(Source) The White Sox are off to an 8-14 start and there’s plenty of panic going around the South Side, though starter Jeff Samardzija has a message: Chill.
While serving as an honorary coach at the Special Olympics Chicago’s 47th Anniversary Spring Games Monday, Samardzija addressed the current state of the White Sox and the growing criticism from fans of manager Robin Ventura.
“Robin’s a great leader,” Samardzija said. “You know, Robin is doing everything he can do and it’s only been one month. So let’s just calm down a little bit.”
Gonna give Shark the benefit of the doubt here because this is his first season on the South Side and he’s only 22 games into his White Sox tenure. He hasn’t been around the dumpster fire that has been the Chicago White Sox long at all. He hasn’t seen baserunning gaffe after base running gaffe, error after error, and base-to-base, boring offenses that drive Sox fans insane.
But guess what? I’ve have. Sox fans have. In retrospect, the last few years were supposed to be dedicated solely to shedding payroll, dead weight players like Dunn and Viciedo, and the team wasn’t supposed to be competitive. With rosters composed largely of bad baseball players more or less, the poor baserunning, defense, hitting, and losses were to be expected.
But with the offseason that Hahn had that was supposed to launch the Sox back into contention, all of that shit is still here. So no, Jeff, myself and other Sox fans won’t relax. We;ve been relaxing for 3 or more years. The roster has been completely overhauled, but the same mistakes are being made. And the one constant over the last three years is the manager, Robin Ventura. If the same mistakes are being made year, after year, after year, and by completely different players, what does that tell us as fans? It tells me that the manager isn’t capable of instilling traits into his players that win baseball games. Like, not running into outs at home on balls hit back to the pitcher. Or over throwing cuts and conceding force outs. Or awful clutch hitting. If it hasn’t happened now, I don’t see any reason to expect it to happen at all as long as he’s managing this club. I wish I was wrong, and I hope they do flip a “switch” if they have one, but I truly do not see that happening. And that sucks.
I appreciate him sticking up for his manager. Same with Abreu, Johnson, and others who have publicly said Ventura does a good job. With that said, often times a person’s best just isn’t good enough. Right now, if it were up to Sox fans, Ventura would be gone.
This series against Detroit starting tonight is do or die for him. I truly believe that. If they come out and throw up another dud for 3 games, attendance is gonna plummet, maybe to the point where Reinsdorf or Hahn’s hand is forced. That may be wishful thinking. We’ll see.