An Open Letter to Ozzie Guillen

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Dear Ozzie,

Let me start this letter off by saying that I'm a fan. I don't always agree with the moves you make, or the things you say and do, but for the most part I think you're very good at doing your job. Still, that doesn't mean there isn't one thing you do constantly that could end up costing your team a division title this season.

It nearly did last night.

In the second game of your doubleheader against the Tigers last night, your boys had jumped out to a 7-0 lead so you decided to pull starter John Danks early and go to the bullpen. I have no problem with this, and thought it was a smart move, but shortly afterward you nearly killed your team. After the Tigers had made it 7-3 in the eighth inning, you brought in Octavio Dotel with a four run lead.

I knew right then that you guys were going to blow the lead. How did I know this? Well, Ozzie, that's because every time you bring in Dotel with a comfortable lead, he blows it. Maybe you haven't noticed the 500 previous times it's happened this season, but it has. Sure enough, a few pitches later, Marcus Thames was launching a grand slam into the left field bleachers and the game was tied at seven.

Now luckily for all of us, Jim Leyland was dumb enough to bring in Kyle Farnsworth in a tie game, and he did what Farnsworth does by giving up another grand slam to DeWayne Wise in the bottom half of the inning, and you ended up winning 11-7.

Still, I can't make this point any clearer: Stop bringing in Octavio Dotel when your team has a nice lead. He's not always going to blow the entire lead, but he will let the other team get within a run every single time. Had Farnsworth not bailed you out, bringing in Dotel in that situation could have been what killed the White Sox this season.

Can you imagine the mental state of your team had it blown a seven-run lead as it heads out on a huge ten-game road trip? The entire trip would have been over before it even started, and you'd have been lucky to come home with three wins on it.

Now I'm not saying stop using Dotel all together, because he does serve a purpose. If the Sox are holding on to a one-run lead in the seventh inning, and the other team has the bases loaded with nobody out, that's when you bring in Dotel. He'll strike the next three guys out on nine straight pitches.

If I ever see you bring in Dotel with a four or five run lead again, I will march down to the field and punch you in the face. I mean it.

Thanks for listening,
Tom Fornelli

P.S. Did Brian Anderson kill someone close to you? Let the kid play once in a while, would you? Unlike your other centerfielders, he can actually play the position.

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