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View Full Version : The Moron column count '02: Flubs 11, Sox 3


cheeses_h_rice
04-16-2002, 11:00 AM
:moron

Hey, guess what, Scum Sox fans? It's your lucky day -- a column by yours truly devoted almost entirely to you.

Except, of course, my obligatory slams on your lousy "ballmall," eye-rolling comparisons to my shrine, Wrigley Field, etc.
__

I give this one a 3, since he seems to love kissing Cleveland's ass while only grudgingly giving the Sox a chance.

5=Extremely positive
4=positive
3=equal parts positive and negative
2=negative
1=extremely negative

That makes the totals (columns/points/average points):

Flubs 11/42/3.82
Sox 3/10/3.33


http://www.suntimes.com/output/mariotti/cst-spt-jay16.html

Sox can silence dia-Tribe

April 16, 2002

BY JAY MARIOTTI SUN-TIMES COLUMNIST


If you can't beat them, outgrow them. That's the new slogan of the White Sox, who have borrowed the staple of Wrigley Field horticulture--ivy, I shudder--as part of a $13 million reclamation attempt to soften the feel of their dreary ballmall. They've redesigned center field, brightened up concession stands, enclosed some corridors, renovated restrooms and laid a few bricks around the main concourse.

''It's pretty,'' Jose Valentin said.

But it's also like putting a Band-Aid on a ruptured kidney. And it's not going to lure more fans to (Name For Rent) Park, which should have been adorned with these bells and whistles when it opened 11 years ago. Nice as it is to see bossman Jerry Reinsdorf commit resources for fixer-upping and fan-friendliness, the traditional demand of the Sox fan isn't to bask in more attractive surroundings.

It's to watch winning ball. If you win on the South Side, they will come (sort of), and starting tonight, the Sox either will make an early statement about their intentions this year or become the latest roadkill of the rampaging Cleveland Indians. Here in mid-April, with the Blackhawks about to begin the Stanley Cup playoffs and the Bulls still presumably playing, I'm not about to declare this a critical three-game series. But what it will do is establish a mood for the season. Having beaten up on the Orioles, Tigers and other lowly forms of American League life, are the Sox worthy of hanging with the newfangled Tribe?

This is a rivalry never lacking in bravado or chippy elements. Over the last decade, the Indians not only have enjoyed more on-field prosperity than the White Sox-- ruining a potential golden era at Comiskey Park--but have blown them away as a money-making machine. In the offseason, they shocked the sport by dramatically downsizing their payroll, dumping established stars and emphasizing a team-first approach. Their obituary was roundly written in spring training, a sentiment shared by many in Sox camp. Yet here are the Indians, 11-1 with a 10-game winning streak, making new general manager Mark Shapiro look sharper than under-the-gun Sox counterpart Kenny Williams.

It was Shapiro who launched a salvo at the Sox a few weeks ago, saying, ''I know some of the White Sox players have already given themselves the division, but last time I checked, the Twins were a pretty good team. I expect a three-team race.'' Piling on was new outfield addition Matt Lawton, who knew the Sox' deficiencies from his days in Minnesota. ''They are missing pitching and defense,'' he said. ''None of the teams in the division is as balanced as us.''

Yet in the end, one of Shapiro's castoffs could be the X-factor that beats him. Also cut loose in the purge, along with Robbie Alomar and Juan Gonzalez, was Kenny Lofton and his $8 million salary. He had no takers in free agency and appeared to be drifting out of the game when Williams pitched an offer: Come home, take an incentive-packed $1million deal and prove 29 other ballclubs wrong. So far, Lofton has played like the All-Star leadoff man of yesteryear--rapping out multiple hits, stealing bases, scoring runs, covering ground under the planted vines in center.

Now, he aims at proving his old team wrong. He claims he doesn't care about the Indians, calling them ''another team'' coming to town. But it's interesting how he volunteers a math equation that suggests he's worth 20 games to the Sox.

''This team won 83 games last year and was banged up,'' Lofton said. ''Take 83 and add 20, and that's 103 wins.''

And a division title.

It will take tough talk and performances to make the playoffs. Certainly, the Sox weren't cowering from the Cleveland invasion after a 13-4 bashing of Baltimore on a lovely Monday afternoon. ''I think we need to derail them a little,'' said winning pitcher Jon Garland, awfully puffy for a guy struggling in his big-league infancy. ''Come out, attack, jump all over them, cool them down a bit.''

The Sox, armed with one of baseball's potent lineups, have few problems attacking any pitcher. That should include Chuck Finley, who allegedly was attacked two weeks ago by his wife, actress and Whitesnake video vixen Tawny Kitaen. Frank Thomas, buoyed by a tremendous Opening Day ovation by forgiving Sox fans, will have a huge year. Magglio Ordonez is big enough to have his own Bobblehead Day. There are no worries about an offense with Paul Konerko, Carlos Lee, Ray Durham and Valentin. The scoreboard might explode at a record pace this year.

The concern, of course, is whether they can pitch it and catch it. Wasn't it just two years ago when Ron Schueler, then the GM, was comparing his arm prospects to the greatest in baseball? Weren't the Sox supposed to have a young pitching dynasty in progress, a new-millennium version of the Atlanta Braves? Well, a lot of them either hurt their arms or were dealt away by an impatient Williams, leaving them an excellent platinum-blond ace in Mark Buehrle and a lot of questions.

One of them, 6-11 Jon (The Bigger Unit) Rauch, goes tonight in his first Sox start. He's also making history as the tallest pitcher ever to start a major-league game. If you take out a tape measure, I'm sure he's a 7-footer, but he has an aversion to his height and doesn't like being compared to 6-10 Randy Johnson, who previously held the record. Pure and simple, if Rauch, Garland and Danny Wright are able to hold their own this season, the Sox can win the division. If not, forget it. You can be darn sure the Sox, having spent $20 million in ballpark improvements the last two years and not likely to peddle naming rights any time soon in a tough economy, won't be spending for a big-time starter in July.

It would help the Sox' psyche to win at least two of three. At the same time, it would momentarily throw a speed bump into the Cleveland joyride, although not for long. Jim Thome and Ellis Burks are still around with their thunder bats. The pitching is young and deep. Smart veterans, including former Cub Ricky Gutierrez, are everywhere. ''I was surprised how many people jumped ship on us,'' Travis Fryman said. ''I kept looking around the locker room and saying, 'Do they see all the people I still see around here?' We're much better than people ever gave us credit for. In my opinion, we're still the best team in the division.''

This is what fans love: fun jostling and great competition. Ivy, palm trees, pricker bushes--the view doesn't matter if the Sox shut up the Indians and win the AL Central. Just don't install any windscreens.

RichH55
04-16-2002, 11:05 AM
Yes I'm sure Lofton thinks he himself is worth 20 games.....all those guys coming back from injury, the addition of a veteran starter, another year of maturity of most kids, Carlos Lee putting up better numbers, and Frank Coming back*I know he only has a couple of MVPs mind you....but I'm sure those things didnt factor in at all

Chisox353014
04-16-2002, 11:15 AM
How will we ever compete with Cleveland? They have "former Cub Ricky Gutierrez" in their clubhouse!! He's such a smart veteran! AHHH! Let's just give up now!

RichH55
04-16-2002, 11:18 AM
Originally posted by Chisox353014
How will we ever compete with Cleveland? They have "former Cub Ricky Gutierrez" in their clubhouse!! He's such a smart veteran! AHHH! Let's just give up now!


What about 50 HR man Brady Anderson? :o: :o: :o:

Chisox353014
04-16-2002, 11:29 AM
Originally posted by RichH55



What about 50 HR man Brady Anderson? :o: :o: :o:

OMG!
AHHHHHRRRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHH!
*Crashes through plate glass window in terror*

RichH55
04-16-2002, 11:36 AM
Originally posted by Chisox353014


OMG!
AHHHHHRRRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHH!
*Crashes through plate glass window in terror*

:moron
And of course the Sox, who havent draw more than 9 people since roughly 1865(and only then in the post war boom).....could never have the acumen to bring in a guy of such talent as Brady Anderson, who hit 50 HR, which is almost good enough to be mentioned in the same breath as Sammy Sosa. I've also heard(via him signing with a club other than the White Sox) that he is a great clubhouse guy(damn shame he didnt sign with the Sox, because then I could go Albert Belle on that guys ass and claim he ate puppies or something of the like.) Sox fans deserve better than the ballmall and what Cheap JR(who ran off Jordan, which I mention every though this is a baseball column) and could use a 50 HR talent like Brady

:angry:

Chisox353014
04-16-2002, 11:58 AM
Bad move by the Sun-Times!
I just noticed with their newly redesigned website, they now have a direct email link to Moronotti for the first time. Something tells me there may be a few Sox fans (among others) who will see fit to use that link.

RichH55
04-16-2002, 12:10 PM
Originally posted by Chisox353014
Bad move by the Sun-Times!
I just noticed with their newly redesigned website, they now have a direct email link to Moronotti for the first time. Something tells me there may be a few Sox fans (among others) who will see fit to use that link.


Even better for Jay......Howard Stern factor....those who hate him are just as good for him and those who like him(if not better)....damn shame

DVG
04-17-2002, 11:58 PM
Originally posted by Chisox353014
Bad move by the Sun-Times!
I just noticed with their newly redesigned website, they now have a direct email link to Moronotti for the first time. Something tells me there may be a few Sox fans (among others) who will see fit to use that link.



Bad move? Are you kidding?? The Sun-Times and Mariotti are
going to love it! It'll let the paper know that many people take
Mariotti's stuff seriously, and Mariotti will take great delight knowing just how many people he is ticking off.