Cubs

Word on the Street: Ozzie's Sox 'painful' to watch

Word on the Street: Ozzie's Sox 'painful' to watch

Bears No. 1 draft pick Gabe Carimi throws out the first pitch at the White Sox game Sunday afternoon. (AP)
Sunday, May 1, 2011
CSNChicago.com

Ozzie didn't enjoy watching Sox on TV

While serving the first game of his suspension Friday night, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen admitted he tried watching the game on TV, but had to turn it off.

Guillen told the Chicago Tribune that, "I watched the first few innings, but that was enough. It was painful to watch, as a fan. "On TV, you see everything. They showed the replay a few times and you don't want to see it. At least when you manage, you just see it once. On TV, they always want to run it one more time." (ChicagoTribune.com)Scalabrine does a wicked Thibodeau impression, but...his wife, Kristen, won't let him show it off in public. The veteran Bulls forward knows his head coach extremely well after playing for him for three years in Boston and this year in Chicago. He has showed off a good impression of the head coach at home for his wife and two children before."Tom has these short busts of yells," Scalabrine said. "And he yells at me, but it's not like yelling. That's just how he talks.

"So I came home and my kids were on the couch. And I was like, 'C'mon, get off the couch! Let's go! We're not going to do this now!' I did that for like 10 straight minutes. And my wife was like, 'Yo, you need to relax. You're not at work anymore. You're home. And you're not the coach and the kids aren't your players.' (ChicagoSports.com)Former Bear shot, not seriously hurtFormer Bears defensive back R.W. McQuarters was shot early Saturday as he left a friend's Tulsa residence, but injuries were not life threatening according to police. McQuarters was in his car when he heard several shots and felt himself get shot. The shot went through the driver's window and police do not have a description of the shooter. (TulsaWorld.com)
Ravens still upset with Bears over draft trade fiascoAfter Chicago refused to give up a draft pick to Baltimore to make up for their trade snafu, Ravens head coach John Harbaugh decided it was time to speak up."I can't imagine why they would be so opposed to doing this," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said Saturday. "I thought Steve said it well. You're talking about your reputation. You're talking about how you do business. The McCaskeys are the McCaskeys. They are the NFL. I really think if they were making the decision, I'm pretty sure their fourth-round pick wouldn't be worth the history of their reputation." (NationalFootballPost.com)
White Sox can't be this bad, right?
Following Sunday's loss to the Orioles, Chicago fell to 10-19 having won only three times in their last 18 games. Is the team that many picked to win the A.L. Central division really this bad or just in an awful stretch of baseball right now? (SunTimes.com)

Adbert Alzolay makes some memories on an otherwise forgettable night for the Cubs

Adbert Alzolay makes some memories on an otherwise forgettable night for the Cubs

The Cubs lost an entirely forgettable game on Tuesday night, dropping the second of their four games against the NL East-leading Braves by a score of 3-2. They left four men on base, only managed four hits, ran into two outs, and made one error in a game that was over well in time for a Clark Street nightcap, or three. 

What was memorable about Tuesday night was the performance of Adbert Alzolay, the Cubs’ top pitching prospect who was making his first major league start. The final line: 4.2 innings pitched, one hit, one run, four walks and four strikeouts. It’s certainly not the prettiest line you’ll see in tomorrow’s box scores, but the 24 year old passed the eye test with flying colors. 

“Everything was good - he was outstanding,” Joe Maddon said after the game. “I just think he hit a well there at the end. We just have to get him more used to that. Listen, he’s been injured in the past, he’s coming back - you’ve got to be real sensitive to the number of pitches and workload you put on him, because you can see how good he’s going to be.”

Things got off to an inauspicious start for Alzolay, whose first pitch of the game was crushed 413 feet into the left field bleachers for a leadoff homer, courtesy of Braves’ outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. It would prove to be the only hit and run that Alzolay allowed on the night. 

“It’s just one pitch,” he said. “You have to keep working - the game continues. I was just starting the game, so if you lose your mind in that situation than you’re not going to last a lot of innings.

“Even after the home run, he came right back and said, ‘I’m fine’,” Maddon added. “Then he went up and got three really good hitters out. I liked the mound demeanor, we’ve just got to get him a little further along in regards to being stretched out.”

After coming out flat with his secondary pitches during his 4-inning relief appearance on June 20th, Alzolay flashed better command and execution of both his curveball and changeup. Half of his strikeouts came on the curveball - one to get left fielder Austin Riley in the 2nd and one to get Acuña in the 3rd. After throwing 13 changeups in his debut, Alzolay double that number on Tuesday (27). 

“I’m feeling really confident throwing the pitch in any count,” Alzolay said of his changeup. “Tonight I threw it a couple times when I was behind in the count and I got a good result after that, so I’ll just keep on throwing it.

“For us to get confident at something, you have to practice, you have to execute it, and you have to use it in the game,” said catcher Willson Contreras, who plated both of the Cubs’ two runs with a double in the 4th. “For him to be able to throw the changeup for a strike, and strikeout people, it’s really good - especially at his age.”

Maddon couldn’t answer when Alzolay would make his next start. With Kyle Hendricks eyeing a return around the All-Star break, there would seemingly be a few more opportunities ahead of the rookie. Given what he showed on Tuesday night, it’d be hard to argue against it.

"He can be really good in the big leagues," Contreras said. "He still needs to make adjustments like all of us, but with the confidence he has, the ability he has, and the way he prepares before the games, it's going to take him a long way."

Tim Anderson helped off field with ankle sprain, will be reevaluated Wednesday

Tim Anderson helped off field with ankle sprain, will be reevaluated Wednesday

White Sox fans saw a sight they hoped they'd never see Tuesday night.

Tim Anderson was helped off the field with an ankle injury in the fifth inning of Tuesday night's game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park, hurt while making a play on a ground ball on a wet night in Massachusetts.

The White Sox announced later in the evening that Anderson has a sprained ankle and that X-rays were negative. The team added that Anderson will be reevaluated Wednesday.

Anderson made an on-the-run throw to nab J.D. Martinez at first base, but a play that Anderson has made look fairly routine over the past couple seasons this time included a slip on the rain-soaked infield. The White Sox star shortstop fell to the ground in pain immediately. After having his ankle briefly checked by the trainer, Anderson was helped off the field, into the dugout and into the clubhouse.

The rain poured down on Fenway Park on Tuesday night. The start of the game was delayed a half hour, but the teams played through steady rains throughout, worsening playing conditions, something the White Sox and every team across baseball have had to deal with quite often this season.

The degree of Anderson's ankle sprain is unknown, but the sight of him coming off the field was a nightmarish one for the White Sox and their fans. A sigh of relief came with the team's update, which did not include the words "Achilles" or "tear."

Anderson has emerged as one of the faces of the franchise this season, earning AL Player of the Month honors after a sensational April and earning national attention for flipping his bat after home runs and his mission to make what he calls a "boring" game more fun. He's got a .317/.342/.491 slash line on the season.

Anderson is undoubtedly a core piece for the rebuilding White Sox, who can pen him in as their shortstop of the future as well as the present.

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