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Weekend Notes

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I picked the right night to almost completely miss a Sox game. I was at a BBQ most of the day on Saturday, and the only time I was able to see any of the game was while I was eating dinner. The only inning I saw was the 6th(?) when the Sox scored. -- They even looked bad doing that.

Most of us from the BBQ crawled out of bed just in time to get to the game today. What a tortuous affair. I've had dental work done that was less painful than that game. At least the beer was cold, and the company was friendly.

Good News

  • The best thing I can say about the series is that barring a miracle second half by Oakland, which given their history isn't out of the question, we won't have to face them again this season.
  • Kevin Walker was optioned to AAA following the game.
  • When the Sox take the field again on Thursday, they should have three familiar faces greeting them from the DL trips. Ross Gload, Orlando Hernandez, and Damaso Marte should all be ready to go on Thursday. El Duque threw 4 innings in Charlotte today, and is scheduled to start on the 18 against Detroit.
  • Willie Harris should be in Charlotte freeing up Ross Gload's roster spot.
  • Bobby Jenks will probably be in Charlotte, freeing up the final roster spot.
  • Mark Buehrle should be named the All-Star starter later today.
  • It's the All-Star break. We have a 9 game lead, the best record in baseball, and we should open the second half completely healthy with almost exactly the same team that we had on opening day. -- The only difference should be swapping Willie Harris for Frank Thomas, a substantial upgrade.
Bad News
  • Oakland did everything in their power to give that final game to the Sox. That we couldn't find a way to keep from giving it back tells you just how bad we played.
  • In addition to having absolutely no control, Neal Cotts was down a few MPH on the radar gun. I'm no pitching coach, but I suspect it was just a mechanical issue. If it's worse, we're really in trouble, with no lefty who's been able to consistently get anyone out.
  • Timo Perez, despite all of his shortcomings, has never had as bad of a series as Willie Harris did this weekend. Couple that with Timo's 'clutch' hit in the ninth and 3-4 performace on Friday, and the writing is on the wall. Timo is not going anywhere anytime soon.
  • Oakland has provided a blue print to every team out there on 'how to beat the White Sox.' -- It's pretty simple really. -- Work the count - Be patient - Put the ball in play - Throw strikes - Like I said, it sounds easy, but there's not many teams who can do all of those things consistently. Oakland can.
Observations
  • Last season, all I remember of Bobby Crosby was that he had a good glove. -- Though I seem to recall him making a few gaffes against us. -- This season, he looks like a completely different player at the plate. I have no idea how to get that guy out. He has the ability to look like he can't cover a certain part of the plate, then take a pitch located exactly in that spot and somehow fight it off for a hit. I don't like that guy.
  • DJ Johnson reminded me of a Jason Giambi over at 1B. He was really poor at receiving the ball. A number of routine plays were made more difficult because awkward catching style. There were also a couple of close plays that went the Sox way thanks to DJ muffing the ball, or catching it too close to his body.
  • On that same subject, I don't remember if I've touched on Paul Konerko's defense this year. -- He's had his best year in the field since coming to the southside. He's displayed more range than I can ever remember, is one of the best in baseball at turning a DP, and is quietly very good at picking tough throws at first base. -- Nice 5 hit day on Sunday too.
  • Aaron Rowand has been playing a few steps farther in this season, and it cost him on Sunday. He wasn't able to get to a ball in the 7th, that resulted in an extra run for the A's. -- On the season, however, his positioning has helped his defense. He's made some plays in front of him that would have been hits in the past, and for the most part he's been able to get back to catch everything over his head. (He's already had more over the shoulder basket catches this season than in his entire career prior to this season)
Tradewinds
  • The Sox were connected to the name Zach Day over the weekend. I thought we should inquire about him earlier this season when he was struggling, so I was glad to see our name attached to him.
  • Day would probably be spun for another, more marquee, pitcher if we were to acquire him.
  • Kip Wells -- He's going to be on the market. I say we sign Todd Ritchie and trade him back.
  • Tony Graffanino -- Just bringing this name up because I feel we need another infielder. I just wish he was left-handed.
  • I know we're going to lose some top prospects in the next three weeks, so I just want to say this: KW, Don't trade Chris Young!
For those of you who actually watched Saturday's game, can you give me a recap? How bad was Jenks? Is it time to replace Ozuna as a back-up 3B? Any other observations?