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Commentary: Ozzie Guillen, an Alienation Story

April 10, 2012

Baseball

Let me take you back, back to 2005. Ozzie Guillen took his Chicago White Sox team to an uncharted territory – a World Series crown. Not only did he help win the club’s first championship in 88 years, but dominated the postseason with an 11-1 record, tying only that of the 1999 New York Yankees for the best ever single-postseason record. He was on top of the managerial world, and rightfully so.

Now let me welcome you back to 2012, where 2005 might as well be 1905 for Ozzie. Gone is his reputation for winning, and being one of the most outspoken leaders in baseball. In replacement; an uncanny ability to alienate himself with his words, and minimal results on the ball field to show for it.

A few years before he resigned from the White Sox, Guillen uttered a now quite ironic statement: “I’m not a quitter. When I want to quit, I’ll do a lot of stupid things and make sure they fire me and get paid.” While this may go through the head of a few people in life, rarely is it ever spoken, but for Ozzie his filter has been gone for years and this comes as no surprise.

In midst of his departure from Chicago he left the town with this bitter farewell,”Fuck more years, I want more money. Life is about money. People are happy when they make a lot of money.”

With those far from scripted words Guillen alienated himself from a city and franchise that he once ruled and packed his bags and departed the Windy City for  the sunny skies of South Beach.

He arrived to a city as flamboyant, and wild as his personality. The Miami Marlins seemed like a perfect fit for the manager; with the amount of personality in both Hanley Ramirez and Jose Reyes, and the rejuvenation of a seemingly dead franchise, how could the manger possibly find himself in the spotlight?

As they say, where there is a will there is a way, and Guillen found a way with these words….

“I love Fidel Castro,” followed by ,”I respect Fidel Castro. You know why? A lot of people have wanted to kill Fidel Castro for the last 60 years, but that (expletive) is still here.”

Now these statements alone are cause for controversy, Castro’s Cuba has been noted by Human Rights Watch as a serious violator of human rights. What makes this exponentially worse is the context of South Florida’s population. Out of the top 25 communities of Cuban ancestry, Miami-Dade County takes up 24 of those slots.

It is only common sense that many, including Cuban-American’s have taken to the streets of Miami in an outcry for Guillen’s resignation. The Miami Marlins however suspended the manger for 5 games for his comments.

One protestor calls for the firing of Ozzie Guillen. The Miami Marlins have recently suspended Guillen for 5 games following his statements about Fidel Castro. Image courtesy of The Telegraph

The manager in midst of the outcry and protest had an emergency press conference. This came after his 5 game suspension was announced by the Miami Marlins. In the conference he begged not only the Miami community, but the masses for forgiveness.

While the suspension was warranted, it begs the question: Was it enough? And will the city of Miami ever forgive him? The hatred for Fidel Castro runs deep for many, and for a figurehead of a franchise to give a notion of respect towards Castro, it could easily lead to a lifetime of bad relations with the Miami faithful.

Time will only tell for Ozzie Guillen, but one thing is for sure he took a perfect situation in Miami and turned it into a debacle with a few terrible words. This was suppose to be a change for the better, a chance to get back to the days of 2005 when winning was his only concern. Now he will have to win the hearts and minds of not only Cuban-American’s, but many other people in the United States, and elsewhere, something that definitely was not in his job description.

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About Stefan Jagot

22-year-old Broadcasting and Cinematic Arts Major at Central Michigan University. The jack of all trades for TheFarmClub.net.

View all posts by Stefan Jagot

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3 Comments on “Commentary: Ozzie Guillen, an Alienation Story”

  1. skoobasteve Says:

    Bill Maher sums my thoughts up perfectly.

    Reply

  2. 30carpileup Says:

    Even for a guy who’s made a career out of saying stupid things, this was a really stupid thing to say.

    Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Ozzie Guillen Out | TheFarmClub.net - October 24, 2012

    […] was always a rocky relationship for Guillen who caused an uproar when he spoke about his love of dictator Fiedel Castro.  This might not have been as horrible as it became if he was not in Miami, which has the biggest […]

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