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Thursday, July 29, 2004

A (broken?) bone to pick with Ozzie

Can he be fined for these comments:

“I expect the first ground ball to shortstop or second base, we go after somebody, hopefully we hurt somebody,” he said. “That’s the way to go. Last night we had two opportunities to do it and we didn’t do it.”

Yep, Guillen was advocating intentionally hurting an opponent, so long as it was done within the rules. Especially since the Twins were down a middle infielder already when Nick Punto broke his collarbone in Monday’s game.

“He got hurt in the first inning,” Guillen said. “All of a sudden we can take somebody out there and they don’t have any more infielders. We didn’t take the shot. I want my players to take the shot — take a clean shot and go out there and try and break the bone.”

WillYoung Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:43 PM | 53 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: white sox

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   1. Sean McNally Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:48 PM (#763142)
Well, its hard to practice a good take out slide on a sac bunt...

Seriously, what kind of jerk says these things -- TO A REPORTER?!?! Are you f'ing kidding me?

All well and good to say it behind the locker room door, but not to the press. Dumbass
   2. Russ Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:51 PM (#763145)
“He got hurt in the first inning,” Guillen said. “All of a sudden we can take somebody out there and they don’t have any more infielders. We didn’t take the shot. I want my players to take the shot — take a clean shot and go out there and try and break the bone."

Insanity. This warrants at least a 10-game, if not indefinite suspension. What kind of nut says something like this?
   3. Daryn Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:54 PM (#763150)
Classy.
   4. Boomer Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:56 PM (#763152)
Not suprising for a person of Guillen's ilk.
   5. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:57 PM (#763154)
Yeah, this crosses a line. I'm fine with managers advocating take-out slides into second, but hoping to inflicy injury? My punishment: 2 or 3 games, and a fine.
Question: At what point does a "clean shot" that breaks a bone turn into dirty pool?
   6. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: July 29, 2004 at 03:58 PM (#763158)
When you're trying to injure rather than just break up a double play?
   7. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:02 PM (#763163)
I thought Little Nicky Punto was eaten in a brawl. What's this about a broken collarbone?

Oh, and also, I have no idea what Guillen's smoking about the Twins not having any more middle infielders. Michael Cuddyer was in right and Jose Offerman was on the bench Monday night. Those two aren't exactly Gold Glovers, but it's not like the Twins had a bench full of guys like Matt LeCroy and Henry Blanco.
   8. Dan Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:05 PM (#763166)
I was playing the Twins in my MVP baseball franchise, and when Rivas got tossed or injured, they used Blanco at 2b...
   9. Craig in MN Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:08 PM (#763169)
they used Blanco at 2b...

He'd probably be better than Offerman.
   10. WillYoung Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:13 PM (#763172)
Michael Cuddyer's pivot in the ninth inning yesterday (with a runner all over him, no less) was a thing of beauty. An injured Luis Rivas would not really be that much of a blow to the Twins.
   11. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:17 PM (#763175)
Is there any way this could have been a miscommunication based on the writer's (in)ability to properly understand Guillen?

I know this could be spun all kinds of ways, but after Wily Mo Pena spanked the heck out of Milwaukee they had him on WTMJ and it was incomprehensible. To me anyway.

So maybe the writer just heard wrong?

Or maybe Ozzie is nuts.

Makes for a fun Thursday discussion.
   12. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:23 PM (#763184)
I can't wait for the Batgirl Lego re-enactment.
   13. Kirby Kyle Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:28 PM (#763190)
After yesterday's appalling loss, I was dwelling on how frustrating it has been to be a White Sox fan these many years. And just as I'm feeling up to my neck in a pool of ####, here comes Ozzie doing a cannonball off the springboard.
   14. Noffs Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:28 PM (#763191)
Speaking of Rivas, I saw someone mention that Rivas, despite the reputation, was like the worst defensive player in baseball in '03 according to UZR. Did MGL just state this one time, or did he post all of the results somewhere?
   15. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:29 PM (#763193)
He hasn't posted his results... he says he might never do that (I don't remember the reason). He just drops little hints about his data every once in a while.
   16. Capt. Craptastic!!! Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:30 PM (#763196)
Dear Ozzie,

Please injure Rivas the next time your teams play.

Regards,

CC
   17. WillYoung Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:36 PM (#763199)
Is there any way this could have been a miscommunication based on the writer's (in)ability to properly understand Guillen?

I was curious about that myself but this column in the Chicago Tribune seems to verify Ozzie's insanity.

Aaron Rowand, in the eighth inning Monday, and Carlos Lee, in the ninth, each had a chance to slide hard into second base—and didn't.

That didn't go over well with Guillen, who says that every time a baserunner slides into a bag, he should do so cleanly but hard enough that an opposing infielder could get hurt.

"We go after somebody, and hopefully we hurt somebody," he said. "That's the way to go. [Monday night] we had two opportunities to do it, and we didn't do it."
   18. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:37 PM (#763201)
Given this little diatribe, I can't believe that Dusty "I'm above criticism... blacks do better in the sun... I don't like walks..." Baker might actually be the better Chicago manager when it comes to media relations
   19. VG Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:39 PM (#763205)
It may have been ill-advised for Guillen to make these comments, but all you Twins moralizers ought to be careful. Torii Hunter's hit on Jamie Burke was legal the other night, but it had a lot less of a game purpose than breaking up a double play. Frankly, it was kind of stupid because he could have injured himself. I can't see what he was trying to accomplish other than taking a crack at a catcher who was looking the other way.

Like I said, it was legal. I'll even call it a clean, fair hit. But don't act like his attitude on that play was any different than what Guillen was talking about.
   20. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:39 PM (#763206)
And isn't this all the more surprising given that Guillen spent his career as a SS? You'd think he'd be against unnecessarily hard slides when the middle infielder is in an exposed position coming over the bag trying to catch and throw in the same motion.

I bet 15 years ago his opinion on this subject would have been very different.
   21. Capt. Craptastic!!! Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:43 PM (#763213)
"Like I said, it was legal. I'll even call it a clean, fair hit. But don't act like his attitude on that play was any different than what Guillen was talking about."

Fair enough. But I haven't seen Hunter quoted about trying to hurt someone.

I don't feel that Guillen is advocating something that is that unique. I just think that it is unusual that he is telling reporters about it. I could be wrong, though.
   22. Kirby Kyle Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:44 PM (#763216)
UCCF anticipated what I wanted to mention: Guillen lost nearly a full season when he collided with Tim Raines in 1992 and tore ligaments in his knee. It wasn't a takeout slide, but the net effect (Raines undercutting him) was similar. It put an end to his basestealing "ability", which was something of a blessing, as Ozzie was one of the worst percentage basestealers in the league (34 for 66 over the previous two season).
   23. mgl Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:49 PM (#763225)
Yes, going into this year, with around 320 games at second base, Rivas was the worst defender in baseball. His UZR was around -25 runs, which means he had cost his team around 50 runs as compared to an average second baseman (after adjusting for the infield in the Metrodome of course). His total Superlwts projection going into this year was -17 per 150 games or around replacement level. Not very good, even for a 24 yo.

This year so far his hitting and fielding are much better than before. His Superlwts projection is "up to" -15, still sucky, to use a technical term.

His current (2004) UZR is 0, but there is a caveat. I am still using last year's park adjustments for the Metrodome. The infield was changed. It is much slower. I suspect that Rivas still has a "minus" UZR once the proper adjustments are made. In any case, I would guess that his defense still sukcs. You generally don't go from the worst defender in baseball in 320 games to an average one in 90 some odd games. UZR works best with a large sample and maybe a little "subjective evaluation" to help tweak the regression...
   24. Vance Law Revue Posted: July 29, 2004 at 04:58 PM (#763236)
You generally don't go from the worst defender in baseball in 320 games to an average one in 90 some odd games.

Jeter fans everywhere disagree. Of course, I guess Jeter is special like that.
   25. Larry Bowa Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:06 PM (#763247)
Fellas,

And you think I'm nuts?
   26. Alex Vila Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:11 PM (#763250)
This is utterly insane. I can understand breaking up the DP, but to break the fielder up along with it is nuts. Soon, Ozzie will start looking for the quart of strawberries that were stolen, even though he was told that Darth Thomas ate them.
   27. VG Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:22 PM (#763255)
Basically, the argument boils down to Guillen saying a little too colorfully what the Twins are regularly lauded for thinking -- play hard, break up double plays, run the catcher over at the plate if you have to.

Please.
   28. Bull Pain Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:25 PM (#763262)
I'm guessing that Ozzie said this to cover his butt for not having Mike Jackson throw at Hunter in the 9th inning of the first game. Basically everyone in the stadium thought Hunter was getting one in his back, and it didn't happen. All of the old demons of this series (like Manuel being a little puss) came back in a hurry when Hunter steamrolled Burke. Ozzie isn't the sharpest guy around, and he probably talked about "taking guys out" so it didn't seem like he was punked by the Twins. He was.
   29. yb125 Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:25 PM (#763263)
If he didn't specially say to try and hurt guys, break their bones and potentially end their careers I don't think anyone would be upset.
   30. greenback calls it soccer Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:28 PM (#763270)
And isn't this all the more surprising given that Guillen spent his career as a SS? You'd think he'd be against unnecessarily hard slides when the middle infielder is in an exposed position coming over the bag trying to catch and throw in the same motion.

Guillen sounds too psychotic to be this rational. He probably thinks it's a little game, you try to break my legs with takeout slides, I try to break your fingers with my cleats.
   31. Craig in MN Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:29 PM (#763274)
I think it's obvious the Guillen just wants payback for having his team beat into a plastic pulp by Spiderman while being cheered on by Don Zimmer. That is obviously a hard thing to take, and we should cut Guillen some slack.
   32. VG Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:33 PM (#763295)
BP: I think Guillen was ticked that Aaron Rowand and Carlos Lee didn't slide hard and cleanly into Rivas when they had the chance after Hunter's hit. All year, Guillen has talked about not plunking guys in retaliation unless he calls for it. Hunter's hit was delivered on the basepaths, so the proper place to answer that was on the basepaths as well.

Vince
   33. Pingu Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:33 PM (#763298)
I'm guessing that Ozzie said this to cover his butt for not having Mike Jackson throw at Hunter in the 9th inning of the first game.

It was Ozzie's choice one way or the other. Mike Jackson and Hunter are boys from their days together on the twins. Would you plunk your friend in the arse?
   34. Capt. Craptastic!!! Posted: July 29, 2004 at 05:40 PM (#763318)
Would you plunk your friend in the arse?

That depends entirely on our relationship.
   35. Harold can be a fun sponge Posted: July 29, 2004 at 06:04 PM (#763387)
It put an end to his basestealing "ability", which was something of a blessing, as Ozzie was one of the worst percentage basestealers in the league

OTOH, he was one of the best fielders in the league. Using play-by-play data (Defensive Average), he went from one of the top SS to average or worse after the injury. Given his offensive "contributions", that means he went from a quality player to worthless.
   36. Bull Pain Posted: July 29, 2004 at 06:10 PM (#763404)
It was Ozzie's choice one way or the other. Mike Jackson and Hunter are boys from their days together on the twins. Would you plunk your friend in the arse?

When you are 39 years old and only put into games that are out of hand, I'd think you'd want to do whatever you are told to do. Of course, a Mike Jackson on the suspended list or in the Atlantic League sounds pretty good to all White Sox fans.
   37. Pingu Posted: July 29, 2004 at 06:18 PM (#763421)
When you are 39 and only put into games that are out of hand, I'd think you'd have your priorities straight. Why would you intentionally hit a friend in order to impress teammates and a coach of four months?
   38. H. Vaughn Posted: July 29, 2004 at 06:52 PM (#763508)
#11 Harvey: I've sometimes wondered if what sounds like utter stupidity from Guillen's yap is simply inarticulate wording from a guy who is using ESL.
   39. wealz Posted: July 29, 2004 at 07:16 PM (#763566)
When you are 39 years old and only put into games that are out of hand, I'd think you'd want to do whatever you are told to do. Of course, a Mike Jackson on the suspended list or in the Atlantic League sounds pretty good to all White Sox fans

Actually, it was reported that Jackson and Hunter are friends and that he wouldn't have hit Hunter.
   40. mgl Posted: July 29, 2004 at 07:19 PM (#763577)
FWIW, I thought that was a fairly ridiculous "bowl over" by Hunter. A slide beats the throw by a mile. The catcher was nowhere near blocking the plate - he was like 5 feet in front of it, towards the pitchers mound. Hunter did almost an abrupt turn to the left. You hardly ever see a player bowl over the catcher anymore, which I think is a good thing, as it is a ridiculous "rule" anyway (that you are allowed to bowl over the catcher)...
   41. wealz Posted: July 29, 2004 at 08:16 PM (#763783)
And isn't this all the more surprising given that Guillen spent his career as a SS? You'd think he'd be against unnecessarily hard slides when the middle infielder is in an exposed position coming over the bag trying to catch and throw in the same motion.

I bet 15 years ago his opinion on this subject would have been very different.


I don't know. If a middle infielder gets his leg broken on a legal slide isn't it the middle infielder's fault?
   42. cferejohn Posted: July 29, 2004 at 09:10 PM (#763892)
I don't know. If a middle infielder gets his leg broken on a legal slide isn't it the middle infielder's fault?

Probably sometimes, but if players are *trying*, as Guillen suggested, to break someones leg, well, its hard to put the blame on the victim there. I mean, if they are just trying to get in there and stop the guy from making a clean throw, fine, but I don't think making a nominally "clean" play with the express purpose of seriously injuring him is kosher in any sport. Well, boxing.

Not to say it doesn't happen, but for Guillen to come out and say it to the media is pretty dumb...
   43. mgl Posted: July 29, 2004 at 09:15 PM (#763906)
Kevin, reasonable point....
   44. wealz Posted: July 29, 2004 at 09:46 PM (#763971)
Probably sometimes, but if players are *trying*, as Guillen suggested, to break someones leg, well, its hard to put the blame on the victim there. I mean, if they are just trying to get in there and stop the guy from making a clean throw, fine, but I don't think making a nominally "clean" play with the express purpose of seriously injuring him is kosher in any sport. Well, boxing.

Not to say it doesn't happen, but for Guillen to come out and say it to the media is pretty dumb...


Well, Guillen has spoken in hyperbole to the media when making a point before. The press conference where he was introduced as manager when he said he wouldn't hesitate to have Ordonez or Thomas bunt to move runners along being a prime example ...

As far as breaking up a DP goes, I just don't think it's possible to break someone's leg on a legal slide without them complying in some fashion. I mean they have a choice to stand in there, take the punishment, and try for the DP, or take the force and get out of the way.
   45. dcsmyth1 Posted: July 29, 2004 at 10:18 PM (#764013)
If I'm a GM or an owner, I simply don't want somebody of Ozzie's maturity level as my manager. That is not to say that he won't be able to "fire up" some equally immature 26 yr old ballplayers. Maybe he will; I don't care. I do want a manager who understands the unwritten rules and is not afraid to retaliate when called for. But Ozzie, even though he probably has some good qualities as a manager, is simply too immature to lead my ship...
   46. Urban Faber Posted: July 29, 2004 at 10:37 PM (#764029)
I think we should all just go out and get drunk, forget this thread ever happened ...
   47. Free Seop Choi! Posted: July 29, 2004 at 10:38 PM (#764032)
they used Blanco at 2b...

He'd probably be better than Offerman.


Yeah, Blanco would let grounders bounce off his chest and then pick 'em up but, unlike Offerman, he'd do it on purpose.
   48. Srul Itza Posted: July 30, 2004 at 01:44 AM (#764358)
Would you plunk your friend in the arse?

Where is Mike Piazza when you need him?


As for the catcher blocking the plate/runner bowling him over thing -- I have no problem with the catcher being in front of the plate to make the tag. What do you expect him to do, while encumbered with all of that gear -- stand out of the path and make some sort of lunge to tag him before he gets to the plate? If the catcher has the ball, he is entitled to stand in front of the plate and tag the guy coming in, without being knocked out.

Think of it like a run down. If a guy gets caught in a run down, you don't see him charge the guy in front of him in the hopes of jarring loose the ball. When the catcher is holding the ball, he is in the same position.

The real problem is that catchers do it without the ball, while awaiting the tag. At that point, they are illegally impeding the runner's right to get to the base. I don't care if they are "awaiting" the ball. If the rule allows that, they should change the rule, because it is encouraging these kinds of collisions.
   49. Joe Morgan Posted: July 30, 2004 at 01:59 AM (#764378)
Yes, I have read what Ozzie Guillen said... and no, I don't completely agree. Baseball can be a rough and dangerous game, and sometimes players do get hurt. I think you cross the line when you try to hurt a player. I understand what Ozzie was doing...he was trying to motivate his players to play hard. Like I said before, playing hard is what seperates the champions from just a collection of players.

I remember back when I was on the big Red Machine, Sparky Anderson, who is like a father to me...my prayers, my wife's prayers and my daughters prayers all go out to Sparky ... would encourage us all to play hard. Guys like Tony Perez would make sure we did what Sparky told us. Perez, who could get it down in the field and at the plate, could also get it down on the basebath. You never saw Tony making a token run down to second base. But what made Tony Perez a Hall of Famer was the way he would lead the others. If young guys like Davey Concepcion would loaf down to second, Tony would encourage them to play better, and play harder.

In fact, that's one of the things that made Davey the greatest shortstop of all time. Not only could he field in hit, but he always took the player out at second base. When he was in the field, he was smart enough to not get hurt and cost our team his valuable contributions.

You just don't see players doing those things these days. Maybe, Derek Jeter in NY, but I just don't see anyone else doing it. I don't fault Ozzie for trying to get his players to play harder. But it needs to come from more than Ozzie. Guys like Frank Thomas could be doing more of that, but ... I just don't see it. That's why I think Frank will never make it into the HOF. He never became the leader with the Sox like he should have become.
   50. WillYoung Posted: July 30, 2004 at 02:49 AM (#764396)
Can we just end the Primey balloting after that post?
   51. AJMcCringleberry Posted: July 30, 2004 at 07:11 AM (#764621)
The real problem is that catchers do it without the ball, while awaiting the tag. At that point, they are illegally impeding the runner's right to get to the base. I don't care if they are "awaiting" the ball. If the rule allows that, they should change the rule, because it is encouraging these kinds of collisions.

It is illegal for the catcher to block the plate w/o the ball, but I've never seen it called.

Rule 7.06

...The catcher, without the ball in his possession, has no right to block the pathway of the runner attempting to score. The base line belongs to the runner and the catcher should be there only when he is fielding a ball or when he already has the ball in his hand.
   52. The Original SJ Posted: July 30, 2004 at 08:48 AM (#764681)
Wow post #50 is amazing. Well done.

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