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Ozzie scolds anti-Thome fans ... again

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Ozzie scolds anti-Thome fans ... again

Unread postby consigliere » Sat Apr 14, 2007 7:47 am

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball ... 14.article

Ozzie scolds anti-Thome fans ... again
April 14, 2007
BY JOE COWLEY Staff Reporter

CLEVELAND -- Jim Thome got what he expected from Cleveland fans when his name was announced for each at-bat on Friday, but the booing for the former long-time Indians slugger still wasn't sitting well with Ozzie Guillen.

As a matter of fact, the White Sox manager was anticipating a warm welcome for Thome this time around, after he was booed in his return to Cleveland all of last season.

With that not the case, that left Guillen with a message to Cleveland and its fans.

''This man is Cleveland Indians, this man is going to be in the Hall of Fame in a Cleveland Indians uniform,'' Guillen said. ''Respect that. Appreciate that. This man, when he goes into the Hall of Fame, he won't wear no [expletive] White Sox uniform, he'll be wearing a Cleveland Indians hat. He won't wear no Philadelphia hat. If they boo me, fine. I deserve that. I earned that. But when you boo this man, this is a classy man, he's one guy that's going to represent the Cleveland Indians in the Hall of Fame.''

Thome spent the first 12 years of his big-league career with the Tribe. When he left as a free agent after the 2002 season, the Indians were rebuilding and offered him a five-year, $60 million deal. Compared to the seven-year deal offered to him by Philadelphia that could have reached the $94 million mark with bonuses and options, he chose the Phillies.

''They should respect that we play the game to make money, like a doctor has a job,'' Guillen said. ''Hall of Fame? Yes, nice. Hall of Fame don't make people go to college, Hall of Fame doesn't pay for college for your kids. You think the money was right somewhere else, you have to respect that. I guarantee you he wanted to stay here.

''He will be in the Hall of Fame. He will be in a Cleveland hat. I have to talk to him to make sure he wears the White Sox.''

As for Thome, he continued to handle the entire situation with class, reiterating that all of his memories from his Cleveland days are good ones.

''Let's face it -- I left here as a free agent, so there will be fans who are a little upset,'' Thome said. ''I understand that. On the other hand, I hope they understand my reasoning for why I did what I did. As a man, you have to be held accountable for your actions. I certainly have tried to do that. I haven't run or hid from things. I left, and it is what it is.''
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Unread postby dpdad » Sat Apr 14, 2007 7:55 am

Thome is handling the boos better than Ozzie. No surprise that fans have reacted this way to Thome coming to the Jake.

But what can you buy with 18 mil per year that you can't buy with 15 mil per year? Thome made his choice. At least he seems to understand the consequences of his decision.
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Unread postby swerb » Sat Apr 14, 2007 8:41 am

Thome is a lying, backstabbing, two faced turncoat. It's that simple.

I have no problem with someone "taking the money".

I do have a problem with people that say the following things just before taking the money ...

"It can't be all about greed."

"The deal has to be fair for both sides."

"They'd have to rip the jersey off my back."

These are all documented statements he said more than once, including during an in studio interview with Trivosonno a month or so before this all came to a head. Triv constantly plays these soundbites.

Even worse, he is a member of the Chicago White Sox, who are pretty much = to the Steelers right now to any true Cleveland sports fan.

Yes, Thome had some great years here, and played the facade of the all around good guy to the tee. But to sit in Jacobs field and cheer for this Benedict Arnold, now as a member of our arch rivals ... it's unfathomable to me.
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Unread postby pup » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:23 am

Don't forget his refusal to wave his no trade clause.
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:51 am

How bout the fact that the Tribe low balled him and never expected to see him again, and when he came back from Philly and asked what can you do for me Shapiro was stutterin' like Lenny from Of Mice and Men.

Thome may be at fault, but he wasn't the only one that was.
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Unread postby pup » Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:13 am

Thome may be at fault, but he wasn't the only one that was.


They told him before the trade deadline they wouldn't pay him what he was going to get offered. He said don't worry about it. They said will only offer this $__________. If you are going to take more, let us trade you. He said no. Then ran at the highest offer he found.

He is a two faced, smacked around by his wife hick. The only difference between him and Boozer...Shapiro isn't blind.
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Unread postby swerb » Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:22 am

Ding, ding, ding!

What do we have for him Johnny?
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:23 am

I don't think that's accurate, but I can't bet my life on any version I've heard.

And, if you hate Thome don't lump Boozer in with him. All Boozer did was take advantage of a really dumb organization.
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Unread postby Lebowski » Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:51 am

Fuck Ozzie, he doesn't know the history. This guy needs to stop shoving his nose into everything...dude is the next coming of Curt Schilling.

Bottom line - Thome is pussy-whipped.
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Unread postby consigliere » Sat Apr 14, 2007 11:43 am

Pup wrote:Don't forget his refusal to wave his no trade clause.


The Indians never approached him about waving it.

Anyway, I just did an article on it which will post today on the site.....

And for the record, I am in complete agreement with Swerb and Pup.
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Unread postby pup » Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:17 pm

The Indians never approached him about waving it.


According to who? I thought the Thome camp said they never did, but the Front Office was saying they did.
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Unread postby dpdad » Sat Apr 14, 2007 3:07 pm

Great article, Tony, on the main page. Didn't realize the money differences had been whittled down to potentially 10 mil, with a vested sixth year offered by the Tribe. I remember the Indians offered a lot of other perks to Thome as well, including a loge, renaming a section of the ballpark after him, a coffee table book with Thome getting the profits, and a statue rivaling the Feller statue at the opposite entrance of Jacobs field. Hell, the ego trip of having my own statue would be worth a couple of mil to me.
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Unread postby British_Pharaoh » Sat Apr 14, 2007 3:17 pm

Ozzie doesnt understand that Thome-traitor LIED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

if he hadnt made his 'rip the jersey off my back' statement then he wouldnt get this bad a reception every time he returns to the Jake
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Unread postby jfiling » Sat Apr 14, 2007 3:28 pm

Lebowski wrote:Fuck Ozzie, he doesn't know the history. This guy needs to stop shoving his nose into everything...dude is the next coming of Curt Schilling.

Bottom line - Thome is pussy-whipped.


Awesome and correct. When is Ozzie going to either shut up or just disappear?

Edit - Ugueth Urbina comment removed.
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sat Apr 14, 2007 5:54 pm

The bottom line for me in this is that this situation is just SSSOOOO much conjecture. If you have a gun to my head and I had to tell you which side is closer to the truth Thome's Camp or The Shapiro crew. I would choose Thome's. This is strictly my opinion, like I said earlier, I don't know for sure. There are a few issues that have me leaning this way including how a guy like Dibiasio has waffled a bit when this subject is broached. That's a guy that has been pretty open about many things, some of them similiar, (Albert Belle etc.) the way he's commented on Thome makes me skeptical. And, I know this isn't a popular opinion, but, I ain't here to lie to you guys, it's just the way I feel.
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Unread postby Mr. MacPhisto » Sat Apr 14, 2007 7:16 pm

Tony, you wrote a fantastic piece on Thome.

Belle was always a turd of a person, but I respected him as a player and knew he'd take the money.

Manny is a great hitter. We tried, but the money lured him away. We've since heard that it sounds like he somewhat regrets going to Boston and wishes he would have stayed, but neither of those guys ever played it off like they were going to be here forever. Neither ever stepped up and said money didn't matter.

The Thome deal hurt the most because of what Thome appeared to be. And the big loser ends up being Thome. Had he stayed in Cleveland, taking less money, he would have been a bigtime hero in the city. I'd go so far as to say that he may have ended up being a better candidate for the Hall of Fame because is baseball outside issues and character do often matter - not always, but a guy like Thome who stayed in one org through his whole career is an appealing player.

But Thome was about the money in the end. I can understand taking more money, but it's better to be honest about it.

That's one reason why I haven't been a fan of Shaq in basketball for years. He was all the rage in Central Florida when he was with Orlando. Then he went to LA and dared to say it wasn't about the money, even after he could have taken their first offer to move out to LA and ignored Orlando's response - or just had LA match the Orlando offer.

If Philly and Cleveland offered the same money and he went to Philly because he felt he had a better chance to win there, that's one thing. As an excuse to take more cash, it's a poor one.
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Unread postby captain_wahoo » Sat Apr 14, 2007 8:50 pm

I thought that the Indians had offers coming from Atlanta and the Cubs, but didn't pursue it because of Thome's apparent desire to stay an Indian for the length of his career.
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Unread postby Dozen » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:02 pm

Tony, you wrote a fantastic piece on Thome.
I disagree, it sounded more like a "why I lost my high-school sweetheart" rant to me. Had Thome stayed, it would have crippled the rebuilding effort Shapiro wanted to do. By dangling enough money and staying in the hunt......it subdued most Indians fans. I was hurt when he left more than even Manny, but looking back on it I cant blame the guy. Any competitor wouldnt want to be the highest paid player on a gutted ball club. You know it killed that guy inside, he knew he would be the villian. There was no way around it. I have no problems with Thome at all, and I respect what he did for the organization.
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Unread postby Mr. MacPhisto » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:22 pm

Dozen wrote:
Tony, you wrote a fantastic piece on Thome.
I disagree, it sounded more like a "why I lost my high-school sweetheart" rant to me. Had Thome stayed, it would have crippled the rebuilding effort Shapiro wanted to do. By dangling enough money and staying in the hunt......it subdued most Indians fans. I was hurt when he left more than even Manny, but looking back on it I cant blame the guy. Any competitor wouldnt want to be the highest paid player on a gutted ball club. You know it killed that guy inside, he knew he would be the villian. There was no way around it. I have no problems with Thome at all, and I respect what he did for the organization.


I agree that he would have crippled the organization, but that's not enough to satisfy me. It's Thome's lies that make me disrespect the man; the lies that baseball "isn't about the money" to him.

I don't buy the "he didn't want to be the highest paid player on a gutted ballclub" argument. He could have been a part of the core going forward. He said it wasn't about the money when it was. He was dishonest.

All that said, his leaving was a blessing in disguise. We probably never would have gone out and gotten Hafner if Thome stayed BUT if he would have been upfront and admitted he would go to the highest bidder then the Tribe likely would have traded him and gotten something more than draft picks in return.

Like Boozer, there definitely have been benefits to Thome leaving. But Thome did no better than Carlos Boozer did by stabbing us in the back. That makes Jim Thome a complete fake as far as I'm concerned.

I have no problem with people taking the payday, but be honest about it. It's okay if it IS the money, but don't lie to our faces and pretend that it's about winning sooner or whatever other excuses Thome needed to make to justify himself.

All he had to say was "Philly is guaranteeing me more money and that's important for me and my family's future security." It was that simple. Anyone can understand that $23million extra is A LOT extra. That's another winning lottery ticket, but to act like that wasn't the deciding factor is dishonest.
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sat Apr 14, 2007 9:51 pm

Again, much he said, she said conjecture. I'm not sure one of the above posts (even though many are quite good) can say for certain, unequivically what happened. The guy said publically some things that made him appear whipped (my wife is my rock) and still more that can easily be taken out of context. I think there will always be opinions on Thome, and I understand the negative ones, but factually, we are basing this on what we here from people on either side that are biased.
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Unread postby Dozen » Sat Apr 14, 2007 11:10 pm

All that said, his leaving was a blessing in disguise. We probably never would have gone out and gotten Hafner if Thome stayed BUT if he would have been upfront and admitted he would go to the highest bidder then the Tribe likely would have traded him and gotten something more than draft picks in return


I agree about Hafner, but I dont think the organization was stable enough to trade Thome no matter what. If you rewind to the atmosphere back then, there was alot of uncertainty from the fan base about the club. A new owner/GM and fans pretty much knowing the big spending of the 90's was coming to an abrupt end. Fair or unfair it was the only legitimate powerhouse/dynasty type team in our generation and more importantly in this miserable sports town lifes. We were not a mid-market team. We were a contender. I have no doubt Shapiro feared Thome would accept their deal. He had to be in the ballpark, or risk losing the entire fanbase. Strategicly it was the right thing to do. But bashing a guy for caliing his wife his "rock"? C'mon, he's a high character guy. He couldnt even get through his PC in Philly, but I supposed it was all staged. :roll :roll:
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Unread postby consigliere » Sat Apr 14, 2007 11:40 pm

Pup wrote:
The Indians never approached him about waving it.


According to who? I thought the Thome camp said they never did, but the Front Office was saying they did.


According to many. Pluto mentioned it a long way back, and I was told this some time ago by Jim Ingraham.

Here is an article by Ingraham in USAToday stating the trade clause never was asked to be waived:

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/bbw/2002 ... ecial2.htm

It's for that reason that general manager Mark Shapiro, who in one frenzied month made five trades with four different organizations, never considered trading Thome, much less ask him to waive his no-trade clause.

In fact, the more trades Shapiro made, the more he started to think about trying to keep the Indians' all-time home run leader.

Although Shapiro is quick to point out that none of the trades were ownership-ordered salary dumps, the fact remains that as the Indians look ahead to next year, the projected budget is much more manageable than it was six months ago.

"The further we got into this rebuilding phase, the more my desire became to increase our payroll flexibility for next year, so we can make an attempt to re-sign Jimmy," says Shapiro.

As it turned out, Thome was retained for two reasons: Shapiro had no desire to trade him, and Thome said he has no desire to leave.

"I've never even thought about playing for another team," says Thome. "I really like the idea of playing your whole career in one place. That doesn't happen much today. You look at Cal Ripken, Tony Gwynn, Kirby Puckett. For them to play their whole careers for one team, that's very special."


This was actually the article I got those Thome quotes from in the piece. I've had this article 60% completed since last year when we first played the WS, and completed it today after reading Ozzie's statements.

And Dozen, Thome flat out lied to the org. That's not whining or crying, that's the truth. YMMV.
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sun Apr 15, 2007 12:24 am

And, in my opinion the organization wasn't truthful with him, either.
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Unread postby pup » Sun Apr 15, 2007 8:27 am

Thanks Tony.
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Unread postby Dozen » Sun Apr 15, 2007 10:23 am

And Dozen, Thome flat out lied to the org. That's not whining or crying, that's the truth. YMMV.



Hey, you are entitled to your opinion as well am I, it wasnt a personal attack on your article. I usually enjoy your reads, I just happen to disagree with that take. And wtf is "YMMV"?
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Unread postby swerb » Sun Apr 15, 2007 10:32 am

Dozen wrote:
And Dozen, Thome flat out lied to the org. That's not whining or crying, that's the truth. YMMV.



Hey, you are entitled to your opinion as well am I, it wasnt a personal attack on your article. I usually enjoy your reads, I just happen to disagree with that take. And wtf is "YMMV"?

YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary

(you may see it a different way)
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Unread postby Dozen » Sun Apr 15, 2007 10:34 am

thanks :mrgreen:
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