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View Full Version : Ozzie, It's Time for a Change


Chisoxfn
09-22-2008, 03:43 PM
http://www.chisport.com/?p=81


The Sox September struggles have been blamed on a tired rotation and bullpen, but the Sox offense has it’s problems too. The club has averaged 4.98 runs per game on the season, but in September, they are averaging just 4.15 a game, and have scored 3 or fewer runs in 10 games (19 Total).

It would be easy to put an asterisk next to this as run production is expected to slide when you lose the league’s MVP (Carlos Quentin). However, Paul Konerko’s re-surgence cancels out Quentin’s loss.

The real reason for the drop-off is a combination of the following (stats are based upon the players production over the past 30 days):

1. Jermaine Dye: .267 AVG, .276 OBP, 3 HR, 10 RBI
2. Alexei Ramirez: .242 AVG, .283 OBP, 5 HR, 15 RBI
3. Jim Thome: .221 AVG, .303 OBP, 7 HR, 15 RBI
4. AJ Pierzynski: .250 AVG, .250 OBP, 0 HR, 4 RBI
5. Nick Swisher: .133 AVG, .205 OBP, 3 HR, 6 RBI

Bottom Line:
Three Of the Five Hitter’s included on the above list have spent a significant portion of September in the top 5 spots in the lineup. Ozzie talks about going with the hot-hand and it’s time he makes some adjustments to the lineup to reflect such:

1. Konerko Bat’s 3rd. Konerko is batting .318 with 6 HR’s over the past month and has been the Sox best run-producer. Moving him into the 3 spot will give our best run producer more opportunities to “produce” runs.

2. Play Wise. Wise may be a career minor leaguer, but the man is hot (.289, 4 HR, 10 RBI, 14 Games). As long as Wise is producing, there is no reason to not have him penciled into the #2 spot of the lineup.

3. Less Bunting. This is both against Ozzie’s approach as well as my personal approach. I am a proponent of bunting and manufacturing runs, but the White Sox have consistently failed in executing and it’s time Ozzie takes this managerial tactic out to the pasture.

My New Lineup (w/o Griffey):
1. Orlando Cabrera - SS
2. Dwayne Wise - LF
3. Paul Konerko - 1B
4. Jim Thome - DH
5. Jermaine Dye - RF
6. AJ Pierzynski - C
7. Alexei Ramirez - 2B
8. Juan Uribe - 3B
9. Brian Anderson - CF

My New Lineup (w/ Griffey):
1. Orlando Cabrera - SS
2. Dwayne Wise - LF
3. Paul Konerko - 1B
4. Jim Thome - DH
5. Jermaine Dye - RF
6. Ken Griffey Jr. - CF
7. Alexei Ramirez - 2B
8. AJ Pierzynski - C
9. Juan Uribe - 3B



The above is an article I wrote for a Chicago Sports site. Sox fans have been watching the offense struggle all month and Ozzie has began making adjustments but I really believe now is the time to make some more adjustments to ensure your hottest bats are getting up to the plate as often as possible.

The reality is Dye/Thome/AJP have been struggling and now is a time to move Paulie up and to take advantage of Wise who is playing out of his mind.

Curious to see if others believe now is a good time for a change or if they feel the Sox should stick back and that it's too risky since they are about to embark on a 3 game set with the 2nd place Twins (I like the sound of 2nd place Twins so hopefully it stays that way).

hi im skot
09-22-2008, 03:49 PM
Konerko's hot stretch doesn't "cancel out" Quentin's production...

Chisoxfn
09-22-2008, 03:51 PM
Konerko's hot stretch doesn't "cancel out" Quentin's production...
I realize it would be great to get production from Konerko & Quentin at the same time, but the reality is that Konerko is producing at a Quentin like level in September (when he's been on the field) and Quentin's replacement has performed as good as Paulie had for the first 3/4th's of the season (thats not necessarily a good thing either).

Of course it would be sweet to have Paulie producing and a healthy Quentin in the lineup as that would make the offense better than it has been all season.

However, Paulie has essentially replaced Quentin (maybe not quite as good, but he's been similar, albeit in a lower spot in the order which has prevented him from driving in as many runs). That is why it is time for Ozzie to move him up in the lineup, especially with the way Thome/Dye have been playing as of late.

Chisoxfn
09-22-2008, 03:54 PM
On a sidenote, sorry, didn't realize there was another topic on potential lineup changes, so if a mod wants to they can move this thread into that one.

Adele_H
09-22-2008, 03:59 PM
Jason,

Sox have enough talent to win the division regardless of the line-up order when they employ a more fundamentally sound approach (1st inning vs. Zack Grienke at the Cell in July, for example).

If, however, they continue to give up the outer half of the plate, and continue to worship at the altar of HR.... they will continue to struggle against good pitching, especially on the road.

As for Quentin, he looked tired, a bit out of whack even before the injury, so there is no guarantee he would be putting up 1000 OPS in September. Konerko's improved play at least partially covered for his loss. However, Dye is clearly not handling the pressure of having to be The Man in TCQ's absence.

asindc
09-22-2008, 04:03 PM
I like the proposed lineups in either case. I really hope Wise is batting 2nd in all 3 games in Minny.

jabrch
09-22-2008, 04:16 PM
There is no reason to jerk with the lineup. Let hitters hit - either they will or they won't. Moving them up or down won't change that. Using one month sample size to make decisions is really a bad idea.

Konerko05
09-22-2008, 04:19 PM
There is no reason to jerk with the lineup. Let hitters hit - either they will or they won't. Moving them up or down won't change that. Using one month sample size to make decisions is really a bad idea.

You don't think the order of a lineup matters? Since Cabrera is one of the only guys on the team actually hitting, I'd rather have someone behind him who can drive him in. Dye certainly isn't getting it done.

jabrch
09-22-2008, 04:26 PM
You don't think the order of a lineup matters? Since Cabrera is one of the only guys on the team actually hitting, I'd rather have someone behind him who can drive him in. Dye certainly isn't getting it done.

If we are going to assume half our team won't hit, we are toast. Shuffling the deck chairs on the titanic won't make it float.

If this team is going to win, we need the lineup to hit. We can't assume half our lineup won't hit, and move that entire half together.

And no - I don't think (with a few exceptions) that the order of a lineup means a thing. Use logic, put good hitters where they belong, and either they hit or the don't hit. Moving them up and down doesn't change that much.

Konerko05
09-22-2008, 04:33 PM
If we are going to assume half our team won't hit, we are toast. Shuffling the deck chairs on the titanic won't make it float.

If this team is going to win, we need the lineup to hit. We can't assume half our lineup won't hit, and move that entire half together.

And no - I don't think (with a few exceptions) that the order of a lineup means a thing. Use logic, put good hitters where they belong, and either they hit or the don't hit. Moving them up and down doesn't change that much.

The main move that should be made is moving Konerko to the 3 spot. Cabrera is doing his job. He is getting on as the lead off hitter. All of that goes to waste when he is not scoring.

It's not about assuming half the lineup won't hit. It's about winning games. Our offense has sucked lately. Anything to give the Sox a better chance to win is a good idea. Dye has been brutal and it's having a strong effect on the top of the order and our offense as a whole.

There is a reason why teams have their best hitter bat 3rd. Right now, Konerko is the Sox best hitter. This isn't using a one month sample size. I'm not talking about batting Uribe 3rd because he is hot for the month. Konerko was the Sox best hitter when we won the World Series. He is also hitting .286 with a .909 OPS in the second half. There is nothing wrong with moving him to the 3 spot. It gives the Sox the best chance to win.

Bob G
09-22-2008, 05:17 PM
I like the line up (w/o Griffey) for the Twins series - it also gives us better outfield defense and more speed which we'll need. I say email it to Ozzie right now!!

pmck003
09-22-2008, 05:25 PM
I wouldn't mind seeing Dye and Paulie switch but I could also see Dye breaking out again. Its right to say that it won't matter too much if the majority of the team doesn't hit better and I really don't know how much a lineup change helps that.

kidmccarthy
09-22-2008, 06:02 PM
The thing about that lineup that makes me sick is we gave up (at the time) our best two pitching prospects and sweeney, for a guy who doesnt even crack either lineup. Wow, I hope Swisher can bounce back.

BigP50
09-22-2008, 06:04 PM
like the idea of Wise batting 2nd. When AJ first started batting in the 2 hole it made Ozzie look like a genius but now it's just stupid.

Have OC get a lead off double or single then have Wise move him over.

jabrch
09-22-2008, 06:15 PM
I can't understand for the life of me why you'd move Dwayne Wise to the top of the order. Put guys up there you want hitting more. Wise is a great story - and I have no problem with him if we need him with TCQ out. But hit him in the bottom of the order. Why are you forcing him to the top to see more ABs? AJ has done a nice job hitting up there.

I say we should stick with the girl that we took to the dance.

Frankfan4life
09-22-2008, 07:43 PM
I like the line up (w/o Griffey) for the Twins series - it also gives us better outfield defense and more speed which we'll need. I say email it to Ozzie right now!!I also would like to see that lineup against the Twinkies. Let's do it Ozzie!!!