Message Boards  

 WSI Photo Gallery  

Post of the Week  




  2013 White Sox  

 Season Schedule  


2005 Championship


WSI Extras  

 WSI Interviews

  Audio Memories

  2002 Disaster!

2001 Season Fun!

2000 Champions!

Fun & Games

History & Glory

Sox Greats
Sox Quotables
Sox Fight Songs
Old Comiskey Park


WSI News - News Watch

Sox' silent assassin

March 24, 2002

By Doug Padilla, Chicago Sun-Times

TUCSON, Ariz.--Magglio Ordonez isn't the type of All-Star who will boast about his individual accomplishments.

So while Ordonez talks about team goals, the benefits of Kenny Lofton at the top of the order and his best wishes for a struggling pitching staff, others talk about how the White Sox have one of the best cleanup hitters in baseball.

Paul Konerko says Ordonez is out of this world. Frank Thomas manages to keep Ordonez on this planet, although he does give him some superhuman qualities.

"He's a bright young superstar,'' Thomas said. "He's a five-tool player. Like I tell everybody, I don't think he's reached his potential yet. We're going to see something special out of him real soon. He's getting very, very comfortable up here.''

Conversely, that means opposing pitchers are getting very, very uncomfortable. In the process, Thomas, the Sox' No. 3 hitter, said that he thinks a minor miracle will take place and that those pitchers actually will ignore him and start worrying about the guy on deck.

"I'm happy because I know teams are going to start realizing how good he is and start laying the ball into me a lot more,'' Thomas said.

Wishful thinking, perhaps, but recent history does show that Ordonez is on his way to reaching Thomas-like status.

In the last three seasons, Ordonez has batted .307 with an average of 31 home runs and 119 RBI. Thomas, of course, has done that and then some for a longer period. From 1991 to 2000, Thomas batted .320 with an average of 34 home runs and 115 RBI.

So with Thomas now 33 and coming off surgery for a torn right triceps, is it now time to expect equal production out of the two big men in the Sox' lineup?

"That would be hard to say because Frank put up some astronomical numbers in his day,'' manager Jerry Manuel said. "I see Magglio as still on the rise. Whether Frank can come down some, I don't think so. I think he still has the ability to put up those types of numbers.''

Manuel is going to wait before he agrees with things such as Rotisserie baseball rankings that project Ordonez as a more valuable player than Thomas.

"Hopefully, the both of them can have real big years,'' Manuel said. "That would be huge for us. It's hard to put him, right now, in Frank Thomas' category. Frank has done it for a long time. A long time.''

Ordonez is optimistic for the season--it is spring, after all--and is expecting a huge offensive show from a team batting .348 through 23 Cactus League games.

"We have a good lineup,'' he said. "Last year, we had a lot of people hurt. This year, everybody looks healthy. We hope we can be healthy all year. If we can do that, we'll be OK.''

The Sox' 3-6 hitters (Thomas, Ordonez, Konerko and Carlos Lee) all have fared well this spring. Thomas, a traditionally weak spring hitter, has the lowest average of the four at .317.

While Konerko has been impressive in Cactus League play, batting .474 (27-for-57), Ordonez isn't far behind at .444 (16-for-36) with a nine-game hitting streak and a team-high four home runs.

Ordonez recently was slowed by a sore left hand, but a recent bone scan came up negative. After missing a few games, Ordonez is ready to return to action, putting his style back on display.

"It's weird,'' Thomas said of Ordonez's hitting style "He's got one of those swings that's so short and compact that pitchers can't get in on him, and they can't pitch him away. He's got a bright, bright future. I just hope he maxes out his potential because he can be one of those very special players.''

1 to 1 of 1

Search For:
Search in:
And in:
Any Words All Words

News Categories

Totally biased Sox news from White Sox Interactive!

EXCLUSIVE Sox features from WSI.

Full Sox coverage featuring the unique WSI slant!

The Totally Biased Game Recap, another WSI EXCLUSIVE!

YOUR chance to be featured at White Sox Interactive!

The funniest and most-noteworthy posts from the Sox Clubhouse message board.

The internet's largest FREE Sox news database, sorted by month.

The internet's largest FREE Sox news database, sorted by day.

News Watch

Sep 14... McGrath's Last Gaffe?

July 15... Lipinski resigns; Trib still shackled!

Apr 13... Second City Rogers votes for Mediocrity (Again)

10/7... Gratuitous slap at Sox by McGrath, Rogers

4/9... Good News for Chicago & Sox Fans!

3/25... Trib's Last Hope: Zell Bust Up!

4/8... Bias be damned: Cubune CEO says keep Cubs!

10/30... Cubune pours cold water on Sox championship

10/3... Pot Smoking leads Cubune's Sox playoff coverage!

9/29... Cubune chokes on Sox success

WSI News System Page Views: 30,017,600