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As the Sox turn: Guillen takes shots at Jenks

March 2, 2011

By S.C. Zuba
Sports Columnist

If you’re a White Sox fan, you know who Bobby Jenks is.

You know how important Jenks was to the White Sox in their 2005 World Series championship. You know Jenks was standing on the mound in Houston when the White Sox clinched the title. You know what he meant to that team. You know he had back-to-back 40 save seasons in 2006 and 2007.

But, apparently, there were a few things about Jenks—who signed with the Boston Red Sox during the offseason—we didn’t know. Well, that is according to White Sox Manager Ozzie Guillen.

In Guillen’s latest tirade, he fired at Jenks, who has been going back-and-forth with Guillen’s middle son, Oney.

Oh, by the way, can someone tell Oney to just stay out of the way?

Regardless, here’s how Guillen feels about his former closer:

“We don’t miss him,” Guillen said. “You ask 30 guys in there. By the way, I was asking for his phone number to talk to him about it, and nobody had his phone number. None of his (former) teammates had his phone number. You can tell what happened.”

It gets worse…

“Too bad that all the stuff between me and Kenny [Williams] interrupted his career because he did a lot of bad things last year,” Guillen said. “We lied for him. We protected him. I’m the first manager (ever) to give a guy a week off to take care of his kids when his father-in-law was sick.”

As a fan, this information is troubling. As a rational person, this information is embarrassing. Don’t get me wrong, I respect Guillen’s right to have an opinion about a former player. I get that. But when you make the private business of an organization public in such a way to embarrass a player, I have a real problem with that.

I don’t know what Jenks did while he was in the White Sox clubhouse. I can’t know that—no one can. That is between Bobby Jenks and the Chicago White Sox. No one else.

There is a right and a wrong way to handle everything, a public and a private way. Usually, Guillen chooses to use the public way and airs out all of the White Sox’s dirty laundry for all to see.

This type of dissension is in every Major League Baseball clubhouse. I can guarantee it. Not everyone gets along. The same guys you see chest-bumping at home plate are the same guys fighting in the locker room. But when that type of dissension is made public, there is a problem.

It turns your organization from a baseball team into a soap opera. It’s embarrassing.

I respect Guillen as a manager, but this needs to stop. Like Kenny Williams always says, keep the business of the Chicago White Sox within the Chicago White Sox.

Share your thoughts with S.C. Zuba via e-mail at samuelczuba@gmail.com.

From the March 2-8, 2011, issue

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