Results tagged ‘ Harold Baines ’

Your ?’s, answered by Venezuela’s John Travolta

Before I answer some of your questions this week. … I know I told you in
my last post I had the opportunity to meet
The Great Muhammad Ali this week
when he came to our clubhouse. I
just wanted to share a picture with you all. It was definitely a great experience
and something I won’t soon forget! 

Ozzie.jpg

Now to your questions … 

Q: I love your site and the Q&A! I am so glad you want to be
accessible to the fans. My question is: Going to U.S. Cellular is so much fun,
not only watching the Sox play, but also because they do a great job of
entertaining the fans between innings. Do you or the players in the dugout ever
watch the “Kiss Cam” or the dance contest or any of those moments on the big
screen?
– Lisa (Arlington Heights, Ill.)

A: Thank you, glad you like the site. Of course I notice all that stuff, and
it is very entertaining.  The only
difference between me and the fans is I can’t eat or drink during the game and
you guys can’t make moves. Besides
that, we are pretty much the same people.

Q: Ozzie, as a big fan of “Dancing with the Stars,” I would love to see
you on the show. I think you would be a hit, plus you would get to dance with a
beautiful dancer. My money would be on you, Oz! Would you ever consider
it?
– Eric (Crown Point, Ind.)

A: Yes, I would, but I don’t think I can be wearing those tight outfits
they have on there. I’m a very
good dancer. I’m the John Travolta of Venezuela (haha).  If I was one of the “Jersey Shore” guys
and I had their stomach, then hell yeah I would do it.

Q: Ozzie, what type of music do you like to dance to? Are you a good
dancer?
— Manny (Chicago)

A: I am a good dancer, but I only like to dance with my wife
because we’re good at it. I like
Salsa and some Merengue — old-school Merengue, that is.

Q: Hey, Ozzie, love you! Who would you have liked to play with the most
when you were still playing? Who would you most like to manage past or present?
Stay in Chicago forever!
– Mike (Wauconda, Ill.)

A: Thank you. The player I
always wanted to play next to was Roberto Alomar, and I did that and also got to
manage him.

Q: Your reading glasses are awesome. What brand are they, and where did
you get them?
– Eric (Geneva, Ill.)

A: Clic Reading Glasses. I get them online in as many colors
as I can find. Try them, for sure
they are awesome.

Q: Can you explain a little on how your relationship is with other
managers and umpires? Do you have friends before and after the games that you
can go grab dinner with when on the road?
– DJ (Antioch, Ill.)

A: I have respect for all the managers. I am friendly with a couple guys like Ronnie Washington,
Bruce Bochy, Dusty Baker, and Gardy (Ron Gardenhire). I get along great with so many of them, but have dinner … not
really. I have dinner with my
family or Harold Baines pretty much. As for the umpires, we are not allowed to eat with them.

Q: Have you ever argued with a player before?  And how do you maintain harmony in the clubhouse? – Miguel
(Maracay, Venezuela)

A: Yes, I have argued with my players before. It’s part of the game, and
I just hope they can see my point of view. Thank God my players are always professional. And harmony is
created by winning.

Q: Why No. 13? When I was in Legion ball, I was 13, too. – Brian
(Minneapolis, Minn.)

A: David Concepcion was my favorite player as a child.

Keep the questions coming. We are getting closer and closer to Opening
Day, and I hope you all are getting as excited as I am!

– Ozzie 

Q&A: On mafia movies, pranks, Danks & dogs

Well, real Spring Training has started and the
games are underway finally! Took some
more time to look over all the questions you have been submitting and picked
some out to answer.  Make sure you check
out the album I posted on my site from the first week of camp. 

On to your questions …

Q: I loved the picture in the (Chicago) Sun-Times the other week of you as “The OzFather.” What do you think of that
nickname? Also, what is your favorite mafia movie? Go Sox!
– Chris M. (Villa
Park, Ill.)

A: I
think that is a great nickname and I love that movie (“The Godfather”). But “Casino” is by far my favorite movie
because of Sharon Stone. Wow!

Q: How would you compare yourself (when you were
playing baseball) with Pete Rose as a ballplayer?
– Barb R. (Goodyear, Ariz.)

A:  We
were both hard-nosed players, and we played the game with a lot of heart and
balls. His hustle paid off a little more
than mine did, though.

Q: I’m excited about this upcoming year for a
lot of reasons, but I think I’m most excited about seeing John Danks take the next
step and become this team’s ace. What do you see as his ceiling? Cy Young one
day, Top 10 AL pitcher? I would be interested in knowing. Thanks, Ozzie, and
good luck this year. It’s been too long since 2005.
— Eddie M. (Chicago)

A: I
don’t think Danks is in the Top 10 yet, but he has the potential to win the Cy
Young one day. He has the stuff and the
drive to make it.

Q: Hey, Ozzie, I hear a lot of people in the
organization say that Frank Thomas is the greatest hitter in White Sox history. I would argue. I would say “Shoeless” Joe Jackson without a doubt. What is your
take?
– Keith W. (Bradenton, Fla.)

A: I
never saw “Shoeless” Joe play. Did you? Frank is the best hitter I have ever seen, with all due respect to Tony
Gwynn
and Wade Boggs.

Q: I’m a big Carlton Fisk fan. How would he be
as a pitching coach or manager? (Not for the White Sox, of course, since they are
set at these positions for the next 20 years — haha)
Will O. (Saunemin, Ill.)

A: 
Never. Pudge doesn’t have the patience or the passion to deal with
baseball now. He is a great man and a
great baseball man, but I don’t see him as a coach.

Q: Hi, Ozzie. Lucky you, having a English
bulldog — they are great dogs! I have had two and they are exceptional. One day
I’ll have another. What is your dog’s name and how old? You should post a
picture of it on your site. Have a good Spring Training.
– Steve L. (Downers
Grove, Ill.)

A: My English Bulldog’s name is “DH.” He is 7
years old and named after Harold Baines.

Thumbnail image for Ozzie dog.JPG

Q: Hey, Ozzie, do you follow soccer? And if so,
who is your favorite team?
— Jared D. (Austin, Texas)

A: Yes, Real Madrid. I don’t like Barcelona because Gerard Pique
is with Shakira (haha).

Q: What’s up, Ozzie? I was just wondering, who
is the best prankster on the team? Who is the easiest person to prank? Thanks! I love the White Sox!
– Danielle G. (Sycamore, Ill.)

A:  Hey,
Danielle. Ramon Castro is the best prankster on the team, and easiest to prank
is by far third-base coach Jeff Cox. Poor guy!

Q: Hi, Ozzie — the pride of Venezuela and the Tiburones. … Ozzie, is there a place to eat Venezuelan food in Chicago? Have you seen Greivis Vasquez play, and do you know him personally? Greetings from Guatemala. – Maxwell R. (Caracas, Venezuela)

A: I know there’s an Aripo’s, which is supposedly good. Regarding Greivis, I do know him and he’s a super nice guy. I’m very proud of him.

Thank you for all the support you have shown for the website. I hope everyone continues to enjoy!

– Ozzie

Sparky, the World Series and the offseason

CHICAGO — What’s up, everyone?I finally made my way back to Chicago and
thought I’d share some things with you all. Man do I love this city,
even though I’m freezing my butt off!

Unfortunately, yesterday the baseball community lost a true legend. Sparky Anderson
was a great man and will truly be missed. I was lucky enough to watch
Sparky manage my favorite teams and player of all-time. Growing up in
Venezuela, the only games I was able to watch were those of the
Cincinnati Reds teams of the ’70s (especially the ’75 and ’76 teams) and
my favorite player, Dave Concepcion. I was also fortunate enough
to play against him when he was in Detroit and would be blessed one day
to have as many rings as he does. A lot of people have been asking me
if I have any Sparky stories, so here’s something I remember — even
though it might be hard for some of you to believe it. Sparky Anderson
intentionally walked me twice in my career to pitch to Sammy Sosa.
Yes, the same Sammy Sosa who hit over 600 home runs — although back
then he still had his Jheri curl and was a little darker (hahaha). Sparky was a great baseball man and will be missed.

I want to congratulate the San Francisco Giants, especially Aaron Rowand, Juan Uribe and Bruce Bochy.
My experience at FOX was awesome, and I can’t thank everyone enough.
But seeing those guys celebrate is what makes me excited to come to
work. I hope I can do it again some time soon. I love this game so much,
I want to be around it whenever I can. Both the front offices of the
Giants and Rangers need to be applauded. I got to the World Series in
’99 with the Braves and know what it feels like to lose. It takes a lot
to get there, and those guys should be proud. I watched a little of the
parade in San Francisco and it was great. those guys won because they’re
carefree spirits. They play the baseball I like to play.

Now that I’m back in Chicago, I plan on seeing a couple of Bulls games like I did last night. (Thanks to all the fans who came up and said hi.) I live close  to the United Center and enjoy supporting the young kids they have, like Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose. Plus, I have always been a fan of basketball.

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for IMG00340-20101104-2009.jpg

I
also want to go see a Bears game, but I’m not sure it will be here in
Chicago. Us Latinos will freeze out there in this weather. I am planning
on heading down to Miami to see them play the Dolphins. It will be a
lot warmer, but don’t worry, I will be rooting for the Bears. When I’m
in Miami, I enjoy golfing a lot and watching my youngest son, Ozney,
play at his Junior College. I think I’m going to crash at his place and
make him cook for me or something (hahaha). I have a lot of good friends who live in Miami in the offseason. I play golf with Joey Cora a lot and get to see Freddy Garcia
and his kids, who are a part of my family. Even though we try to relax,
we always end up talking about baseball. we Guillens live baseball
24/7, and I even named my dog “DH” after my good friend Harold Baines.   

I hope you all got a chance to check out the Jimmy Kimmel
joke about me. If not, you can look at my previous post. It’s very funny
stuff. I read all your questions and comments, and I love it, so please
ask me anything. Don’t be scared (haha). Maybe you guys can
teach me something. It never hurts to listen to advice. Now it’s time to
go relax this offseason with a little music, the beach, and of course
baseball because the chaos never stops!

Talk to you guys soon, very soon.

Ozzie  

Q&A: The DH, Omar, Big Red Machine, Venezuela

ARLINGTON — I promised to answer as many questions as possible. We’ve got some good ones on here already. Keep them coming!!

Q: Do you think Omar Vizquel has a chance to be a good manager for a baseball club?
A: Omar, I think, will be good at anything he does because he is a professional and very respectful. He knows the game, and if he wanted to be a manager, I would support him. 
Q: What is it like going from player to manager? 
A: Being a player was easier for me because I would only worry about myself all the time and do the best I could. When you’re a manager, you have to deal, every day, with 30 players and a whole staff. That’s what makes my hair gray (haha). 
Q: Who was your favorite teammate? 
A: I had a lot of great teammates, but my two favorite were Harold Baines and Joey Cora
Q: As an American visiting Venezuela, what are the coolest things to do/see? 
A: You have to visit Los Roques, Canaima, the Tepuis, Pico Bolivar and Merida. Catch a winter-ball game — Caracas vs. Magallanes is very good. 
Q: If you were commissioner of baseball, what are some of the things you’d change? 
A: I would make both leagues use the DH one year and no DH the next year so there is no more complaining about it. 
Q: As a manager, what is your favorite “road trip” city and why? 
A: My favorite cities are Seattle because of the food and San Francisco because it reminds me a little of Caracas, where I grew up. 
Q: If you could start your career in baseball all over again, what would you do differently? 
I wouldn’t change anything because I think things have gone very well, and if I’ve made some mistakes, those things happen for a reason. 
Q: In comparison to when you first started playing in the big leagues, do you believe racism is still a factor with new Latin ballplayers? 
A: First and foremost, there’s always going to be racism, not just in baseball but in the entire world. But now it is much easier, and the conditions are better in the Minor and Major Leagues. When I started, there were very few of us Latin ballplayers. But now, there are many Latins in the game. But I also speak English now — not very well, but I speak it. 
Q: What’s up with the fact that the only [critical member] of The Big Red Machine (I understand why Pete Rose isn’t in) who hasn’t been enshrined in the Hall of Fame is David Concepcion? 
David has been my favorite ballplayer since I was growing up, which is why I wear No. 13 in his honor. I believe the reason he hasn’t gotten in is because the writers who vote for the Hall of Fame think David wasn’t any better than many other ballplayers. But that’s solely their opinion. 
Q: Did you want “El Toro” [Carlos] Zambrano on your team?
A: “El Toro” is my friend and a very good pitcher. Like everybody, though, he just made a mistake. But they gave him another chance, and I think it’s going to go well for him in Chicago — just not with the White Sox. I wish him the best. 
Q: Would you consider being a civil rights spokesman after your career in baseball? 
I love politics, and I read a lot about it. Like you all know, I have opinions about everything, but at the same time, I stay on baseball and on television. Me, politics? I doubt it. But you never know (haha). 
Ozzie 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 40 other followers