Results tagged ‘ Spring Training ’

It’s crunch time here in Arizona!

Well … lets just say we have been a little busy over here in
Arizona. It’s coming down to the
end of Spring Training, and we as an organization have to make decisions based
on what we believe will give us the best chance to win. I want to say congrats to B-MO (Brent
Morel
) for making the team. I
think this kid will have a good career in the big leagues, and hopefully he
helps us like I think he can.

Everyone seems ready to go; we just need to get everyone
healthy and stay with it all the way to Cleveland. Some final roster choices will be made soon, and I will keep
you all posted. Yesterday, we had
one of our Cubs-Sox games and I got to see my good buddy Rick Sutcliffe before
the game. Always great to see him,
but I have to be honest, whenever we play the Cubs anywhere it’s always a big
pain in the butt. People make it
such a big deal and there is always so much stuff going on!

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Tomorrow I will be doing an interview with Esquire
Magazine. I’m very excited about
it. Very good magazine, and I enjoy the tough questions! Also, be on the lookout for an ESPN E:60 episode I
did down here in Arizona. I will
keep you up to date on when it airs. Should be very cool.

So that’s just a heads-up on what’s been going on down here
before we go to Cleveland, and in a way I will be with you guys in Chicago on
Opening Day, April 1. My Foundation is holding a viewing party for Opening Day at Public House
in downtown Chicago. I’m very
excited because this is the first of these kind of events we have ever
done. We will be doing a charity
raffle with a ton of great prizes, like signed baseball bats from Adam Dunn,
Alex Rios, A.J. Pierzynski and a bunch of other great prizes. The best part is 100 percent of the raffle
donations go straight into the Chicago Community, and I am very proud of
that. So if you are looking for
something to do for Opening Day, I hope you can make it out!

Thank you all for your support. Wake up and get your dreams; anything is possible!

– Ozzie 

Q&A: On The Hall, winning ST games & my team

What’s up, everybody?  It’s
Monday, and we are getting closer and closer to Opening Day!  For everyone that is going to be in
Chicago for Opening Day, please keep your schedule open, as there is going to be
a way for you to come out and enjoy the game with White Sox fans and support The Ozzie Foundation. More details
are coming this week, and I will be sure to post them! 
You guys are always on top of your game when asking me questions; some
more good ones this week. … Enjoy.
Q: Hi, Ozzie, how are you? My question is, are you happy with the rotation you have, and how is Paul Konerko? Take care. – Rolando R. (Santa Barbara, Venezuela)
A: Yes, I am very happy with the rotation because if all our pitchers stay healthy, we have a chance to win a lot of games. Konerko, I imagine, is fine (hahaha). I never worry about him. 
Q: Hey, brother, greetings from Venezuela and lots of well wishes to you and your family. We’d love to have a Venezuelan manager in the Hall of Fame. What do you need to accomplish professionally in the future to be considered eligible? – Angel P. (Bocono, Venezuela)
A: Well, thanks for the well wishes. Look, to enter the Hall of Fame, you have to manage for many years and win as a manager. But at this moment, I don’t worry about that. I’d like to win more championships — that’s the only thing that matters in baseball. 
Q: You played and coached a few Hall of Famers. … What did they do different to
make themselves great?
— Mickey S. (Trabuco Canyon, Cal.)

A: (hahaha) Well, obviously, they had a lot of talent, so that
helped! They also worked very
hard, but the one thing I will tell you about all the great players is they
study the game within the game. They don’t just go out there and play.

Q: Hey, Ozzie, I love your website and the initiative to create it so that we are more in touch with you. How difficult is it for you to build your roster when you have so much talent in Spring Training, and do you have to send some of it to the Minors? – Teodoro M. (Caracas, Venezuela)

A: Thanks; the idea behind the website was to be more connected to the fans. Building the roster isn’t that difficult because the majority of the time, the ballplayers are in or out based on their play. For me, the thing I like least about my job is sending down players to the Minors because I at one point was one of those, and as an older player, too (haha). 

Q: A pleasure, Mr. Guillen. I’d like your opinion with regards to the next manager of Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic. Who’s capable in our country to be in charge of that? – Marcos (Barquisimeto, Venezuela)

A: Good question, and I wish I had the answers. I don’t think that the reason Venezuela has lost in the last two WBC’s is Luis Sojo‘s fault. The reason has to be that the teams from Asia have a lot of time together and they’ve already been playing the entire year, while the other teams can’t play up to their full potential. I really think there could be a lot of managers who can keep order and that the players would want to play for. 

Q: Hey, Ozzie, cheers from Maracaibo. Let me tell you that I manage the White Sox more than you. Of course, I do it while playing on the Wii. I admire you. Best of luck this season. Are we going to be champions again? (hahahaha) – Alberto B. (Maracaibo, Venezuela)

A: (hahahaha) I’m sure you do a better job than me. Hopefully we’re champions — you on Wii and me in real life. 

Q: Oswaldo, you have been very successful being how you are. I’m surprised you say you’re going to change because if you do, you’ll lose your identity. Will you really change? – Hector M. (El Tocuyo, Venezuela)

A: Well, I’m 47 years old. I don’t think I’m going to change now at this age. I say it in the sense of trying to be more calm because every time they throw me out of a game it costs me money (haha). Lots of money, and my family can benefit from that.

Q: So many kids are playing ball for teams that practice year-round
these days. Is that a good thing, or do you think they need time away so their
bodies can rest and mature without straining the arm all year?
-- Bob C.
(Chicago)

A: Well, I think it’s a good thing and a bad thing. You don’t want your arm to get too
tired, so I agree with that. I also
believe that kids that play year-round have an advantage over kids who don’t, because the only way you get better is by practice. But you never want to blow a kid’s arm out, so there is
probably a balance.

Q: Ozzie, how important is it to win Spring Training games? Do you
focus more on how the pitchers are doing rather than the wins?
– DJ (Antioch,
Ill.)

A: Not important. I focus
on health and how certain players respond in game situations, like a hit and run
for example. That’s pretty much
what I look for.

Q: Best of luck this season, Oswaldo! Tiburones and White Sox forever! My question is: Where do you rank yourself among the best Venezuelan shortstops? With Luis Aparicio, Dave Concepcion, Omar Vizquel, where are you? – Sergio C. (Philadelphia)

A: Well, those players are and were the best, as well as role models to kids, and now I have the honor of serving as manager to one of them. To me, Omar is the one who dominated the position. David was my idol and the prettiest (haha). Luis is the only Hall of Famer and the one with the most girlfriends (hahaha). And me, I’m the one that has the most money (haha) — just joking. I’m honored to say that with all of them I’ve had relationships and friendships that I’ll never forget. 

– Ozzie 

Check out my new album from Saturday night!

I hope everyone’s weekend was good. Mine was great! Had a bunch of people over for the Cotto-Mayorga fight on Saturday night. (We Guillens love our boxing!) I posted a new album from the night on my website. Here is a preview … 
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I told you every album was going to have a picture of me grilling. George Foreman, you better watch out — I’m coming for you! 
– Ozzie 

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! 

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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 

Man, what a crazy week so far …

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Just got back from Tucson this morning after what was an
emotional day yesterday
. I was
very moved and touched by the ceremony we had down there and the game yesterday
for the Green family, to remember Christina Taylor-Green. Everyone knows how much I care about my
family, and to see this kind of tragedy happen to such good people hit me very
hard. It was great to be a part of
the game, and I am so happy I got to meet Christina’s father. To see how he is handling this is
amazing; it shows how strong him and his family are. I wish them nothing but
the best. 

On a better note, I stayed two nights in Tucson with my wife
and it reminded me how much I missed it. It was great seeing people I knew from the past and, yes, I did eat at
Mariscos Chihuahua because the food is just amazing! Does anyone know if there is one around Phoenix? As for the game, it was fun to see the
turnout and all the support from the fans, but the wind was crazy! I heard it wasn’t just in Tucson, but
also in Glendale. Man, I wish I was playing, cuz maybe I would have had a
chance to go deep (haha). When
Omar Vizquel hits a ball off the wall batting left-handed, you know something
isn’t right (hahaha).

When I got back this morning to Glendale, it was great to see
“The Greatest
,” Muhammad Ali, in the clubhouse. I’ve met him before — I think it was in ’96 — but whenever you
get to be around a legend like that, you just want to take it all in and not
ruin it by talking. Just being
around him is an honor. I wish I
would have met Ali back when he really was Ali. Maybe he could have given me
some pointers because we both talk A LOT (hahaha). I respect people that say what’s on their mind like I do,
even if you offend people or say something they don’t want to hear. He did that all the time, and I will
always respect that.

I’m looking forward to going to Scottsdale tomorrow to play
the Giants because Ehire Adrianza plays for them and he is on their 40-man
roster. He is like one of my kids, and I will be very happy seeing him play. His dad and I are best friends and grew up together, so I will always be
rooting for him.

Other than that, I will keep you guys posted on what’s
happening here in a few days. And
oh yeah, I almost forgot, GO BULLS. Yes, we watch the games and Joey (Cora) is a Heat fan, so we are on him
every day. But he did not cry (hahaha). Thank God! Keep your questions coming through the website. I will post
some more answers later this week, but I like reading them all.  

Talk you soon, and go get those dreams!

Ozzie

* Photo above: Dallas Green, brother to Christina-Taylor Green, and father John Green (right) are greeted by manager Ozzie Guillen before a Spring Training game between the White Sox and Diamondbacks at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium on Monday. (Getty Images)

New album is up — check it out!

Hey, everyone! We are getting into the grind of Spring Training now, and I just posted a new album to my website from the last week of Spring Training. There are me and my guys talking like we do every night. And yes … even Charlie Sheen comes up cuz we want to be WINNERS, too. 
Enjoy! 
– Ozzie 

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I have so many lineups running through my head

What’s up, people?! I wanted to write a quick blog to let everyone know how it’s going down
here in Arizona. Now that all the
guys are here, it’s been really awesome. I love my job!  From what I
have seen it really looks like everyone is here ready to work. It’s been awesome just seeing the
positive attitudes everyone has come to camp with.

I have a lot of ideas going through my head and have been
playing around with so many lineups for months now. In reality, I hope I can just stick to one because that means
everyone is healthy and it makes my job a lot easier. Same thing goes for the bullpen and the starting staff. I
really enjoy watching things come together. It has been very good to see Jake Peavy progress forward; I hope
he can get healthy and really help us out this year. 

As for what else I have been doing? If you follow me on Twitter, you know I had a great time watching the NBA All-Star Game festivities Saturday night. I love my man Charles
Barkley
… always entertaining! 

Make sure you keep your questions coming in the “Ask Ozzie!”
part of my website. I love reading
them, and I know a lot of people have been asking about the lineup. This is what spring is for. We will
sort everything out and put the best lineup on the field.

Who is coming to see us in Spring Training this year??

Ozzie 

Joey Cora needs to get his golf swing fixed

Finally in Arizona

Hey, everyone. I’m here, and it is awesome! Wow, I really love Arizona, but only for Spring Training. Went over to the stadium this morning to take care of a couple of things and tomorrow we will be ready to roll!
Went out and golfed at the Wigwam Golf Course today with Joey Cora and my son Oney. We golfed the gold course and found out why nobody likes to play that course — it’s so big and very difficult. Oney won, and yes, he is still talking about it and probably will be for a while. There were a few laughs — if you haven’t already, please check out this video of Joey’s golf swing. (hahaha) My god, I think he needs Hank Haney or someone to help him fix that!
OK, now it’s time to get cooking on the grill! It has been a great first day here in Arizona, and be sure check out the photo gallery on my website for all the pics from today.
– Ozzie

My bags are packed & my golf clubs are waiting!

Today is finally the day! I wanted to write one more quick blog for everyone before I leave for Arizona. My bags are all packed, and my golf clubs are already waiting for me. I’m actually even taking my English bulldog with me this year so he can keep me company because all Joey Cora wants to do is talk about baseball, and I get enough of that at the stadium.
I really hope the fans are as excited about this as I am. I hope you all come out and support this ballclub. It means a lot even for the fans that come out in Glendale and support us and enjoy the sun. For those of you who haven’t had a chance to see us in Glendale, the facility is awesome, and I am sure if you can get away from Chicago for a few days, you will love it.
For me, April 1 can’t get here quick enough. I will be posting new blogs, pictures and videos all through Spring Training, so make sure you keep checking out the website! Remember, dreams come to those who go get them.
– Ozzie 

Another Q&A before I leave to Spring Training

Your questions keep coming in, and I’m doing my best to get to as many as I can! Spring Training is getting closer and closer. My bags are all packed and my golf clubs are already waiting for me. Some fun stuff is going to be happening on my website very soon, so make sure you keep checking back. 
Q: Glad to see you are here for at least one more year. How does going into a season without a solid contract for next year affect you and the players? Keep up the great work! – Dennis B. 
A: Thank you. I think there is more responsibility because it shows me that the front office has a lot of faith in me to run this ballclub. My expectations are high, so let’s hope for the best.
Q: Hey, Ozzie. So glad I could get a hold of you this way. I would love to see Bobby Abreu on your team. What are your thoughts on him? – Rodolfo T. 
A: Bobby has always been one of my favorite players. On top of us having a friendship, to me he’s one of the best natural hitters in baseball. To me it’d be a great honor to be his manager. 
Q: Hey, Ozzie, what’s up? I’m just wondering, what are your thoughts on managing the winter-ball team in Venezuela? – Jesus R. 
A: Of course, but just because I’d like it, not because it’ll happen. Because if it did happen, it would mean I’m not managing in the United States. 
Q: Hey, Oz, what’s up? How do you see the team this year, and who do you think is the key to the team? – Randy E. 
A: I think if the team stays healthy, we have a good chance to win. 
Q: Ozzie: First off, this is about as excited as I’ve been about a Sox team in a long time! Questions is, I really like what I saw out of Dayan Viciedo toward the end of last year, but don’t really see where he fits on this team (especially with Brent Morel the likely candidate at third base heading into 2011). What does Viciedo need to do to find his way into our lineup … soon? – Adam T. 
A: It’s hard for me to say right now because Dayan has moved around a lot. We all know he is one day going to hit in the big leagues, but right now that is a question for other people to answer. 
Q: Hi, Ozzie. I went to the Ozzie Guillen Roast and had the good fortune of taking a picture with you. The suit you had was very sharp. My question is, where do you shop for your clothes? What brand is your favorite? – Manuel T. 
A: Thank you for coming to the Roast. First of all, I am like a girl when it comes to clothes; I love it. The suit I was wearing at the Roast came from my good friend Joe Maya from Joe Maya Clothing in Miami — 777 N.W. 72nd Ave. Go check them out, they are awesome! My favorite brand for jeans is True Religion, and I like Michael Kors shirts of any kind a lot, as well. 
Q: Joey Cora is one of, if not the, best bench coaches in the Majors. Yet he keeps getting passed up for manager positions. Do you think he’s being given a fair shot? – Luke R. 
A: I know Joey is a great baseball man. I have learned a lot from him. I’m very surprised as to why he is not managing because I feel he is ready and has been ready for the job for many years now. 
Q: Ozzie, who was your idol both as a player and as a coach? Who did you look to for tips in both categories? Go White Sox! – Kevin W. 
A: David Concepcion was my idol as a player. As a coach or manager, I would have to say John Vukovich, the longtime third-base coach with the Phillies and Cubs. As a skipper, I have always said I looked up to Jeff Torborg, Bobby Cox and Jack McKeon
Q: Hi, Ozzie. … Thank you for being Venezuelan. … I am proud of you like all Venezuelans should be. Can you tell me what is the level of the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League in comparison with other American leagues? USA, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic … why have the Venezuelan baseball teams failed in the World Baseball Classic? — Kervis P. 
A: I think the Venezuelan league has more support from the fans than any other league. Every stadium is packed. I believe the Venezuelan and Dominican leagues are the most competitive. The reason why the Asian teams win the WBC is because they are more prepared and have been playing together much longer. 
Q: Ozzie, I have been a fan since the mid-’80s. How do you think this year’s lineup would match up to the Sox of the mid-’90s, especially the year of the lockout (’94-’95)? – Adam L. 
A: The ’94 team was a great team, but it’s hard to say how good we would have been because we never finished that season. And this year’s team, I don’t know how good we will be because we haven’t started. (haha)
Q: I’m heading down to Spring Training in the beginning of March. I was wondering, what is your favorite place to have a nice dinner while you’re down there? – Thomas W. 
A: Well, Mastro’s is very good. And I’m a steak guy, so I also like Fleming’s. If you like sushi, you should try out Blue Fish. 
Q: What city you travel to during the season has the best food besides Chicago? – Shawn C. 
A: Hands down, the best food is in Seattle and San Francisco. Boston is also up there.
Q: Hey, Ozzie, do you know what Luis Salazar is doing now? Thanks. – Joe S. 
A: I think Luis is working in the Minor Leagues for someone, but I’m not sure who. 
Q: Ozzie, why don’t you run for mayor in the city of Chicago now that your friend Richard Daley is leaving office? – Aaron G. 
A: Hahahaha, because I’m not that good. I feel like Mayor Daley did a great job, and whoever is the next mayor has a tough job ahead of them.
Q: Is there anywhere online that I could purchase Ozzie Guillen Foundation apparel (hats, T-shirts)? – Ryan V. 
A: This summer, you can get all the Foundation gear and a lot more. I have some surprises for you guys this summer. 
Q: Congrats on the Web page, Ozzie. I’m a huge fan. What do you think about Carlos Subero’s departure from the team? I feel like the team took off cold and he was wrongly accussed. Thoughts? – Luis G. 
A: Personally, I think that once again, when players play bad, they let go of the manager. That’s why it’s very hard to manage in Venezuela. But I think he did a good job with the team. That’s my opinion. 
Q: Mr. Guillen, with Spring Training right around the corner, I wanted to ask — how much more difficult is it to assess players in Arizona (with the thin air) as opposed to Florida? – David B. 
A: It’s a little different, especially for pitchers because you don’t sweat as much and your breaking balls don’t break as much. 
– Ozzie 

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