Happy 2017! The year the White Sox, as my Cub buddy put it, “Finally looked to the Cubs to see how to do it right.” Of course the Sox have rebuilt before, but ya know nothing counts till the Cubs do it. So thanks to the Cubs for legitimizing what teams have been doing for years. I might have to write a blog about our conversation on NYE, I might not, we’ll see. Let’s just say this, it included making fun of the new field name (deserved, but who cares if they win), what to do with the homeless population on 35th and Shields in the off season and some great “that damn Jew” talk. It was ludicrous. OH NOOOOOOOOOO! The fight’s out / I’ma ’bout to punch yo…lights out.
So all the fucking time I see “Bring back Ozzie!”and “We should get AJ to play/manage us!” It can get me frustrated, I can get a little upset, but usually I write it off. But in 2017, I take issue with it. Let’s look at these claims.
Ozzie is my homeboy. Yep, he is. I love Ozzie. I thought Ozzie was perfection for a White Sox manager, as far as off the field. Calling Jay Marriotti a “f@g”, making fun of Wrigley (and even buying a shirt that made fun of him) and overall just being the greatest type of person to represent the southside. It was a great time…….when there was success. 2010 it ran a little thin and in 2011 it broke. Ozzie went down south, got PAID, and stunk up the joint. You could argue that they really didn’t try down there, but Ozzie’s comments on Castro kinda showed he DGAF and was ready for some time off. I can’t see the Blizzard Of Oz in the front office, and taking up his old position seems really lame. Plus Kenny is a lifer, sadly.
I’d blame Kenny Williams for the years of losing, but he is Jerry’s boy so ya know, that ain’t changing. If you look at moves after Ozzie, thay have K Will written all over it. The hiring of Rick Hahn and Robin Ventura (and now Ricky) just show that he was looking for guys who would take some direction. But you might be saying “But MSS it is Rick Hahn who is making this rebuild happen” to which I would say correct, but only cause K Will has been failing since 2009. I imagine a nice conversation over Cuban cigars and fine liquor. Jerry having to talk down Kenny to make him listen to Rick. Jerry saying “Now Kenny, you’ve done your plan and it doesn’t work, so let’s let Rick try”. And the Cubs winning might have sealed the deal. Who knows? My line with Kenny doesn’t seem to be working at the moment, but next time I see him, I will ask him.
Ozzie had some experience before he came to Chicago to manage. We tried to one up that and hire a guy with 0 experience and while it almost worked for a year, we had 4 more years of crappy baseball. Ricky should be an upgrade, but only time will tell. You know who also has 0 experience? The #2 request for our new manager A.J..
Listen, I get it. 2 of the most vocal players for the White Sox, hell any team they played on, are looking to continue their work in this fine game. Yes, we gave Ozzie a chance and it worked out, no we shouldn’t bring him back. Do we want to offer a job that we gave to RV with 0 experience to A.J. with no experience? I don’t think so, I’d rather see him go up the ranks in the minors and see if he really wants to do it. You don’t give dream positions to guys who haven’t paid their dues. Not in Trump’s America. Just like our president elect did it, he created it all himself. I feel giving him the reigns would be catastrophic at this point. There are gonna be some lean years ahead of us, no need to burn out A.J. with that bullshit. Ricky can handle it. I have faith in Ricky. I think so anyways.
I think A.J. would be a great defensive manager one day. I’d point to the Sox defense in 2013, they sucked. 2012, best in the MLB. Difference? A.J. left and no one was there to yell at Alexi. Or Gordon. Or anyone in the infield. From what I have heard he held guys responsible for their play on the field. Something that has been missing for years and years. I like to think that Ricky will change that, we’ll see.
We have some time before we really have to tweek the manager, if we even have to tweek it. Ricky has something to prove after being shoved aside on the northside, let’s hope he makes his mark early and often. So settle in, enjoy the cheap tickets while they last, and learn to enjoy baseball again. It isn’t what the southsiders have been trying to quickie fix for the past 4 years, it’s watching kids grow, become the stars. Like Tim Anderson last year, let’s hope we find a few more this summer.
Happy New Year Fam! Big things are coming for the 108 in 2017. We have some t-shirts getting printed as I type this. Look for us at SoxFest and maybe you’ll get a “108 Exclusive” shirt. Follow us on FB here! We go live from time to time, mostly while drunk. We also have our Twitter that you can follow here!