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Lip Man 1
04-09-2006, 11:02 PM
Gang:

This week in the print edition of The Sporting News is a terrific story on the White Sox and the 2006 season by Sean Deveney. Itís on pages 30 - 36. I thought it was very good and recommend it highly.

What I particularly liked about it was Deveneyís take on what this season means to the franchise Ďoff the field...í

So with that in mind I wanted to post some of it. This is just a small part of the six full pages to promote discussion. Feel free to get the story yourself (Florida is on the cover.)

"The White Sox have the cityís attention. Now they have to keep it. "People in this city responded to what we accomplished last year," first baseman Paul Konerko says. "But if we want them to continue to respond, we have to continue those accomplishments."

"The White Sox have harped on avoiding complacency and staying hungry but a 10-19-2 Cactus League record was a head scratcher. Sure it was only spring training, but there seemed to be a lack of hunger."

"The pressure to win again is probably greater on the White Sox than on any recent champion. Thatís because a key aspect of general manager Kenny Williamsí plan has been to think on a grand scale, to treat the franchise like a big market team it should be. Because of low attendance caused by the labor strike, the team conducted itself like a middle market team even though itís in the countryís third most populous metropolitan area."

"People who talk about why we didnít win for all that time forget we had s@#$ teams," said Ozzie Guillen. "Now we are getting better players. Itís easier to win that way."

"If the White Sox flop this year, if they finish behind the Indians or the Twins the long term impact of their championship will be diminished."

"The importance of this season is not so much in repeating. Itís in solidifying a new view of the White Sox, in Chicago and across the nation. "The thing is sustained success," says Williams. "We had a negative perception we wanted to change. Winning the World Series was a big step. But it has to be sustained in order to lift us in our market. People have to know that we are going to do what it takes to be winners every year."

"At stake is not just another trophy but a reputation. Of eager fans rooting for a team no longer considered second-class."

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Also in this weekís Sports Illustrated they have a great story on why the A.L. is so much more dominant then the N.L. They had some stats that I didnít realize and gives all of us a solid benchmark to determine if the Sox can get back to the post-season again.

"From 2001 through 2005, 20 American League teams won 93 games or more, but four of them didnít make the playoffs! Only 12 National League teams won that many games in the same period...they all made the playoffs."

So it looks like 93 wins is the Ď in / outí mark for the post season.


Some other interesting comments.

"With their resources you almost expect Boston and New York to win 95 to 100 games every season. That makes the competition that much harder for everybody else. Our initial plan was to put together a team that could win 88 to 90 games a year which would give you a chance to win (a playoff spot) every year. Thereís no question that things have changed drastically since then. Now we have to win 93 to 95 games to be a consistent contender and with a $60 million dollar payroll I donít know if that can be done year after year." Ė Indians G.M. Mark Shapiro

"People kept saying we didnít score a lot of runs. Look at the pitching we see in this division every night. Itís the best pitching of any division in baseball." Ė Ozzie Guillen.

"There is not a team in the A.L. that has not improved to some extent this year. Thatís what you come to expect when you play in the American League. Itís a hyper-competitive league." ĖAís G.M. Billy Beane.

Lip

santo=dorf
04-09-2006, 11:18 PM
That was agreat SI article. I loved how they showed all of the different players switching leagues. The ranking of teams by GM's was interesting as well.

34 Inch Stick
04-10-2006, 11:37 AM
Now we have to win 93 to 95 games to be a consistent contender and with a $60 million dollar payroll I donít know if that can be done year after year." Ė Indians G.M. Mark Shapiro

"
Lip

Given this info and understanding the finances of the Royals and Twins, doesn't this give the Sox the ability to be the Yankees of the Central by only spending 90 million a year.