June 10th, 2008

White Sox come to town

By now, I’m assuming everyone saw the Dontrelle Willis option to Class A Lakeland. The reason for him going down to A-ball rather than Erie or Toledo, according to Dave Dombrowski, was that they felt it would be a lower-pressure situation down there, with less attention on him than if he were in the other places. Dombrowski also said he felt like at least part of it was mechanical, which seemed evident last night and runs counter to the previous belief that it might’ve been mental.

As for the candidates to take Saturday’s spot in the rotation, Leyland said Toledo right-hander Eddie Bonine was a “strong possibility.” He also said Zach Miner and Casey Fossum were possibilities if they wanted to stick with the current staff. He also said they could go to Double-A for a starter, but looking at the stats, there seems to be no clear candidate there.

Anyway, the lineups …

TIGERS (26-37)

  1. Granderson, CF
  2. Polanco, 2B
  3. Guillen, 3B
  4. Ordonez, RF
  5. Cabrera, 1B
  6. Larish, DH
  7. Renteria, SS
  8. Rodriguez, C
  9. Clevlen, LF

WHITE SOX (37-26)

  1. Orlando Cabrera, SS
  2. A.J. Pierzynski, C
  3. Carlos Quentin, LF
  4. Paul Konerko, 1B
  5. Jim Thome, DH
  6. Jermaine Dye, RF
  7. Nick Swisher, CF
  8. Joe Crede, 3B
  9. Alexei Ramirez, 2B


Credit to Willis: He talked

I’ll probably go through more than a handful of times over the course of a season and point out when someone wasn’t available for comment, or declined to comment, or didn’t make himself available. Rarely do I give the reverse. So especially in this case, as all the criticism is coming down on Dontrelle Willis, I wanted to give him credit. He stayed until after the game and he talked. In fact, he stayed through the rain delay, through all those innings after he was done with one of his worst starts, and then he stayed after the game and talked — to two separate groups of reporters — until every last question had been asked and answered.

I can think of more than one occasion this year where players haven’t stuck around after a loss, or they’ve been short, or they’ve just been a pain. Willis stayed and he talked. He answered every last question. He didn’t pull out any excuses. He didn’t pull out a list of one-word answers to get people away. And he took all the picking apart of one miserable night for him. When you hear people in the media talk about a go-to player, that’s what a go-to player does.