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White Sox know what they have to do -- they just can't do it

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Months of pleas from Robin Ventura go unanswered as season slides away

"Can't anybody here play this game?"
"Can't anybody here play this game?"

"We aren’t helping (Danks) defensively, any of the pitchers," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "We have to clean that up, give yourself a chance to come back and score like we did. But any time you’re giving them opportunities, they score two on giving them extra outs and you just can’t do it. The one thing we were really good at last year, we’re failing to do it this year."

-- June 20

"They are hard (to get) anywhere right now, so it doesn't matter where we are at," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "We have to focus on winning games -- it doesn't matter if we're home or in Europe. We've got to win games."

-- June 15

"You keep going," Ventura said. "You can ... sit there and think something bad is going to happen, or you can change it. We have to find a way to change it."

-- June 8

"It can always get worse. You can run off 10 [losses] in a row like this if you aren’t careful,’’ Ventura said. "That’s one of the crazy things about the game. There’s so many games. It’s every day. You have to have the mental discipline to put yesterday behind you and look at today optimistically with some sort of offensive production.

-- June 2

While giving a tip of the cap to the 40-year-old Colon (6-2), who handcuffed his team on five hits in a complete-game performance, Ventura had no defense for his team’s offense.

"It’s one of those where [Axelrod] felt like if he gives up one hit, he’s going to end up losing,’’ Ventura said. " We have to be better offensively. Right now we stink.’’

-- June 1

Unable to hit Jeff Samardzija when the week began, the White Sox were outscored 24-6 in the three games. They will play seven of their next 10 games against the Athletics, who might be baseball's hottest team.

"Any time you have three games like this it's (unsettling)," Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "You have to regroup. We have shown we are capable of playing better than this. (We) have to do it again."

-- May 31

‘‘Anything’s possible,’’ said Ventura , who hasn’t been one to make significant batting-order changes this season and last. ‘‘You just have to keep working at it, and we have to find it within our guys. You have to find it because you aren’t going to get any help anywhere else — unless you have a 40-man roster.’’

-- May 30

"We know we have good pitching," manager Robin Ventura said. " We just have to play good defense to help those guys and give us a chance. As long as they grind offensively, I want those pitchers to go out and not think they have to throw a shutout every night."

-- May 21

"When you see it happen, you don’t want to be the next guy to do it," Ventura said of the rash of errors. "I’ve been through it, too. You have to get to a point where — and it sounds bad — you don’t care about being the next guy, that you just make the play.

-- May 12

‘‘It’s more staying on top of it,’’ Ventura said. ‘‘It’s not acceptable, and they understand that. You work at it and preach [because] you can’t win unless you play good defense.’’

-- May 11

"Hector did a great job just staying with (Harvey)," Ventura said. "But you’re going to have to scratch something together to win, even against guys like that have nights like that. You have to grind it out and get something."

-- May 7

"Keep playing games,’’ manager Robin Ventura said. "It’s that simple. You just play better … and you have to be mentally strong enough to keep playing and grinding it out and doing the right things and all that stuff and that’s the only way you do it. There’s no magic potion. You have to be mentally strong to be able to do it, and we’re going to find it."

-- April 30

Matt Thornton and Jesse Crain did a good job of minimizing the damage after taking over for Jones, but right fielder Alex Rios dropped a Ryan Roberts flyball with the bases loaded and two outs, allowing 2 unearned runs to score.

"It’s just one of those things that’s going to happen and you realize that occasionally," Ventura said. "But if we’re going to get on an extended run of playing well, you have to make those plays."

-- April 28

"It keeps coming,’’ he said of the Sox’ mounting injury list. "You have to find a way to keep going.’

-- April 27

"We have to play defense," Chicago manager Robin Ventura said. "This is a good team we're playing. You just can't give more chances to the other side. For us, pitching and defense is going to be key, and then find a way to score some runs."

-- Opening Day