Kenny Must Go!
Kenny Williams must go. With the latest little
"mix-up" the White Sox general manager has proven that he is the
most incompetent person to hold that position since Ken "Hawk"
Harrelson. It's not so much the magnitude of his latest blunder,
it's just that it happened.
When the Sox announced the trade of James Baldwin to the Los Angeles
Dodgers Thursday afternoon, the Sox issued a press release stating that the
Sox had obtained three minor league pitchers in the deal: Onan
Masaoka, Gary Majewski, and Jon Berry.
Now it's bad enough that the Sox are getting Majewski back after three
months or so after the player they traded him for, Antonio Osuna went
on the disabled list for the rest of the season, but what made this whole
thing intolerable is the press release that followed. After telling
the world about how they liked Berry's arm and how he was a good young
prospect, the Sox announced that they hadn't traded for the pitcher at all.
Instead, the Dodgers had traded Jeff Barry, a 32-year-old outfielder
who was last seen in Japan before coming to the Dodgers farm system.
Williams acknowledged that there was a mix-up. The Sox had been
Berry's stats and assumed that's whose name was on the table, not Barry.
Williams said, "The deal stands."
Or as Bud Selig said to Gord Ash about the David Wells deal:
The problem here is that this is one of a string of very strange deals
involving the White Sox GM. It began with the Mike Sirotka for
Wells trade. Gord Ash complained mightily that Sirotka was damaged
goods, but the travesty is really that Williams knew that Wells had a
herniated disc and still made the $9-million gamble that Wells would remain
healthy enough to pitch.
perhaps his gutsiest performance of the year, James Baldwin pitches in
Game 3 of the American League Divisional Series at Seattle.
Next Williams made the Majewski for Osuna deal with the Dodgers.
from Dodgers camp were that he was suffering from tendenitis early in spring
training, but Williams went ahead with the deal. He then signed Osuna
to an extension to his contract before Osuna had thrown a single pitch.
Naturally, Osuna went on the disabled list within a few weeks of the start
of the season.
Then there was the Royce Clayton signing. The Sox have a
major league shortstop in Jose Valentin. Thirty-six errors you
at his double plays. Look at his range. Now look at what Clayton
has done. It was a signing that shouldn't have been made.
Of course there was the deal in which we picked up Julio Ramirez and
played him regularly for about a month even though he was hitting below
.100. Williams wasn't responsible for Ramirez playing every day, but
he was responsible for not sending him to Charlotte when he showed beyond a
shadow of a doubt that he was incapable of hitting major league pitching.
There was the signing of Harold Baines, and his retention on the
squad until he was injured, despite the fact that he was hitting below .150.
Instead of shopping for a left-handed DH/pinch hitter who was less than 42
years old, Williams did nothing.
So far the only signing that has panned out in Williams' brief tenure as GM
is that of Jose Canseco, and he is one injury away from that being a
And now this. Williams doesn't even know which of two players he is
talking about when discussing a trade. I can just hear the discussions
between Williams and former White Sox executive Danny Evans, now with
Evans: And we'll throw in *mumble* B*rry.
Williams: Great. We love his arm.
Evans: Yeah, he has a great arm. So it's a deal?
[Sox then put out press release.]
Evans: Kenny, about that trade. Um, it seems you named
guy. We were talking about Jeff Barry with an "a," the
played in Japan last year, not Jon Berry, the young pitcher.
Williams: Oh, okay. No problem.
[Sox send out revised press release.]
In a perfect world the script would end this way.
[Rioting Sox fans storm Williams' office.]
Roland Hemond: Oh, my God! They've killed Kenny!
Jerry Reinsdorf: You bastards!
But I guess that only happens in cartoons. Come to think of it, the
front office does resemble a cartoon....
Editor's Note: Hal Vickery has been a White Sox fan since
1955 when he was five years old. For much of that time he also had a
secondary rooting interest in the Cubs, which he has shown the good sense to
abandon. When not cheering for or writing about the Sox, Hal teachers chemistry
and physics at North Boone High School, in Poplar Grove, IL. Hal commutes
there daily from Joliet, where he lives with his wife Lee, their son Jeff, and
Buster T. Beagle.Have a Thought about
Kenny the Klown!
You Can Put it on the Board -- Yes!