Mark P. Liptak
- Joined: Dec 29, 2020
- Last Login: Mar 23, 2021, 8:41pm EDT
- Comments: 421
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I suspect the Sox will pick up his option then deal him paying a large portion of his salary in order to get something reasonably worthwhile. if they don’t the return will probably be a low minor-leaguer.
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I just do the radio broadcast via KISU. Not connected with ESPN+ (they broadcast all home matches through their pay subscription service).Until this year we used to do a simulcast KISU radio and Pluto TV.
Do all games home and road via radio for women’s basketball. Home only for volleyball and softball. Not doing football this year.
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Yes I do along with women’s basketball (ISU is the defending Big Sky Champions) and softball.
Have also done football color and football studio work for ISU.
Was in TV sports for 14 years have been in radio sports since 2005.
Have covered a Super Bowl (Bears/Patriots), two Kentucky Derby’s, the NCAA Women’s Final Four and worked for CBS at the 2001 first and second rounds of the men’s tournament in Boise.
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As far as the "off-season" well…here’s my take:
To me the single biggest situation I’ll be watching for is Rick Hahn talking about what the inquiry into the Sox injuries has found. Already a few months ago a want-ad was posted seeking a "bio-mechanical" specialist, so obviously something has already been discovered working with the medical professionals.
If the Sox can’t get a handle on their injuries which had gutted them for the past four years, they’ll never be able to reach their potential.
As far as on-field questions, two immediately stand out…1A and 1B in my book.
Starting pitching: The Sox only have three guys they can count on, Lynn, Giolito and Cease. Kopech MAY be the fourth but until he actually does it, you just can’t say for sure. As far as the fifth starter, every single one of the potential candidates (including Rodon if he returns) has either serious question marks and/or issues. They may have to hit the free agent market again.
Right Field: The Sox have got to stop cheapening out on that position. They can’t continue to waste money on guys like Nomar Mazara and Adam Eaton and hope for a miracle. (Think Michael Brantley would have helped?) Right field is a power position, they need a guy there who’ll play 130 games and drive in runs. Who that guy is I don’t know, but it can’t be Leury Garcia or Adam Engel. Those guys are very good bench players, guys who can play once or twice a week, they aren’t right field material on a regular basis.
Other areas that may need to be looked at are second base (Hernandez was a disappointment) and back-up catcher (Grandal is getting older, they need someone who can play once or twice a week and produce.)
And certainly, last but not least is what do they do with Kimbrel? (If I remember they have an option on him for next year). He was just flat out brutal in coming back to an "adult" league. I have no idea if he has anything left or not but he (and Keuchel) is making a lot of money that could go to other needs.
Also, as an aside, this is just my "old school" talking. The Sox players need to shut their mouths until they actually do something besides go out in the first round of the playoffs. Saying they have the best bullpen (LOL Bummer), or are "the team to beat" (Anderson) or accuse another team of cheating (Tepera), without evidence, in my opinion does no one any good and makes them look like arrogant fools. Let the play on the field do all the talking.
That’s just my two-cants for whatever it’s worth.
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Disappointing end to the season. The Sox have a lot of off season work to do that’s for sure.
You can’t overstate the accomplishments this season.
93 wins despite injury after injury after injury after injury, a divisional title, consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2003-2006, consecutive playoff appearances for the first time in the 120 years of the franchise and they went 5-1 against the Cubs.
Again not skipping over just how badly they played against Houston nor the fact that TLR’s post season playoff record as Sox manager is now 2-6, but to think the entire season was "wasted" for wont of a better word, would also be wrong in my opinion.
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Here’s what Jeff told me in his interview:
ML: The Sox still won 87 games and looked ready to take the next step when word came that you resigned to take the Mets job. I remember reading that you wanted to be closer to your family in New Jersey, Jeff…but I’ve also heard rumors through the years that some in the front office didn’t care for the way you handled pitchers, specifically Bobby Thigpen who went downhill after 1991. When I’ve asked the guys you managed about that, like Donn Pall, he strongly defended the way you used the bullpen. Can you clear this up for me, why did you leave the White Sox? And were you forced out?
JT: "My mother was in her 80’s at the time but the reason that I left to be closer to my family was just for public relations, we didn’t want to hurt any feelings. I didn’t want to leave the White Sox. I had no desire to leave…why would I? This was a good young team ready to win; my wife and I loved Chicago and our son Dale was just starting out at Northwestern. (Author’s Note: Dale Torborg now works for the White Sox after a career in professional wrestling as a strength coach)
ML: Then obviously by your answer there’s more to the story than was told to fans at the time. What else was going on?
JT: "Later in the season we were in Minnesota for a two game series, it was a must win series for us because we were running out of time and I heard Peter Gammons report on ESPN that my job was in jeopardy. I was thinking, ‘where is this coming from?’ Then the last home stand of the year when we played the Twins again, Ron Schueler came into my office before it started and he closed the door. I was wondering what was going on. Ron said to me, "The Mets called me today and they want to talk with you about the managing job." I told him, "Ron, I appreciate it but I have no interest." Ron said, "well think about it and I’ll come back in a few days. We’ll talk again." I’m sitting there wondering what is going on, because I said I had no interest."
"So right before the last games, we had a makeup double header; Ron comes back and asks if I thought about the Mets offer. I told him again that I had no interest but then I said "Ron, I’ve got to ask you because this has come up, where I fit in with you and the organization?" He looked at me and said, "I think both of us would feel bad if you turned it down and then something happened."
"When he said that I had to think twice about what was happening. Ron and I never had a cross word between us that season but he wanted to hire his own guy, so when the Mets called I took the offer. It was the best thing for me financially but it was the worst move professionally I could have made. Ironically about a half hour after I verbally told the Mets I’d take the job the Yankees called and said they were firing "Stump" Merrill and offered me the position. I told them I had already given my word to the Mets and couldn’t go back on it but I didn’t want to leave the Sox in the first place." (Author’s Note: Schueler and the organization first contacted former Sox coach Jimmy Leyland, then the manager of the Pirates about the position, but he turned them down instead suggesting his longtime base coach Gene Lamont, who got the job.)
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That scrip and design was directly from the mouth of JR according to what Jeff told me. It was JR’s "tribute" to the Dodger teams he grew up loving.
Jeff told me that during his initial interview with JR in Arizona he mentioned that the Sox would have to change those uniforms, that only the Dodgers could wear those with any credibility. He didn’t know JR "designed" them until the man himself told him that he did.
Jeff thought that would be the end of the interview (LOL). He convinced JR that the Sox need a look that was uniquely theirs and not a copy of some other team…thus the silver/black pinstripe uniforms, a tribute to the Sox teams of the 50’s/early 60’s came into play.
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To their credit they didn’t roll over and die after getting hammered in the early innings.
They finally got some extra base hits after setting the record for most hits to start a playoff series without connecting on an extra base one. (20 in a row breaking the record of 19 set by the Angels).
Garcia made up for his mis-play on Friday.
Only thing that is really worrisome is the complete ineffectiveness by White Sox starters and it was the rotation that carried them this season…almost like the Astros know what is coming. (Much like the Blue Jays in the 93 ALCS, which they later admitted…)
Kopech was shaky but the rest of the bullpen did what they needed to do.
We’ll see if Rodon, who pitched well against them twice this year can do well Monday.
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This and That…
Cease named the starter for game #3. TLR still vague regarding Rodon’s status.
Also came across these stats which I found interesting:
During the wild card era (since 1995), the Sox are only one of three AL teams that have failed to make it to the ALCS at least twice (Twins and A’s have also only made it once). The Sox have the third longest ALCS drought in the AL. The Twins (‘02) and Mariners (’01) have longer droughts.
White Sox wild card era post-season record:
- 2005: 11-1
- Everything except 2005: 2-10
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True the overall record vs. teams that finished over .500 this year isn’t bad at 27-29…but look closer. Counting the playoffs they are now 10-21 on the road against those teams. They are 17-10 at home.
That’s why with this bunch it was so crucial to get home field advantage especially they way they play in Houston and they couldn’t get it done. Since the All-Star break they lost 19 games to the Royals, Indians, Twins, Tigers, Rangers and Angels…all teams that finished with a losing record.
That was the killer.
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Brett: No one is saying this season wasn’t a success regardless of what happens in the next 48 hours. You can’t overstate winning 93 games, having consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2003-2006 or having consecutive post season appearances for the first time in the 120 year history of the franchise.
But the Sox simply won’t reach their potential with half the key players out for sustained periods of time.
If this was to paraphrase an "everyday" occurrence in MLB then Hahn wouldn’t have said what he did at the press conference and announce the study in conjunction with doctors and trainers. If the Sox feel (finally) something is wrong that’s good enough for me.
Plus with the limited payroll restrictions you can’t expect miracles every year from back up’s, bench guys, has been’s, and never was’s. The Sox were extremely fortunate this year to have guys produce for them in the wake of the injuries. That was truly magnificent…but it’s not going to happen every year.
So the studs simply have got to stay healthy and play.
It’s a big deal for the Sox.
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Unless the Sox can finally get a handle on the injury situation that has been gutting this team for the past four seasons, they’ll never reach their potential.
The single biggest off season issue that I’ll be following will be the results of the study that Rick Hahn announced they are conducting as to why all the injuries and how best to try to prevent or limit their significance.
The Sox have already placed a want-ad a few months ago looking for a bio-mechanics specialist so it’s clear said study is producing some recommendations already.
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Have to broadcast an Idaho State volleyball game tonight so I don’t have a lot of time.
A few days ago I posted that my goals for the Sox were modest…win at least a game, don’t get swept, make this a competitive series.
Regretfully the Sox haven’t even been able to do that.
I also said my biggest worry was the bullpen, sure enough…
Ironically CBS Sportline ranked the playoff bullpens two days ago and they had the Sox as second to worst. And the primary culprit in their opinion? Bummer…
Sox are now 0-6 in Houston, they have scored a total of 13 runs in them and counting the post season they are now 10-21 on the road against teams that finished the season with a winning record.
I guess with these guys home field is "rather" important (as shown by their record.)
And let’s not forgot Giolito was as bad as Lynn.
On offense the Sox get 11 hits, plus three walks and only score four runs.
Do or die Sunday, I hope they at least show some pride.
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Teams that win the first game in a best of five series have won the series 72% of the time 101 of 140.
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I had reservations with Lynn starting game #1 based on his history with the Astros, they own him.
TLR thought otherwise and it didn’t work out.
McCullers could tell the Sox hitters what he was throwing today and it wouldn’t have mattered… like the Astros own Lynn, he owns the Sox.
Now 0-5 in Houston this year.
For all intents and purposes Friday’s game is a "must win". The difference between being down 0-2 in a best of five and splitting the first two on the road, heading home is like night and day.
Lot of pressure on Giolito tomorrow afternoon.