In Defense of Ozzie

Unfortunately, last night’s blown 5-0 lead and eventual 12-5 loss to the Tigers was pretty typical of how things have gone for the Sox this season. 

While Freddy Garcia, coasting with a five-run lead through four, wasn’t exactly smacked around he coughed up the lead nonetheless and left with the score tied 5-5. After that, it was the bullpen and a non-existent offense that did us in.
Apparently Ozzie walked into the clubhouse after the game and found some players, after the “embarrassing” loss, watching football. Much of Ozzie’s tirade is not suitable for a family blog, but he basically made the point that the Sox might be eliminated, but the season isn’t over for him.
Amen. 
There were 36,000 fans in the stands and many more watching from afar that expected the Sox to give a good effort. They would have thoroughly enjoyed the South Siders play the role of the spoiler as the third best team in the A.L. Central, eliminated or not. But it seems that the dismal performance didn’t have as much effect on the players as it did the unhappy fans. Count me as one.
Equally as disappointing is that Sox captain Paul Konerko agreed with Ozzie, but said he didn’t see players watching television. What? He didn’t see them? I don’t think Yankee captain Derek Jeter would have been oblivious to what was going on much less have stood for his teammates accepting the loss so easily. I’m a Konerko fan, but this isn’t leadership.
The fans, at least this fan, has never doubted where Ozzie’s heart is–he’s all about winning and playing the right way. But he can’t do it alone. The leaders in the clubhouse, like Paulie, have to show the way as well.
Maybe they should call Jeter for advice.

1 Comment

Amen, Art.

Konerko has been a cornerstone of this team for more than a decade. Always appreciate his contributions.

But he’s not a vocal leader in any way. Called out Frank ONCE and that’s it.

This team has many flaws — inconsistent offense, base-cloggers, bullpen, defense top the list. But leadership and the ability to grind is right up there. This team fell off a cliff after Williams made the deals for Peavy and Rios.

I hope Kenny Williams takes a jack-hammer to the every day guys and brings in more guys with an edge.

Minnesota does play with that edge — and that’s why the Twinkies are pressuring the Tigers to the wire in a division that was there to be taken.

I’m always there from mid-February until the end of the season — and then I’m searching for hot stove news. But I’m ready for this season to be OVAH.

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