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WSI News - News Watch

Nardi canned

The White Sox dismissed pitching coach Nardi Contreras on Monday, citing a failure to communicate with his staff. The move could be the first in a major housecleaning by general manager Ken Williams.

Contreras, who spent the last five seasons in his position, was "reassigned" within the organization and replaced by his assistant, Don Cooper.

"It was [the pitchers] who got him fired," Sox 12-game winner Mark Buehrle said. "He came in at 9, 10 o'clock in the morning every day looking over video, writing down stuff to help us get prepared for the hitters. He did the job. I guess the communication wasn't there and they had to get rid of him."

Williams declined to offer any specific reasons for the change, which had been rumored for weeks.

"I don't think I'll get into the whens and the hows," Williams said. "The fact of the matter remains it was very simply a desire to see our pitching staff taken to another level. We think we have some quality arms, and we think we can get a little more out of them. That's the bottom line. There's not much more to it than that."

Some pitchers insisted Contreras was a scapegoat for the team's poor overall record, just as some hitters believed former hitting coach Von Joshua was the fall guy when he was fired for the team's poor start in 2001.

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