Could Ozzie Be On His Way Out?

In Episode No. 263 of the Steve Dahl Podcast, Comcast SportsNet Chicago’s Pat Boyle speculates that, based on what he’s hearing, fans of the Chicago White Sox may be in for one more crushing disappointment before the year is out. To wit, manager Ozzie Guillen, whose contract runs through the 2011 season, could be fired.

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“I’m hearing some rumblings that it’s already been done that Ozzie will not be back,” Boyle told long-time Chicago radio personality and now podcasting pioneer Dahl. When questioned about whether the hugely disappointing Manny Ramirez could an underlying cause of the firing, Boyle said:

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I think it was more over everything. I think this goes back months. I think maybe internally the decision was made and I think Ozzie will end up maybe with the Marlins …? And the Sox will go in a different direction.
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Naturally, the conversation then turned to who might replace Guillen. In response to that, Boyle delivered a name from out of left field behind home plate: Hall-of-Famer and former Sox player Carlton Fisk.

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The two agreed that, though Fisk has never managed on any professional level, he is a former catcher who likely has an innate knowledge of the game. Another possibility according to Boyle:

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Tony LaRussa’s going to be basically a free agent at the end of the year. There’s a lot of thought that, y’know, obviously he’s great friends with [team owner] Jerry Reinsdorf. [There’s talk that] Jerry [might] bring him back in some sort of consulting capacity, but I guess you couldn’t rule out that he would return as a manager. You never know.
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Boyle emphasized that, “I’m not saying it’s going to happen. I'm just saying I’m hearing rumblings.”

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We here at the Deep Dish find it hard to believe the White Sox brass would risk sparking a PR firestorm by dismissing a manager who’s generally beloved by the fanbase and who led the team through one of the more remarkable comeback seasons in recent Chicago sports history (no matter how badly it’s winding down).

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But the respective minds of Williams and Reinsdorf work in mysterious ways. And none of us on the outside truly know how much damage has been inflicted by the disagreements between Guillen and Sox upper-management — many of which have involved not just Ozzie himself, but also his family.

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Could both Chicago ballclubs wind up in search of a manager this Fall? At this point, it's just a maybe.

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