This is a fabulous idea:
Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen will
join Fox Sports as an analyst for the World Series. He will have
pregame and postgame duties. Guillen,
known for profanity-laced criticism of his own team at times, just
completed his sixth season as manager of the White Sox.
I know a couple of sports writers. One of them spends a fair amount of time around the White Sox. Guillen, I’m told, will hold court for long, off-the-record stretches before ballgames just talking about whatever pops into his head. Politics, entertainment, social issues, sex, race, fans in the stands during batting practice, you name it. It’s almost all hilarious and almost all 100% completely unfit for television or public consumption of any kind. The man is brutally honest, but he is the last guy I’d want to put in front of a camera to talk if I was at all worried about my job security as a television producer.
But I’m not a producer. I’m a fan who wants to be entertained. Which means that, unlike when stiffs like Kevin Kennedy and Mark Grace are the big draw, I am almost certain to watch the FOX pregame shows this year.
Free agent right-hander Ervin Santana picked up a minor league deal with the White Sox, according to various reports Friday. Per Bruce Levine of 670thescore.com, Santana will make $4.33 million if he manages to crack the major-league roster this spring. Any official confirmation from the team is still dependent on the results of a physical.
The veteran righty hasn’t seen any action in MLB for some time. He was laid low by prolonged discomfort in his right middle finger last spring, and underwent a capsular release/debridement procedure that kept him off the mound for all but 24 2/3 innings of his 2018 campaign with the Twins. When healthy, however, he’s been as durable and productive as they come. Santana earned his second career All-Star distinction in 2017 and pitched to a 16-8 record in 33 starts with three shutouts, a 3.28 ERA, 2.6 BB/9, 7.1 SO/9, and 2.9 fWAR through 211 1/3 innings.
Barring further complications with his pitching hand, the 36-year-old should be a stabilizing force for the White Sox’ rotation in 2019 — assuming he can beat out southpaw Manny Bañuelos and right-handers Jordan Stephens and Dylan Covey for a back-end role, that is. According to FanGraphs, the club’s starters ranked worst in the league in 2018 with a collective 5.07 ERA, 5.18 FIP, and 3.1 fWAR.