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WSI News - WSI Spotlight

Durham's rut...and more!

Odds and ends, bits and pieces...

*It's good to be back: For all of you loyal readers (Hi, Ma!) who have wondered where I've been since the beginning of May, here's the explanation. My hard drive died, and I ended up having to go out and buy a new machine. Believe me, I know what it's like to be cut off from civilization.

*Bud Light strikes again: Once again the commissioner of baseball has strained credibility beyond all recognition in saying that within the next twelve to eighteen months as many as eight major league clubs could go out of business. The thing we all have to remember is that Commissioner Budlight is a former used car salesman, and we must listen carefully to everything he says. He won't flat out lie. He did say that it's possible that eight teams could fold. And it's possible that pigs could fly, just not very likely.

*Foot in mouth disease: If anyone needs to have a foot extracted from their mouths the most likely candidates are Alex Rodriguez and Todd Zeile, both of whom did more than hint that the players might just launch a pre-emptive strike to prevent being locked out by the owners. Just what the fans want, more sniping between weathy owners and their wealthy employees! In case the players and owners didn't notice, there is still a war on, and the good people of the United States, don't really want to watch rich people duking it out for a bigger slice of their hard earned dollars while being told by members of the Bush administration that further terrorist attacks within the United States are inevitable. Here's a clue to both sides. Shut up and get a deal done.

*On the local front: Ray Durham isn't hitting. In case you haven't noticed, it has become an annual ritual among Sox fans and the media to talk about Ray's breakout April (this year due to Kenny Loggins preceding him in the batting order) and then bemoan the slump which inevitably follows. About three years ago, a fellow Sox fan put things in perspective as someone on the radio was discussing Rays sudden downturn. "What's the big deal?" she said. "It's May. Ray always slumps in May." An so he does.

*A true leadoff hitter: Kenny Lofton has shown a new generation of Sox fans what a real leadoff hitter can do. Which begs the question: Who was the last true leadoff man for the Sox? I nominate Rudy Law.

*Can we just get real? Everyone seems to agree the Sox need a veteran arm. Unfortunately most fans propose such outlandish deals as Carlos Lee for Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson. Phil Rogers of the Cubune put things in perspective last weekend on WSCR when he said, "Midseason trades for veterans don't work a lot of the time. Houston gave up three players for Randy Johnson a few years ago, and went nowhere. Meanwhile, Seattle picked up three players who are now among their best....Instead we should be concentrating on what can be done with the players who are on the Sox' forty-man roster now." Amen!

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, and their dog, Buster T. Beagle. Hal's opinions are necessarily those of North Boone High School, his wife, or Buster T. Beagle. You can write Hal at

More features from Hal Vickery here!

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