As for Thome, Guillen said there is no bigger fan of the veteran than him, but life in the American League is changing.
“No one except his wife is a bigger fan of Jim Thome than me,” Guillen said. “I will be grateful and pleased one day to say that I had an opportunity to manage this man, but this game is changing a little bit. It’s easy for manager when you don’t have a true DH. I can move things around, give guys more playing time. That’s the way it’s going to be.
“Fans out there will be looking at this team a little different. They might be saying, ‘Hey, we’re missing something.’ I think we’re going in a different direction, but the right direction. Our team is going to create different things. That’s why things will look weird. People shouldn’t be worried about that. Thome to me is one of the best guys ever to wear the uniform, but DH is changing. Few teams will have a legit DH. Those days are going away.”
Easy for manager? No. It’s easy for the other team’s manager. 2010 is gonna suck. Save us Kenny
BTW, Ozzie will be at ‘Chicago Tribune Live‘ today at 5:30 p.m. E-mail him at CTL@comcastsportsnet.com
UPDATE: More sadness/craziness from Ozzie:
” … (Thome’s departure) gives this ballclub an opportunity to give more people more at-bats and to be flexible in different ways.”
… “To me, it’s easier and we get more production with the team we have now that way,” Guillen said.
… ”Fans, they’re not going to be happy about something,” Guillen said. “Or a question mark as to why we don’t have a big left-handed hitter. We did for a couple years. The ballclub we had in the past didn’t create that many runs.
“We’re going to play different. We’re not going to wait for guys who can hit 30 home runs. I hope not. I hope they don’t come to the mentality that we need pop.” …
“But [the DH by committee] gives this ballclub an opportunity to give people more at-bats and to be flexible in different ways.”We are not a home-run team anymore.”
… “We have that big left-handed bat for a couple of years, and I think the ballclub we have in the past is a club that can’t create runs,” Guillen said. “We still have guys who can hit 30 home runs, but I don’t want them to come with the mentality that we need power.
“Sometime we will be down by one run in the ninth inning and wish we had [Frank] Thomas or Thome, but this is a different type of game. We have the ballclub to play baseball, make the catch and make the plays. We change everything around.
“It’s not to say we will win. But we are going in the right direction. I think this team is almost set.”