Things are about to get a lot more dull on the South Side.
White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen was released from his contract Monday at his own request, allowing him to pursue other opportunities.
Guillen, who played shortstop for the Sox and has managed the team for eight years, has only one year left on his contract and had been very vocal about seeking an extension -- demands that the Sox brass were not willing to meet.
"We certainly cannot thank Ozzie enough for all he has done during his eight seasons as manager of the Chicago White Sox, highlighted by an unforgettable 2005 World Series championship," said White Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf in a statement. "I personally appreciate everything he has done for this organization, our fans and the city of Chicago. We shared the greatest moments together and wish him nothing but future success in baseball and in life."
Guillen had nothing but praise for Reinsdorf and the Sox front office, and took the heat for a disappointing season.
"If anyone in Chicago wants to blame Kenny or Jerry or anybody in the front office people, they're wrong. It's a decision I make," Guillen said at his post-game press conference.
Guillen has had a volatile relationship with Sox general manager Kenny Williams over the past couple of years. Williams praised Guillen during his postgame press conference, and said the team already has its eyes on managerial candidates, but refused to elaborate on "Ozzie's day."
"Because of the warnings, we've been able to dwindle down the list to a few select candidates and should be able to act swiftly," Williams said.
Florida Marlins manager Jack McKeon announced Monday he is retiring, fueling speculation that Guillen would head there, however the Sox will retain rights to get compensation if Guillen manages another team in 2012.
Williams said a deal is already in place with one team -- presumably Florida -- if that's where Guillen decides to go, although he's free to negotiate with anyone.
Several new outlets are reporting that the Sox will receive two minor league players from the Marlins in return for Guillen.
"It's tough to pinpoint exactly where we got off-track, but I think winning cures a lot of that. We are all very competitive around here, and sometimes with that competitive drive, frustration kind of builds and things get awry that way," Williams said.
Guillen had a 678-617 record during his managing career with the Sox, but this season was disappointing, with the highest payroll in team history only generating a 79-82 record.