-shirt and then headed over to hit.
White Sox vs. Royals at U.S. Cellular Field (3:10 p.m., CT, CSN). Starting pitchers will be Chris Sale for the Sox and James Shields for the Royals.
SOX: De Aza, cf; Keppinger, 3b; Rios, rf; Dunn, dh; Konerko, 1b; Viciedo, lf; Ramirez, ss; Flowers, c; Beckham, 2b.
ROYALS: Gordon, lf; Escobar, ss; Butler, dh; Moustakas, 3b; Perez, c; Hosmer, lb; Cain, cf; Francoeur, rf; Getz, 2b.
Did You Know…
…that the Sox are 58-54 overall on Opening Day (3-3 vs. Kansas City) and 26-23 when opening at home (4-1 at U.S. Cellular Field)? Also, the Sox have won 10 of its last 16 openers and eight of its last 11 at home.
Photo of the Day
White Sox put on the finishing touches at today’s workout.