Word on the Street: Ozzie's job in jeopardy?

Word on the Street: Ozzie's job in jeopardy?

Sunday, Jan. 2, 2011
CSNChicago.com

Ozzie's job in jeopardy?

In the past year and a half, the Chicago White Sox have made a flurry of moves to improve their roster--adding Adam Dunn, Jake Peavy, Alex Rios and Edwin Jackson and retaining the services of clubhouse leaders Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski. But, according to the Chicago Tribune's Phil Rogers, it's the move they didn't make that is really saying a lot.

The White Sox have not extended the contract of manager Ozzie Guillen, putting him in a position, as Rogers says, is win or go home. Meaning if the Sox don't win the AL Central next year, at the very least, Ozzie could be just yet another former Chicago manager. (Chicago Tribune)

Bears playoff game set

The NFL playoff schedules are out and the Bears are officially playing Sunday, Jan. 16 at Noon. They will host either Philadelphia, New Orleans or the winner of the St. LouisSeattle game, depending on how next week's slate of games winds up. Since the Atlanta Falcons have locked up the No. 1 seed, they will face the lowest seed remaining in two weeks. (NFL.com)

Toews could return Monday

When Jonathan Toews first went down with injury on Tuesday, everybody feared the worst. The Blackhawks captain was said to miss at least two weeks, but now everything has changed.

CSNChicago.com's Tracey Myers is reporting that Toews may very well play Monday night against the Los Angeles Kings.

He obviously means a lot to us in a lot of ways and plays in a lot of situations, head coach Joel Quenneville said prior to the Blackhawks game against Anaheim. Were excited about the chance of getting him back. Hes very tough, very competitive. (CSNChicago.com)

Two more added to Bulls' potential trade targets

There has been much talk about the Bulls possibly adding some outside help at shooting guard before the NBA trade deadline, but now Chicago is reportedly throwing small forwards in the mix as well.

Dorell Wright, a SF for the Golden State Warriors, and Omri Casspi from the Sacremento Kings both fit the perimeter shooting the Bulls are interested in.

Wright, who is shooting 41 percent from beyond the arc this season, is a talented defender and athlete and should be a better fit for the Bulls than O.J. Mayo or J.R. Smith, who both demand the ball a lot more.

Casspi, on the other hand, is also shooting 40 percent from the floor and is only earning 1.25 million this season. (Chicago Now blog, True Hoop blog)
Forte cracks 1,000 yard mark

Matt Forte, the multi-dimensional running back for the playoff Chicago Bears, cracked the 1,000 yard rushing mark for the second time in his three-year career. Forte needed only 22 yards in the season's final game in Green Bay, which he got on his third carry of the game. (ESPN)

Derek Holland not satisfied despite strong outing in White Sox loss

Derek Holland not satisfied despite strong outing in White Sox loss

Derek Holland turned in one of his best starts of the season on Sunday afternoon. Unfortunately, the White Sox had nothing to show for it after a 5-3 loss to the Oakland Athletics on Sunday afternoon.

In six innings, Holland allowed four hits, one earned run, and two walks while recording six strikeouts. He was charged with his only run in the seventh, when he allowed a single to Yonder Alonso, who came around to score after Holland had been pulled from the game.

Despite his confidence in the bullpen, which has been one of the White Sox biggest strengths this season, Holland would like to see himself go deeper into the games.

“I should be getting into the 7th and not having 110 pitches,” Holland said. “The bullpen's done a great job of picking us up in the seventh, eighth and ninth. The starters, and really pointing more to myself, we need to...I need to go out there and go longer."

Entering Sunday, three of Holland’s last four starts had been the worst outings of the season – allowing 22 earned runs over those four games. Despite the team’s 5-3 loss, Holland felt his outing was a step in the right direction.

“I felt good about everything out there,” Holland said. “(Omar Narvaez) and I were right on the same page. There were just a couple of things that got away from us. Just one of those things. Defense made the plays for us when they needed to, unfortunately we just didn't come out on top."

Manager Rick Renteria also had high praise for the 30-year-old southpaw, who bounced back from one of his shortest outings of the season.

“I thought Holland, hopefully what's not lost is Holland's outing today was really, really good,” Renteria said. “He kept us in the ballgame. They've got some kids that can swing the bat. They were putting things together. All we were trying to do at the end was minimize any damage they could produce. We weren't able to.”

Tough luck for Tommy Kahnle as White Sox blow lead, get swept by A’s

Tough luck for Tommy Kahnle as White Sox blow lead, get swept by A’s

Tommy Kahnle has been one of the White Sox brightest bright spots, but fell victim to some tough luck that could ding on his under-the-radar All-Star bid.

Kahnle allowed the tying and go-ahead runs in the White Sox 5-3 loss to the Oakland Athletics Sunday in front of 28,089 at Guaranteed Rate Field, marking only the sixth time in 31 games the 27-year-old right-hander has allowed a run in 2017.

In the eighth inning, Kahnle allowed a broken bat single to Franklin Barreto, then Ryon Healy reached on a Todd Frazier error. Khris Davis tied the game with a single to left, knocking Kahnle out of the game, and Oakland took the lead when Yonder Alonso blooped a single off David Robertson that plopped into left field out of the reach of Melky Cabrera. Consider the hit probabilities, according to Statcast, of those three hits and the error:

Barreto: 78 percent
Healy: 5 percent
Davis: 62 percent
Alonso: 2 percent

That Kahnle coughed up the lead was surprising given his stealthy success leading a strong back end of the White Sox bullpen this year. The White Sox, prior to Sunday's defeat, were 28-0 when leading after seven innings. 

"Our bullpen's doing a great (job), it really is," manager Rick Renteria said. "I think you can't take away from what they've been doing for us all year long. We've been going to them a lot."

On that improbable Alonso bloop single, Cabrera was shifted more toward center field. 

"He was actually playing a little more to the pull side than he was to the line," Renteria said. "I don't think he was going to be able to get to it, regardless of the effort he might have given us. These guys are all a little fatigued, they're a little tired right now. They're giving you what they've got right now."

Entering Sunday’s game, Kahnle’s 1.2 WAR was sixth-best American League relievers, behind Boston’s Craig Kimbrel (2.2), Houston’s Chris Devenski (1.6), Cleveland’s Andrew Miller (1.6), Los Angeles’ Blake Parker (1.4) and Toronto’s Roberto Osuna (1.3). His 44.8 strikeout percentage is among the five best in baseball along with Kimbrel, New York’s Dellin Betances, Los Angeles’ Kenley Jansen and Milwaukee’s Corey Knebel.

Kahnle has been undoubtedly spectacular this year even with Sunday’s hiccup, though with Garcia seeming likely to be on the American League All-Star roster, Terry Francona wouldn’t have to take him to fill the game’s requirement. That this year’s All-Star Game doesn’t count — it’s the first since 2002 that won’t dictate home-field advantage in the World Series — could alter Francona’s roster construction to reward more starters and closers, and the Cleveland Indians manager would certainly be justified if he wanted to take his own setup guy in Miller.

The White Sox handed Kahnle the lead on Adam Engel’s first career home run (a solo shot in the third) and Jose Abreu’s dash home on a passed ball in the fourth. Starter Derek Holland was solid, allowing one run on four hits with two walks and six strikeouts over six innings. Melky Cabrera added a solo home run in the ninth inning, his eighth of the season.

Adam Rosales and Matt Joyce homered off Robertson and Chris Beck, respectively, in the ninth inning to give the A’s a comfortable ending to their three-game sweep of the White Sox. Beck was hit by a comebacker after allowing that home run and left the game with a bruised left hamstring, and is considered day-to-day.