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Reading Room: Ozzie's aftermath, Buehrle's afterglow

Well, the White Sox survived without Ozzie Guillen. In fact, the first game of the Post-Ozzie Era turned out to be a rather enjoyable affair, even though Mark Buehrle had more to do with it than anything.

Given that we're a full day removed from the drama -- and I'm exhausted from yesterday morning's workload -- I figured I'd step back and see what other people are saying about the events that have transpired over the last 36 hours.

About Ozzie

Kenny Williams sits down for a lengthy interview with Chicago Tribune Live's David Kaplan. It's worth watching, but the most significant takeaway -- Williams said he offered to step down and allow the Rick Hahn transition we've been talking about, and he says that he'll be around the next couple of years as the Sox try to stick to a plan. So it seems like Williams' job won't be on the line next year if 2012 goes as poorly as 2011 ... although it certainly won't help.


Cooper sounds like a guy who's trying to strike a balance between expressing happiness about his current position -- he'll be the pitching coach for the next four years -- while not talking himself out of a managing career if the Sox wanted to give it a shot. Brett Ballantini is in his corner, although he realizes Cooper is a very dark horse, mainly because Cooper's pitchers think he's cut out for the job.

Ballantini also gave some back-of-napkin evaluations to other names, and this part was my favorite:

Buddy Bell: For whatever reason, the former manager and current White Sox farm director was immediately bandied as a possible replacement despite the fact that he told South Side Sox this May he absolutely would not return to managing. explained why Guillen's "Hello, Florida!" blog post went up for five minutes -- an employee "hit the wrong buttton." It would've been a great way to ask Williams about potential tampering during Monday's awkward press conference, because Williams says it's one he wouldn't have wanted to try answering.

Jeff Passan and Buster Olney both are guided by insiders to the same conclusion -- Guillen and Jeffrey Loria will find a long-term relationship incredibly awkward, so the honeymoon period better be hot.

Mark Gonzales offers his postmortem on the split, with a unique item that should surprise absolutely nobody:

Guillen also didn't care for sabermetrics, and many of the Sox's number crunchers avoided the dugout during pregame batting practice, which used to be their hangout in previous years.

Also to nobody's surprise, Joe Cowley continues to pin nearly all the blame on Williams, saying that he changed fundamentally while Guillen didn't, of course. On an amusing note, he somehow ended up touting Carl Everett's virtues again, which furthers my theory that he has a script that constructs these columns for him.

James offers his perspective on the end of the Guillen Era, while J.J. asks the classic Chicago question: Where do we go from here?

About Buehrle

Everybody in the organization loves Buehrle, as they should.

David Haugh thinks it's unlikely that Mark Buehrle will return to the White Sox next year, citing the obvious payroll crunch Williams faces.

J.J. goes one step further, weighing the pros and cons and determining that Buehrle made his last start of his White Sox career on Tuesday.

I still maintain my stance from mid-July -- that Buehrle's contract year has received so little attention, that it almost seems like there's an underlying assumption that both parties are amenable to extending their relationship. Given that Jerry Reinsdorf, and not Williams, made sure that Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski were kept in the fold, I can't imagine that he'd let Buehrle go. Especially since Buehrle probably can be signed for fewer than four years, which Reinsdorf prefers when it comes to pitchers.

Or maybe I just hope that's the case. I'll gladly admit that Buehrle might be the last Sox player who I would be incapable of evaluating completely objectively.