June 13, 2005
The Week in Quotes
"There's a certain amount of freedom when you don't have an allegiance to any one side. Over the course of 28 years in Chicago as a player and broadcaster, I met a lot of people who told me a lot of things, and I still know a lot more than I can say, but I'm able to say a lot more than I did before and it's fun."
"Don't get me wrong, I still believe that there's a certain amount of joy associated with doing one team on a daily basis, but some days it's nice to close up the score book, know it doesn't matter who won or lost, and that it's not the middle of another 10-day road trip with thousands of miles left to fly."
"Almost verbatim, Kerry Wood is saying what I said about his mechanics for the last five years, about not flying open and staying under control and not throwing across his body. Now they're talking about how they lost focus last year and were terrible on the bases and in the field, but I was a villain when I said it."
"Have the opposing team's ace get the flu every series."
RUMOR, THAT MOST EFFICIENT OF PRESS AGENTS
"Who is Kittle? How long did he play? He played in our league? Ha! Do you guys believe that? Do you guys know my life history a little bit? One, you insult my children, who are half-white. I was married to a woman who was white, so let's get real. I don't even know the guy. Tell him he's an … idiot. Somebody said he wanted a piece of me. Tell him I'm at 24 Willie Mays Plaza and he can come get me anytime he wants to-with pleasure. Don't insult my family."
"I'm not surprised he acted like he didn't know who I was because he wouldn't know who I was if I stood next to him. He pays attention to himself, not anybody else. It's not a very good response from him. I am not sure he is whole-heartedly denying that he said it."
"I am very good at remembering things. I couldn't have introduced myself to him any more politely. I showed him the brochure and I did this thing as professional as could be. If it weren't pertaining to my charity, I probably would have cared less and just said he was a jerk. But when there is a chance for me to do something or for his signature to do something for charity, I won't stand for that. It's ironic that his dad died of cancer too."
YOUTH IS A DISAGREEABLE TIME, FOR IT IS NEITHER POSSIBLE THEN NOR PRUDENT TO BE PRODUCTIVE IN ANY SENSE WHATSOEVER
"You have good weeks and you have bad weeks, and I am discovering that they are sometimes the same week. I almost think that you have to make errors, you have to strike out with runners in scoring position, you even have to get thrown out of games to really learn. I know I shouldn't show too much emotion on the field, but I never want people to think I don't care. That would be the worst."
"He sounded like a little girl. He sounded like he was hollering in the house, playing poker or playing pool with his brothers. And then, two days later, I see him getting ejected. These are the two ends of the spectrum we're in the middle of right now. He's evolving all the time. We're just trying not to get too excited one day and then jump off a bridge the next."
"He's got to deal with it. All of it. It's good for him. And the better he does, the more I am going to give him to do. He will carry all my bags as long as I'm here. I read his fan mail sometimes - girls are asking to marry him - and it makes me sick. One of these days, I swear I'm going to smack him."
"He portrays this image of being the guy every mom wants to take home to her daughter, but he really isn't all milk and cookies. He is kind of cocky, but not so cocky that he would ever seem arrogant. The Mets are extremely lucky to have him. They can promote him in front of 6-year-olds and 60-year-olds and it's all smiles. You can send him to Chuck E. Cheese or a Fortune 500 company and he'll blend right in."
"Right now, everything is perfect. He's young, he's single and he's good-looking. Everybody loves him and the world is at his feet. I remember how that felt and I still sometimes ask myself, 'Where did it go?' But one day you feel this switch and everything changes, and it's never the same again. I only wonder how he will handle that. I think he'll be fine, but it will be different."
FIDELITY: A VIRTUE PECULIAR TO THOSE WHO ARE ABOUT TO BE BETRAYED
"Firing hitting coaches is in vogue right now. It's just a tough business. Pitching has improved."
"Baseball is a sport where when you don't do the right things as far as getting runners in, everybody sees that. Hitting is contagious one way or the other. As a hitting coach, the worst thing that can happen is you get most of your team not hitting at the same time. You go through it once or twice a year. You just hope it's short-lived."
"I think [the media] is trying to run me out of town. [Unjustly] you guys have put it on one element of a losing streak. I can't control the base hits. I can only give my guys the knowledge and the swing plane and thought process. Once the game starts, everything is totally out of my hands."
"Our coaches do a good job. They can't throw it for us, and they can't field it and hit it for us... We're just not hitting at the right time. I'm a prime example. We've got way too good of a ball club to be playing like this."
"Nobody in the world can do a better job with this team. Nobody could do a better job than I have done. So I don't worry about things like that."
THE PRICE OF ANYTHING IS THE AMOUNT OF LIFE YOU EXCHANGE FOR IT
"When I came here three years ago, we were talking about a situation where we wanted to win now. And we were interested in winning now. And you know what, with a small payroll, we improved from 55 to 63 [wins], and 63 to 70. This was supposed to be the breakout year. The problem is, we've got a new ownership group here that's changed the direction we're headed. They're not interested about the present. They're interested about the future. And that's their right."
"But when other teams are getting better presently when we're not, you're going to get your butts beat. And that's exactly what's happening. Now, I'm not going to take responsibility for this. If I had been given a $40 or $45 million payroll and we're getting beat like that, I'd stand up like a man and say it's my fault. We'll, I'm not going to do it. So if you want answers for what's going on around here, you call the new ownership group and let them give 'em to you. That's all I've got to say."
"When you look at it from a wins and loss standpoint, it hasn't been good. You all know that as well as I do. It hasn't been good. No. No, it hasn't been good. Hasn't been good. No."
"We're going to give him every chance to win his 200th game. I'm going to leave him in the rotation. Let's hope he gets it soon. I'm going to give him every opportunity. And I think he'll get it here pretty quickly."
"I think we've hit rock bottom. I really do. I think from here we'll slowly get better."
"I don't think I have anything to prove down here. The only thing I have to prove is being consistent in the big leagues. And it's hard to do that from here."
"I steal bases, I hit for a high average, I hit home runs, I play all three outfield positions, I DH. Every time they send me down, they don't tell me anything to work on. ... I'm down here confused by the silence."
"The bullpen is as rested as it could be. If we can't get by with six pitchers in three days, I don't think the seventh is going to make a difference."
"The nail flipped up like a car hood. But I didn't want to come out because of a broken nail."
"This shows the organization has good taste."
"At that time, the two stars in the minor league system were Ozzie and Jimmy Jones. Jack McKeon called them his two 'untouchables.' Both were traded within two years."
"The situation here is not too good. It's frustrating. I feel very bad that I'm not playing. I'll do it and I'll do my best, but I don't think DHing is a good idea. It's not good for my career and it's not good for my future."
"We have 40 wins? Good for them. I think playing smart and playing the right way has helped a lot."
"If you come to watch a baseball game, the team to watch right now is the White Sox because we're in first place. If you want to visit another museum, go to Wrigley Field."
"J-Lo was there at our place in Anaheim. Up there above the dugout with whatchamacallit [Ben Affleck]."
"That's motivation, bro."