TUCSON, Ariz. – I dont want to say my Friday morning flight into Tucson was a rocky one, but I sat next a chubby passenger named Hugo Reyes. He told me he liked to be called Hurly. So be it.
It might be awhile before I fly Oceanic Airlines again.
As for the baseball part of it, camp doesnt officially even start until Saturday – when White Sox pitchers and catchers are expected to report – and there was already news flying around the clubhouse, courtesy of manager Ozzie Guillen.
The best of Guillens Day 1 remarks:
Guillen on the change of philosophy for this spring – Obviously, we have a few players that are going to be separated to get more at-bats, but they are also getting at-bats in the A-games. If we have to play somewhere and you need to get work in, well, your butts are going to be on the bus. The only position player I will look at about traveling is Jim Thome. The reason is his health, his back and respect. I think the players will understand our point. Our point is not to win the Cactus League. Our point is to get ready for the season, but just start doing that the first day.
Guillen on returning to the controversial figure he was his first three years at the helm Last year, I said, Im going to back up a bit. I thought the players were like, Oh, there goes Ozzie again. If they get tired of me now, good. Thats the way Im going to handle my stuff.
Guillen on the fact that pitcher Nick Masset is 25 pounds lighter and looks serious about becoming a starter If I see Masset or [Lance] Broadway step it up and do a better job, well, we have to make decisions. Spring training is a tough place to judge players, but you know what? The competition is going to be honest. Everybody is going to be playing on the same field. Just because we mentioned five names [Mark Buehrle, Javier Vazquez, Jose Contreras, John Danks and Gavin Floyd], it doesnt mean were going to go with them.
Guillen on the plans to trade Joe Crede if the third basemans surgically repaired back is healthy I dont talk to [general manager Kenny Williams] about that. Zero, not at all. The only thing I can tell you guys is were going to have the best club out there. If we think we can win with Joe Crede, the trade thing, the contract stuff, thats up to Kenny. In my situation, I have to write the lineup and Im going to put down the best players that I think. Its not an easy situation. I hope Joe is fine. No one knows. You have to ask his agent. The trainers, they dont know. When he shows up here, hopefully hes ready to play.
Guillen on speculation that the Sox could try and acquire second baseman Brian Roberts from Baltimore I have what I have, good or bad. I care less what people think. Thats Kennys department. If he comes up with a different idea the next couple days, well see what happens. If people think were not good good.