Ozzie Guillen Needs More Time

Guillen's second night broadcasting the World Series ends without incident, almost

By Eamonn Brennan
|  Friday, Oct 30, 2009  |  Updated 7:56 AM CDT
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Ozzie Guillen has been on a short leash.

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After two nights of Ozzie Guillen at the World Series, we have one thing to say to his Fox producers: Give this man a bigger microphone.

You can tell it's there, just under the surface, waiting. Goofy Ozzie wants to break free. To spread his rhetorical wings, as it were. The craziness is just on the tip of his tongue -- it just needs time to breathe.

But Ozzie's pre- and postgame segments are far too short and regimented. They're barely 20 minutes each, and that includes little video segments and packages and analysis from Guillen's colleagues, including former Cub Mark Grace. By the time Ozzie gets to drop knowledge, he's usually in and out in, what, 15 seconds?

This is not enough time. Over and over again, Guillen has proved that he's at his best when he's allowed to ramble on and on. The comments come slow at first, but they build, and when you're lucky, they reach that special brand of crazy that makes us love Ozzie so dearly. In Fox's sterile television world, Guillen has no time to build this froth. Which, frankly, is a shame.

Last night's Guillen performance did contain at least one moment of interest: When Fox cutaway from pregame performer Jay-Z, Guillen was practically bubbly. When asked about his enthusiasm, Ozzie said Jay-Z was one of his son's favorite artists and that that this was his (Ozzie's) first time seeing him live. "He sounds amazing, really great," Ozzie said. And then, after a few platitudes about Pedro Martinez, and a little talk about how Guillen couldn't get out of his hotel in New York without taking crap about his Phillies prediction, the interesting stuff was pretty much over.

Ideally, Guillen would have another three hours to talk. Hey, that's an idea! Let's replace Tim McCarver, and grant Ozzie the freedom to really let the pipes flow. There is literally nothing wrong with this idea.

Eamonn Brennan is a Chicago-based writer, editor and blogger. He is the editor of Yahoo! Sports's college basketball blog The Dagger and a contributor to Inside The Hall. Follow him at his personal site, eamonnbrennan.com, or on Twitter.

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