Ozzie Guillen, on his blunt managerial style:
When you’re honest, everything’s out there. That’s the way it is. That’s the way baseball should be. That’s why a lot of managers get fired. Because they worry about what to say, what to do, who to please.
Getting fired? That’s the last thing I worry about. Believe me, because that day will come. Sooner or later, that day will come. Because I’m not going to retire. They will have to fire me. I will find the way to get fired because I want to go home. I’m not going to resign.
But that’s what every guy does. Name me one guy. Bobby Cox, he might drop dead on the field and not have the chance to get fired. But everybody in this game, sooner or later they’re gone. That’s part of the game. If I’m going to fired, everything in my office, everything, is going on eBay, and I’m going to give that money to somebody else. I don’t want to see that stuff anymore.
Guillen is one of my favorite managers, which is really saying something because I’m a lifelong Twins fan. When the White Sox struggle–like they are right now, in third place and below .500–Guillen makes for an exceptionally easy target. He’s loud, outspoken, and sometimes just flat-out goofy, and says something just about every day that either comes across as amusing or annoying depending on how the team is doing.
However, at the end of the day he’s 502-448 (.528) since taking over as manager in 2004, has a chance to finish above .500 for the fifth time in six seasons, and is just four years removed from leading the White Sox to their first World Series title since 1917. The day he gets fired (or “drops dead on the field”) is the day the White Sox probably become less successful and definitely become less interesting.
The Mets have begun working outfielder Jay Bruce and second baseman Neil Walker at first base as potential insurance in the event Lucas Duda continues to experience back discomfort, Mike Puma of the New York Post reports. Duda has been sidelined recently due to back spasms and missed all but 47 games last season as a result of a stress fracture in his lower back.
Manager Terry Collins spoke about Bruce’s work at first base on Sunday, saying, “I liked everything I saw today. “It looks like he’s got the athleticism, he’s got the hands, he’s got the arm angle. He made some throws in our drills that you wouldn’t expect an outfielder to be able to make, but yet he does. If that’s where we have to go, I think we’ll be fine.”
Bruce has only three games’ worth of experience at first base at the major league level, but still has high expectations for himself. He said, “I am going to work at it. I want to give myself a chance and the team a chance. I am not going to go over there and be a butcher. It’s just not the way I go about my business on the baseball field and it wouldn’t be fair to the team if I wasn’t capable to do it, so I am going to work at it and we’ll see what happens.”
The Mets made Bruce available via trade over the offseason but didn’t get an offer that whet their appetite. As a result, Michael Conforto appears to be the odd man out in the Mets’ crowded outfield.
Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis has been diagnosed with a strained rotator cuff in his right shoulder, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian reports. Kipnis has received a cortisone shot and will be shut down from throwing for the next four to five days.
There’s a lot of spring left, so it’s perfectly sensible for the Indians to play it safe with their star player. The club already had Kipnis on a shoulder strengthening program.
Kipnis, 29, helped the Indians to the playoffs after batting .275/.343/.469 with 23 home runs, 92 RBI, 91 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases in 688 plate appearances during the regular season last year. He then helped the Indians reach Game 7 of the World Series against the Cubs, where they were eventually stopped, as he provided a .741 OPS including four homers and eight RBI in 15 playoff games.