Naughts for the Aughts

Before we begin, make sure to vote on the last bullpen spot.  I thought Andrew Sisco was the best representative of the sinkhole that was the 2007 bullpen; Ryan Bukvich was nominated, seconded and thirded.

[polldaddy poll=2409219]

We’ll put it to a vote. Their cases in summary:
Sisco: From start to finish, it hurt and he hurt. He cost the Sox something of value, crashed hard, was awful in Charlotte too, then got injured and hasn’t pitched since.  Can’t fall much harder than that. Also a lefty, which gives this bullpen two of them.
Bukvich: He was Simply Bukvich ’til the bitter end. In his last appearance, he faced two batters. Both of them reached (a hit and a walk), and all three of his inherited runners scored. His name rhymed with two separate curse words, making it highly shoutable.
I almost threw Amos Dewon Day in here to make it a three-way, but he just wasn’t around long enough.
While democracy works its magic, here’s what the rest of the Worst Team of the ’00s looks like, barring no further comment:

  • C: Ben Davis
  • 1B: Timo Perez
  • 2B: D’Angelo Jimenez
  • 3B: Andy Gonzalez
  • SS: Royce Clayton
  • LF: Jerry Owens
  • CF: Brian Anderson
  • RF: Joe Borchard
  • DH: Harold Baines: World Pup

Changes: I’ll accept Rob’s argument for Anderson (replacing Darin Erstad) because Anderson’s flop was to blame for Erstad, Rob Mackowiak before him and and Nick Swisher after him.  It only seems fair.  And just because Godfather III shared the same series as Godfathers I and II doesn’t mean people don’t rail on it*, so we can do the same for Harold Baines’ third tour.  As a DH, he hit .166/.241/.228 over 162 plate appearances. That’s worse than Andy Gonzalez, so a point for Knox.
(*I’m told — I’ve only seen half a Godfather movie.)

  • C: Sandy Alomar Jr.
  • MIF: Brent Lillibridge
  • CIF: Wilson Betemit
  • 40F: Nick Swisher

No changes, but worth noting that Swisher trumps Erstad.  I think we’ll remember Erstad because it was a poorly conceived plot from start to finish, but if they kept him on the bench, it would’ve been fine. As was the case with Mackowiak, it was a usage problem, not a roster problem. Swisher was an epic bust — they centered an entire marketing campaign around him — both in the way the Sox handled him and the way he handled himself.
Honorable mentions:
Julio Ramirez: Great suggestion by karko20, and if the Sox stuck with him longer, we could’ve seen something magical.  White Sox Outsider 2010 will have a big-assed section on hitting coaches, and I came across this quote from Von Joshua shortly before he was fired in May of 2001:

Asked about working with Clayton, Baines and Ramirez, Joshua said: “We have a saying that you can’t make chicken salad out of chicken poo-poo.”

Let the record show that I did not edit that quote.
Toby Hall: Because he could’ve qualified as the first baseman, too.
The pitching staff stays relatively stable:

  • SP: Todd Ritchie
  • SP: David Wells
  • SP: Scott Schoeneweis
  • SP: Jon Rauch
  • SP: Arnie Munoz

No changes here. The good doctor suggested Felix Diaz for an honorable mention because he was the biggest tease of Fifth Starter Hell (Rauch had been injured during his, um, ascent), and I’ll drink to that.

  • RP: Sean Tracey
  • RP: Rick White
  • RP: Horacio Ramirez
  • RP: Jose Paniagua
  • RP: Tanyon Sturtze
  • RP: Sisco or Bukvich
  • Closer: Billy Koch

The winner of the poll gets the final spot.
Honorable mentions: Dewon Day for being eminently hittable (soxfan1), Bret Prinz for never getting loose (Dr. Lingerie), Mike Jackson for the grand slams (J.J., although Jackson only allowed two) and Ken Vining for guilt by association (hiphopnerd).
This was fun. Thanks.
With Jon Link heading to the land of Garland, the Sox replaced him by claiming Freddy Dolsi off waivers from the Detroit Tigers. He’s a sinkerballer with control issues, but slightly better than Kelvin Jimenez, the last reliever they put on the 40-man roster via this route.
Christian Marrero Reading Room:
*Carl has a great new cart0on at Smells Like Mascot, which I hadn’t put on the right rail… until tonight. My bad.
*Andrew has his own worst list — the worst good teams of the decade.
*J.J. Putz doesn’t mind being the opening act for Bobby Jenks.

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Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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One of the great moments of the Ryan Bukvich era–When he was first called up from Charlotte, the Score’s Chris Rongey was doing an interview with him. When Rongey asked him what kind of pitcher he was, Buckvich, in a completely serious and non-sarcastic tone, replied with “Right-handed”. I believe they still play the cut from time to time.


one of the best quotes ever and typically it plays at the start of every friday boers and bernstein broadcast


Although I feel like I’m not truly qualified to vote on this matter, I have to say Dewon Day was the worst thing that I’ve ever seen on the pitcher’s mound in my life. I’ve never had a major league pitcher make me feel like I could actually get a legitimate hit off them, except for Day. I suppose I should be grateful.


I don’t think you understand. It MUST be Bukvich.
Go to Ryan Bukvich’s wikipedia page.
Find this:
Bukvich appeared in 45 games with a 5.05 ERA and had one win, his first since 2003. He became a cult hero at U.S. Cellular Field, earning the nickname “Iceman” for his cool demeanor in pressure situations.
I didn’t put that there, I swear to GOD.


Is that an “Air Bud” joke?


Major League: Back to the Minors qualifies. That whole movie had no legs.


I voted for Sisco as his presence was emblamatic of not necessarily bad thinking, but poor execution of a bullpen strategy…assemble a collection of young hard throwing projects and hope that your guru pitching coach can straighten some of them out. Buckvich, OTOH, represents why the strategy bombed miserably in that due to the orgainizations drafting ineptness, there were NO suitable replacements in the minors to back up those who failed.
Lessons learned:
1. Draft more talented pitchers, and yes, pay them so they sign.
2. Coop can’t fix everything.


On a completely unrelated note, according to the White Sox 2009 media guide,
“Since 2002, the White Sox have used the DL 57 times for a total of 2,516 days, both of which are the least in the major leagues. To get an idea of just how spectacular that is, Seattle is second in number of times the DL was used at 81 and Oakland is second in total days used with 4,616.”
Kind of the opposite of what you’re aiming for, but an important number nonetheless.