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View Full Version : Interesting Guillen quote about fundamentals


caulfield12
02-14-2007, 07:08 AM
"Last year I was the only manager to make his ballclub practice bunting and hit-and-run every day for a week," Guillen said of the remedial work during the regular season. "That's embarrassing for a big-league club, [but] players weren't doing what they were supposed to be doing from the beginning. They were wasting my time, wasting my energy. We were pathetic, very bad. And I take the blame."

This was right before the series on the road at Toronto that we actually played for a stretch like the 05 team.

It's almost like he is giving himself a "pass" for giving up on this in the middle of the season last year....he punished and embarassed and threw them under the bus, yet nothing really changed. No other team did it! It's almost like million dollar players shouldn't be punished, if he forced them to do it too long the MLBPA would get on him! Unfortunately, the mindset of the team was already imprinted the first two months with Thome and Dye bopping and Pods staying parked at first, when he managed to get on.

Hopefully the same thing doesn't happen again. I'll be convinced when AJ and Crede start laying down bunts (successfully) at least once a month. AJ, I can envision, but Joe?

WhiteSox5187
02-14-2007, 09:08 AM
I'm not so sure if I want to take the bat out of Crede's hands, but I certainly understand where Ozzie is coming from. It's the team that gets the little things done that win a ton of ballgames (ala the Twins), and the failure to get the little things done really hurt the Sox last year (it wasn't the primary reason for their failure though) and if they can return to their '05 form and get the little things done well then obviously they are in much better shape. Hopefully they will get better and we can see them return to their dominating form in one run games.

mrwag
02-14-2007, 09:42 AM
I re-watched the game 1 World Series DVD the other day, and totally forgot about Everett laying down a sac bunt, the DH of all people. The Sox ended up manufacturing a run that inning, too. Think Ozzie would ask Thome to do that?

skobabe8
02-14-2007, 09:47 AM
I'm not so sure if I want to take the bat out of Crede's hands, but I certainly understand where Ozzie is coming from. It's the team that gets the little things done that win a ton of ballgames (ala the Twins), and the failure to get the little things done really hurt the Sox last year (it wasn't the primary reason for their failure though) and if they can return to their '05 form and get the little things done well then obviously they are in much better shape. Hopefully they will get better and we can see them return to their dominating form in one run games.

I think everyone except Konerko should be ready to bunt. I don't want Thome to bunt, necessarily, but I would like him to do something that forces the infield to play honest against him. Slap it down to third, check swing it down there, bunt it, i dont care. If he did that a few times and started getting on base every time, teams are gonna have to adjust and play the right side of the infield more straight up.

caulfield12
02-14-2007, 10:12 AM
I think everyone except Konerko should be ready to bunt. I don't want Thome to bunt, necessarily, but I would like him to do something that forces the infield to play honest against him. Slap it down to third, check swing it down there, bunt it, i dont care. If he did that a few times and started getting on base every time, teams are gonna have to adjust and play the right side of the infield more straight up.

I think Ortiz did it once or twice last year, down the 3B line against the shift.

I'm not so sure about JD bunting, he's really slow, depends on who's on base in front of him....seems like a recipe for a double play though.

RedHeadPaleHoser
02-14-2007, 10:21 AM
I think that is another weapon in the arsenal....if Thome ends up bunting, he could pull the infield in and help get the shift out of the equation...imagine if infields played at DP depth, with less of a shift and he lays one down - sure, he'd probably be out at 1st but imagine the play the pitcher would have to make to get the runner at second.

I don't want to see the bat out of anyone's hands either, but too often we ended up in a DP situation with no one to lay down a decent bunt, or we swung for the fences....I'd rather pull the defenses in, then bury them with the timely hit.

Jurr
02-14-2007, 10:23 AM
Last year, during the stretch run, the pitching got a little better, but the offense collapsed due to its inefficiency. I was fuming for the months of August and September about Ozzie turning into Earl Weaver. It looked like he couldn't get any "smart ball" going at all. Where were the bunts, hitting to the right side of the infield to move guys over, stealing bases, etc???

The Sox became the typical station to station team, ala 2000-2004. It kept the pressure off of opposing pitchers, who were allowed to get comfortable, and it showed.

Yes, this team has a lot more power than the 2005 club. When you replace Carl Everett with Jim Thome, you're going to add a lot of homerun potential.
However, I believe that the thing the '05 Sox could do so well was get an early lead and put the pressure on. How many times did you see (in '05) Pods get a walk or a base hit, Gooch get him over, then Everett or Konerko knock him in with a single or a stolen 3rd/sac fly combo? Last year, it looked like the Sox were not wanting to sacrifice hitters because they could possibly be driven in by a 3 run homer. It's not a consistent way to score runs throughout a year, especially late in the year.

Ozzie has to set the tone in February and March. In '04 he knew what needed to be fixed the next year, and this year is no different. It's pretty much the same team, and some adjustments in mindset need to be made.

rdwj
02-14-2007, 10:24 AM
I think everyone except Konerko should be ready to bunt.

Paulie hits into a TON of DP's. I don't see any reason he shouldn't be ready too.

SouthSideSid
02-14-2007, 10:26 AM
Bunts aren't the only thing that measures "fundamentals." I would love to see the Sox get more aggressive running the bases. (Not that Joey ever put up a stop sign at third base). More steals and hit-and-runs to manufacture those runs.
I freaking love seeing HRs, but I love seeing Ws even more

skobabe8
02-14-2007, 10:56 AM
Paulie hits into a TON of DP's. I don't see any reason he shouldn't be ready too.

Just dont want to see him hurt himself tryin, thats all. I have faith in everyone else.

gobears1987
02-14-2007, 11:10 AM
Ozzie can't be blamed for last year. (Outside of putting Mac in CF that is) The team failed because the pitching staff under-performed. Pitching is everything in baseball. That is especially true in the AL.

Paulwny
02-14-2007, 11:22 AM
At one time all baseball fundamentals were taught at the minor league level. The blame for a player not knowing these fundamentals should be placed on the shoulders of the minor league instructors.
The sox are not alone in this lack of prep.

oeo
02-14-2007, 11:27 AM
It's almost like he is giving himself a "pass" for giving up on this in the middle of the season last year....he punished and embarassed and threw them under the bus, yet nothing really changed. No other team did it! It's almost like million dollar players shouldn't be punished, if he forced them to do it too long the MLBPA would get on him! Unfortunately, the mindset of the team was already imprinted the first two months with Thome and Dye bopping and Pods staying parked at first, when he managed to get on.

Hopefully the same thing doesn't happen again. I'll be convinced when AJ and Crede start laying down bunts (successfully) at least once a month. AJ, I can envision, but Joe?

I know Ozzie said to blame him, but I think most of the blame should go to the players. They were the one's who got lazy. They shouldn't need to have bunting practice everyday; that's something they should already know how to do and do it when called upon. Ozzie probably felt like he was wasting his time, because "bunting practice" would work for one game, and then they would forget how to do it again.

skobabe8
02-14-2007, 11:27 AM
At one time all baseball fundamentals were taught at the minor league level. The blame for a player not knowing these fundamentals should be placed on the shoulders of the minor league instructors.
The sox are not alone in this lack of prep.

Thats a great point. What the hell are they doin down there? Why is there always such an obvious "MLB ready" gap between Twins players who are brought up and our guys?

rdwj
02-14-2007, 11:29 AM
Ozzie can't be blamed for last year. (Outside of putting Mac in CF that is) The team failed because the pitching staff under-performed. Pitching is everything in baseball. That is especially true in the AL.

Agree 100%. But, that Mac mistake cost us several games. Enough for post-season? Probably not.

oeo
02-14-2007, 11:31 AM
Thats a great point. What the hell are they doin down there? Why is there always such an obvious "MLB ready" gap between Twins players who are brought up and our guys?

You need to look to other organizations, as well, considering only Crede and Anderson came up through the Sox organization.

INSox56
02-14-2007, 11:35 AM
Every kind of situational hitting was nonexistent last year, it was pathetic. Our runs scored last year with a runner on 2nd or especially third and less than 2 outs was horrible. After a while, a runner on third and less than two outs didn't get me excited about scoring runs anymore because we'd **** it up 90% of the time. How do you NOT score that guy? Hell, I more or less didn't expect to score a run if we had a runner on 2nd and no outs.

Zisk77
02-14-2007, 12:00 PM
FWIW i do remember a few years back Konerko being asked to sacrifice bunt...he laid down a textbook bunt and got the job done.

I think Pods should always bunt for hit even in sac situations. He is shaky getting them down in sac situation but seems to lay down quality bunts when he doesn't square around. So I think he'll put more pressure on the defense and be more successful if he doesn't square.

caulfield12
02-14-2007, 01:00 PM
Thats a great point. What the hell are they doin down there? Why is there always such an obvious "MLB ready" gap between Twins players who are brought up and our guys?

Simple, players like Tyner, Punto, Bartlett, Castillo, Hocking had to learn how to bunt or they wouldn't have survived.

You never see Cuddyer, Morneau, Mauer or Hunter bunting...or, if so, VERY rarely. They mirror the middle of our line-up.

And the majority of those first group mentioned, they didn't come up with the Twins, they started their careers with other organizations.

Simply put, Gardenhire gets them all to buy into it at the big league level...that they HAVE to play this way, because their margin for success is so thin (see Sox in 2005) due to their payroll. The Twins' bullpen and fundamentals are what carried them over us last year, and in 02-04 as well.

Paulwny
02-14-2007, 01:10 PM
FWIW i do remember a few years back Konerko being asked to sacrifice bunt...he laid down a textbook bunt and got the job done.


He probably learned to bunt while in the Dodgers' farm system., the best at teaching fundamentals.

Hokiesox
02-14-2007, 01:21 PM
I re-watched the game 1 World Series DVD the other day, and totally forgot about Everett laying down a sac bunt, the DH of all people. The Sox ended up manufacturing a run that inning, too. Think Ozzie would ask Thome to do that?

If it meant moving a very fast runner into scoring position in a close playoff game, yes.

ondafarm
02-14-2007, 01:52 PM
At one time all baseball fundamentals were taught at the minor league level. The blame for a player not knowing these fundamentals should be placed on the shoulders of the minor league instructors.
The sox are not alone in this lack of prep.

I have to admit this was the largest difference between the japanese minor leagues and the american ones. (That and the language.)

One year I was actually promoted to play for the AAA team in spite of the manager there hating all foreigners. He wouldn't even let me sit on the bench during games or take batting practice during regular team time. He winked at my arriving early every day and getting my BP in. When a reporter asked him about why I wasn't playing, he growled something about how I couldn't bunt and anybody who couldn't bunt wouldn't play on his team. I was promptly sent back down to my AA team.

The next spring training I had several opportunities to play in intra squad and split squad games occasionally against the AAA manager. When he was there, either managing or watching, I always made a habit of dropping bunts down, typically for hits but occasionally for sacrifices. That ST, I was named the best bunter in camp and there was even talk of me being carried as the third catcher and deisgnated bunter with the big league squad. It didn't pan out but I was known as the next catcher up in case either of the two didn't perform.

We played a last scrimmage game just before breaking camp and he was pitching for the opposition. My first time up he threw one at my head, the next one aiming for the inside of the batters box. I squared and dropped it down the third base line for a bunt hit. The second time up he threw one behind me and then snapped off a wicked slider which I fouled off. Then he chased my feet and then tried a change up. I squared around and as everybody charged, I whacked at it and bounced it over the thirdbaseman for a nice double.

When reporters, assuming he'd be managing me at AAA that year, asked him about my performance he said foreigners can't bunt. I was assigned again to AA and spent the whole season there.

WhiteSox5187
02-14-2007, 04:29 PM
I have to admit this was the largest difference between the japanese minor leagues and the american ones. (That and the language.)

One year I was actually promoted to play for the AAA team in spite of the manager there hating all foreigners. He wouldn't even let me sit on the bench during games or take batting practice during regular team time. He winked at my arriving early every day and getting my BP in. When a reporter asked him about why I wasn't playing, he growled something about how I couldn't bunt and anybody who couldn't bunt wouldn't play on his team. I was promptly sent back down to my AA team.

The next spring training I had several opportunities to play in intra squad and split squad games occasionally against the AAA manager. When he was there, either managing or watching, I always made a habit of dropping bunts down, typically for hits but occasionally for sacrifices. That ST, I was named the best bunter in camp and there was even talk of me being carried as the third catcher and deisgnated bunter with the big league squad. It didn't pan out but I was known as the next catcher up in case either of the two didn't perform.

We played a last scrimmage game just before breaking camp and he was pitching for the opposition. My first time up he threw one at my head, the next one aiming for the inside of the batters box. I squared and dropped it down the third base line for a bunt hit. The second time up he threw one behind me and then snapped off a wicked slider which I fouled off. Then he chased my feet and then tried a change up. I squared around and as everybody charged, I whacked at it and bounced it over the thirdbaseman for a nice double.

When reporters, assuming he'd be managing me at AAA that year, asked him about my performance he said foreigners can't bunt. I was assigned again to AA and spent the whole season there.
What a jerk...if I were manager you'd be on my team...but then again, I'm only nineteen.

People are talking about Thome dropping down a bunt, and I gotta tell ya, there are times when I'd see the third baseman playing way over at second that I thought "Ooo, maybe..." but I am very reluctant to take the bat out of the hands of my three, four and five guys. Those guys are on the roster to drive runs in, not to move them over. Everyone else though is game for bunting in my book.

oeo
02-14-2007, 04:50 PM
Simple, players like Tyner, Punto, Bartlett, Castillo, Hocking had to learn how to bunt or they wouldn't have survived.

You never see Cuddyer, Morneau, Mauer or Hunter bunting...or, if so, VERY rarely. They mirror the middle of our line-up.

And the majority of those first group mentioned, they didn't come up with the Twins, they started their careers with other organizations.

Simply put, Gardenhire gets them all to buy into it at the big league level...that they HAVE to play this way, because their margin for success is so thin (see Sox in 2005) due to their payroll. The Twins' bullpen and fundamentals are what carried them over us last year, and in 02-04 as well.

I'm sorry, but this is wrong. They're not the mirror of our lineup, I've seen every one of those guys put bunts down multiple times. I've seen Hunter do it a ton of times...maybe you missed those games? They're obviously taught how to do it very early in their careers. AJ is from the Twins organization, and he can put some pretty good bunts down.

caulfield12
02-14-2007, 05:26 PM
I'm sorry, but this is wrong. They're not the mirror of our lineup, I've seen every one of those guys put bunts down multiple times. I've seen Hunter do it a ton of times...maybe you missed those games? They're obviously taught how to do it very early in their careers. AJ is from the Twins organization, and he can put some pretty good bunts down.


I looked through all of 05 and 06 and don't see a single "SH" for any of those four guys. Mauer might have done it earlier in his career...of course, sometimes they TRY to bunt and make outs at second or third or home, or they're not credited with a sacrifice.

Uribe, Iguchi and Pods are far and away are leaders in this category over the past two seasons.

Punto had 10 and Castillo 9 last year.

MisterB
02-14-2007, 05:34 PM
I looked through all of 05 and 06 and don't see a single "SH" for any of those four guys. Mauer might have done it earlier in his career...of course, sometimes they TRY to bunt and make outs at second or third or home, or they're not credited with a sacrifice.

Uribe, Iguchi and Pods are far and away are leaders in this category over the past two seasons.

Punto had 10 and Castillo 9 last year.

Mauer, Morneau, Hunter and Cuddyer have a combined 6 sac bunts for their careers. (Hunter two and Cuddyer four)

caulfield12
02-14-2007, 05:36 PM
Mauer, Morneau, Hunter and Cuddyer have a combined 6 sac bunts for their careers. (Hunter two and Cuddyer four)


Thanks. I don't see it from Morneau. I vaguely remember Hunter and Mauer doing it, and Cuddyer when he was a part-time player, but not in the last couple of seasons.

The unsung Henry Blanco had twice that amount in one season while playing for the Twinkies.

ondafarm
02-15-2007, 12:18 AM
People are talking about Thome dropping down a bunt, and I gotta tell ya, there are times when I'd see the third baseman playing way over at second that I thought "Ooo, maybe..." but I am very reluctant to take the bat out of the hands of my three, four and five guys. Those guys are on the roster to drive runs in, not to move them over. Everyone else though is game for bunting in my book.

The issue with Thome bunting is lefty righty match ups. Thome has an advantage hitting against most righties whereas Konerko, who normalyy follows him would have the advantage against lefties.

As an opposition manager, if Thome drops down a bunt I bring in a righty and take my chances on PK Dye Crede. That means I probably can get out of the inning.

WhiteSox5187
02-15-2007, 12:49 AM
The issue with Thome bunting is lefty righty match ups. Thome has an advantage hitting against most righties whereas Konerko, who normalyy follows him would have the advantage against lefties.

As an opposition manager, if Thome drops down a bunt I bring in a righty and take my chances on PK Dye Crede. That means I probably can get out of the inning.
I understand...I just don't think Thome, Konerko or Dye should be bunting...well, maybe JD. Their job on the team is to drive those runners in. If we follow the idea of "Get 'em on, get 'em over and get 'em in" then Pods/Erstad have to get on, Iguchi has to get 'em over and those guys have to get them in. Paul Konerko is not getting paid to lay down sac bunts.

Iguana775
02-15-2007, 10:21 AM
I think this is a reason that they went out and got Erstad. He is a pretty fumdamental player and very good on the bases. exactly the type of player Ozzie wants. A true grinder.

Now, if he would just keep Mac out of CF the whole year....

JB98
02-16-2007, 09:22 PM
Mauer, Morneau, Hunter and Cuddyer have a combined 6 sac bunts for their careers. (Hunter two and Cuddyer four)

Good research. I hate it when people get on their high horse about how guys like Thome and Konerko should be bunting. Bull****. Players should play to their strengths. Thome and Konerko are guys who bring extra-base power. Their job is to knock in runners, not move them over. Guys who hit 3-5 in the lineup are almost NEVER asked to bunt, on any team, in any organization.

The guys who are batting 1-2 and 7-9 need to be playing the small ball. Last year, the guys in those spots in our order did not get the job done in that regard. That's where the problem lies, and Ozzie is rightfully addressing it.

JD, Thome and Konerko all had monster years last year, and it didn't get us anywhere. Obviously, those guys are the least of our worries.

Grzegorz
02-16-2007, 09:48 PM
Can managers get back to the "fundamentals"?