Lack of quality innings from the starters, and poor execution (failure to move runners over, lack of production with runners in scoring position) by the offense. The players are handling themselves very well. They know they're to blame and make no excuses.
Do you think giving up a great young arm like LaMura for Sandy Alomar Jr who's near retirement was a wise move? I think this was a terrible move, even worse than what they did to bring in Riske, which was a bad move then. -- Jay Choi, Gleview
With the white sox getting a 40-year-old alomar, when does Ozzie become the player/manager? I actually remember last year when dye had to play 2b due to injuries. Was there any talk of Ozzie taking that spot for a game? -- Doug Marschke, San Francisco
A couple things on Widger: He would make a great coach some day. Yes, his performance in Detroit was bad. To steal an old line from Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune, Chris looked like Robert DiNiro in "Bang the Drum Slowly." But in regards to preparation, wasn't it Widger who chucked Freddy Garcia's game plan after the first inning at Cincinnati that enabled Freddy to shut down the Reds?
The SF Giants were very high on Torrealba after the 2003 season until they suddenly got interested in a catcher named A.J. Pierzynski.
I wouldn't get too torn up about the loss of LaMura. I'm told by a scout that the Sox were wise to trade him while his stock was high. Alomar is a perfect fit at this time.
Dye played shortstop, not second, in that game at Oakland in 2005. Ozzie is wise enough to know his playing days are over.
Mark, Every time I see Javier Vasquez on a broadcasted game the commentary eludes to the same problem(s). Mostly they talk about his inability to get on top of the breaking ball - especially later in the game and with men on. Do you see a time when Brandon McCarthy (provided he's still on the roster and not traded) will take Vasquez' spot in the starting rotation, and Ozzie using Javier in long relief? At least then Vasquez can give us 3-4 solid innings before blowing up in the 6th. -- Al B., Lorton, Va.
It's too late for McCarthy to move into the rotation, where he can build up enough endurance to be a starter. As for Vazquez, if the Sox happen to make the playoffs, it's a virtual no-brainer that Vazquez goes to the bullpen. With the ensuing off-days, I don't see a six-man rotation.
I am now officially annoyed at / worried about Ozzie Guillen. It's one thing to berate an unknown rookie (Sean Tracey), but to go after your hottest pitcher (Jon Garland) in the middle of a shutout is INSANE. We all want to love Ozzie, but he makes it so hard. What are the chances he doesn't make it through this or next season as manager? -- Hank the Tank, Davis, Ca.
Just wondering, what is the Sox's record since the dressing down of Ozzie for his comments about Sun-Times columnist Jay Mariotti? Any relevance? -- Tony, Scottsdale, Ariz.
Sean Tracey responded well since being demoted, and Ozzie apologized to Garland after the dugout incident. Jon knows that Ozzie was in Garland's corner when times were tough for him, and Tracey came back with a great attitude.
The Sox are 15-17 since Ozzie made the insensitive remark to the columnist.
Please name five minor league pitchers the Sox have that can be major leaguers in the next 4 years? Or will Williams trade them all first? -- Dave Loucks, Rockford
Here's a guess: Sean Tracey, Lance Broadway, Charlie Haeger, Wes Whisler and Kyle McCulloch. Don't rule out Matthew Long, Clayton Richard and Boone Logan.
After the MacDougal trade, I read that a couple of pundits have exclaimed that the White Sox have paid dearly for this trade by getting rid of Lumsden. My question is if he is so good, why isn't he on the major league roster? I look at all of the "rookie pitchers" in the AL Central that have made an impact on Detroit's and Minnesota's seasons and think, why don't the Sox bring one of their hot-shots from the minors to fill the gap in stead of trading them? I don't buy this seasoning them in the minors excuse for ten years. What are your thoughts on this? -- Chuck Dzielawa, Allentown, Pa.
Lumsden was a 2004 draft pick who missed all of 2005 with reconstructive elbow surgery. Daniel Cortes was a 2005 pick out of high school who would have finished his freshman year at San Diego State had he not signed with the Sox. With the exception of Tracey, I don't think there's a pitching prospect who is ready now to help on the major league level. The last thing you want to do is rush a prospect and stunt his development.